Submissions for the 2019 Spring Garden Competition have closed.
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- All entries must be based in the City of Ryde local government area.
- Entry to the 2019 Spring Garden Competition is free.
- Entries open on Monday 1 July 2019 and close on Saturday 31 August 2019.
- We encourage entries in the Children’s Seed Growing category to be made before Wednesday 31 July 2019 to allow for maximum seed growing time.
The City of Ryde has a long and proudly history of conducting the Spring Garden Competition. This established community event has been held annually for more than thirty years. The City of Ryde is one of the few local councils still organising and providing a garden competition for its local residents and local community.
The Spring Garden Competition is a popular community event that has a unique ‘hands on’ quality. Creative and well-tended garden entries are expected from a wide variety of city landscapes including traditional back gardens, courtyards, balconies, river-frontages, corporate green-spaces, community gardens, school yards and large tracts of natural bushland.
This is an inclusive event and we strongly encourage entries from young aspiring green thumbs (children) to older green thumbs (seniors), individual gardeners, families, community groups, different cultural groups, gardeners with different abilities, commercial organisations and small businesses. With twelve categories of entry, there is certainly something for everyone.
- Large Gardens: large private residential gardens - may be the whole garden or just a section.
- Small Gardens: small private residential gardens - may be the whole garden or just a section.
- Courtyard or Balcony Gardens: private residential garden using pots, planter boxes, ornaments, walled gardens etc.
- Edible Gardens: vegetable gardens, fruit gardens, permaculture gardens etc.
- Native & Habitat-friendly Gardens: gardens which feature Australian native plants and include habitat elements to encourage native fauna such as birds, lizards, possums and insects.
- Children’s Gardens: private residential gardens inspired and created by a child, group of children or a family with young children.
- School Gardens: gardens within local primary or high schools where students and teachers or the community have worked together.
- Pre-School Gardens: gardens within local pre-schools where students and teachers or the community have worked together.
- Community Gardens: garden projects where the local community, groups or community organisations have worked together.
- Commercial Gardens: gardens within local businesses and commercial organisations eg. hotels, retirement villages, commercial premises, small and large businesses, universities etc.
- Bushcare Sites: for an outstanding contribution made by a group of volunteers at a recognised Bushcare site.
- Children’s Seed Growing Competition: Children can enter in the following age brackets: 3 – 7 years and 8 - 12 years. The seeds to be grown are sunflower seeds. Free seeds, pot and growing instructions will be available for collection from Eden Gardens. Note: We encourage entries in the Children’s Seed Growing category to be made before 31 July to allow for maximum seed growing time.
All entries in the Large, Small, Courtyard or Balcony, Edible, Native & Habitat-friendly, Children’s, School, Pre-School, Community, Commercial Gardens and Bushcare Sites will be personally judged by a panel of appointed garden judges and horticulture professionals. The City of Ryde will contact entrants to confirm their allocated judging time slot for the judging panel to view each Spring Garden Competition entry. Wherever possible judging will take place during mid-September to early October 2019.
It is preferable that Spring Garden Competition entrants are present at their allocated judging timeslot and during the judging of their entry. Judging generally takes between 20 – 45 minutes depending on the size and nature of the entry. Entrants are encouraged to show the judges around their garden. The judges may ask the entrant some basic questions about their garden and gardening practices.
For most categories, judging will be based on three main factors:
- Maintenance - the lack of elements such as dead and diseased plants, well presented lawns and clipped shrubs, considered water usage and overall attention to detail.
- Design - aspects such as layout, colour, use of line, form and texture, plant use and once again attention to detail within this context.
- Intent - the active participation of the entrant, level of knowledge and enthusiasm and extent of third party assistance.
Some categories will have some additional or specific judging criteria:
- The Children’s Garden, Pre-school Garden and School Garden categories will have additional judging criteria relating to the engagement and participation of the child, children or students.
- The Edible Garden category will have additional judging criteria relating to edible produce and productive practices.
- The Native & Habitat-friendly Garden category will have additional judging criteria relating to Australian native plants and the provision of habitat-elements for local fauna.
- The Community Garden category will have additional judging criteria relating to community engagement and community participation.
- The Bushcare category will have slightly different judging criteria as it is a specialist area and will take Bushcare principles and best practice into consideration.
All entrants in the Large, Small, Courtyard or Balcony, Edible, Native & Habitat-friendly, Children’s, School, Pre-School, Community, Commercial Gardens and Bushcare Sites will be invited to attend a Gala Presentation Evening for the announcement of the 2019 Spring Garden Competition winners.
- 1 July 2019: Entries open for 2019 Spring Garden Competition.
- 31 August 2019: Entries close for 2019 Spring Garden Competition.
- Early September 2019: City of Ryde council officer will contact entrants to confirm their allocated time and date for judging.
- Mid-September to early October 2019: Garden judges accompanied by a City of Ryde council officer will visit and judge all Spring Garden Competition entries on the allocated date at the allocated time slot.
- 23 October 2019: Gala Presentation Evening at Eden Gardens where entrants can meet and mingle with fellow gardeners, community representatives and supporters of the event. The highlight of this evening will be the announcement of the 2019 Spring Garden Competition winners and place getters.
NOTE: please visit the Children’s Seed Growing Competition page for more information about this competition and key dates.
Click here to get some inspiration and view photos from some entries from previous Spring Garden Competition events.
For further enquiries call City of Ryde’s Customer Service Centre on 9952 8222.
Watch the video below to find out from last year's winners of the Best Small Garden category what they love about gardening and why you should enter the 2019 Spring Garden Competition.