Today B&Q announces the return of its B&Q Gardener of the Year competition, celebrating the wonderful world of Britain’s amateur gardeners. With fresh categories, the delightful Dame Prue Leith on the judging panel and £10,000 up for grabs, this competition has quickly become a highlight in the gardening calendar.
Following last year's success, which saw Sunderland firefighter, Gary McLaughlan, crowned B&Q Gardener of the Year - his 4.5m x 3.5m concrete yard transformation showed that everyone has the potential to wow the judges, no matter the size of your garden or your experience.
B&Q Gardener of the Year 2022 looks a little different this year with Dame Prue Leith swapping her spatula for secateurs and leading this year’s judging panel. An avid gardener herself, Dame Prue says that gardening has been the love of her life over the past 45 years, making her the perfect judge for year two of the competition.
Joining Dame Prue are returning judges and award-winning garden designers, Matt Childs and Humaira Ikram, along with B&Q Outdoor Director, Steve Guy. Matt has been responsible for designing multiple medal-winning show gardens at both the RHS Chelsea and RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Shows. Humaira, meanwhile, is a professional garden designer, a regular contributor on BBC Gardeners Question Time and will this year be an RHS judge at many of its shows. Steve’s 35 years in the home gardening industry makes him our expert on what makes a truly magnificent ‘real’ gardener.
This mighty team will shortlist all entries to ultimately crown this year’s B&Q Gardener of the Year, who will be awarded £10,000, a £2,500 B&Q gift card and the prestigious ‘Golden Trowel’ award. Three runners up will also be rewarded £1,000 for their gardening prowess.
This year the nation will showcase their green fingers in four brand new categories. Perhaps you’re a Classic Gardener, who appreciates the importance of time, care and attention when building your outdoor space. A Year-Round Gardener whose garden thrives no matter the season. A Productive Gardener who makes sure their outdoor space works as hard as they do, or perhaps an Eccentric Gardener who doesn’t follow the rules and always embraces the unexpected.
Across all categories, gardeners will be commended for their use of sustainable practices, for example by using peat-free compost, as well as showcasing how they have encouraged and allowed nature to thrive in their outdoor space.
No matter what type of gardener you are, only the very best will be crowned B&Q Gardener of the Year 2022. To help get your green fingers on the crown, B&Q’s range of over 2,000 plants, which have been vetted for quality at every stage, will help make every outdoor space bloom this year.
Prue Leith, judge of B&Q Gardener of the year, says: “I am so excited to be part of this year’s B&Q Gardener of the Year competition after seeing the success of last year. I love to celebrate creative flair in many different forms and see people’s imaginations come to life through their craft, so I’m looking forward to seeing how the fantastic British gardeners maximise their outdoor space and allow nature to thrive (alongside maybe getting a bit of inspiration for my own garden too). Good luck to everyone entering!”
Steve Guy, B&Q Outdoor Category Director, says: “It’s fair to say we were blown away by last year’s entries. I’ve always known the people of Britain truly love their gardens and, for me, the passion and creativity we show through our outdoor space really is the best in the world. So, needless to say, I’m incredibly excited about seeing what you’ve all been up to this past year. At B&Q, we truly believe gardening should be for everyone, we have a range of over 2,000 different plants across the year, catering for every type of garden. And as the UK’s largest garden centre, we take our role of offering sustainable, nature friendly products very seriously. Because our gardens are our chance to make a difference to our corner of the planet.
In addition, the Community Garden of the Year award is also back, after the competition in 2021 saw the Brickmakers Wood community garden in Ipswich win the prize. The prize that looks to democratise gardening celebrates outdoor spaces, which have been created by the community for the community with the aim of improving the life and wellbeing of those in the surrounding area. The winning garden will receive a £2,500 B&Q gift card to spend on their community space.
The B&Q Gardener of the year competition is open now and close at 11.59 20th June, anyone can enter via diy.com/gardener-of-the-year.