Hunt for gardening talent in schools
The search is on for the young horticultural talent as the Royal Horticultural Society’s School Gardeners of the Year 2018 competition is open for nominations.
Now in its seventh year, the contest celebrates the passion and creativity in school gardening across the UK, with a range of top prizes.
This year, supported by greenhouse maker Gabriel Ash, the RHS is calling on schools to nominate their gardening heroes across three categories:
- RHS Young School Gardener of the Year: open for pupils aged five-16 who demonstrate a true passion for gardening, show invaluable gardening skills and have made an outstanding contribution to their school or community.
- RHS School Gardening Team of the Year: recognises a group that has made a difference to their school environment or community.
- RHS School Gardening Champion of the Year: for teachers, leaders and volunteers who have inspired a passion for gardening and have brought the curriculum alive.
How to enter
Enter at https://schoolgardening.rhs.org.uk/Competitions/school-gardeners-of-the-year – applications close at 5pm on Wednesday, April 25. Shortlisted applicants will be asked to produce a five-minute video in support of their entry.
Prizes include cedar cold frames and a greenhouse by Gabriel Ash, National Garden Gift Vouchers and tools. Winning schools will also receive a visit from competition judge and TV gardening presenter, Frances Tophill.
The competition is part of the RHS Campaign for School Gardening which has been running for ten years, supporting almost 35,000 schools and youth groups and six million children.
It comes as the government has committed £10million to help engage children in nature as part of its 25 Year Environment Plan.
Opportunities for pupils
Frances Tophill said: “I wasn’t lucky enough to get the chance to garden at school so I’m always delighted at the opportunities that are available to pupils now – be it growing veg from seed or encouraging wildlife into their plots.
“It’s a real joy to help judge School Gardeners of the Year and see first-hand the difference that gardening can make.”
In 2017, Fraser White, 10, from Fife, won the Young School Gardener of the Year title.
Hammersmith Academy in London took the team award while science teacher David Nicol from the Good Shepherd Institute in Bishopton won the champion award.
For more information on gardening for children, visit https://schoolgardening.rhs.org.uk.