Supporting communities  |  8 Jan 2020

If you have a garden packed with plentiful potatoes, lavish lettuces or beautiful berries then you could be a contender for the upcoming Edible and Sustainable Garden Awards.

Four Christchurch Community Boards are holding the awards in partnership with the Canterbury Horticultural Society. Entry is free and open now for individuals, groups, schools, early learning centres and businesses in the participating Community Board areas. 

They are:

  • Halswell-Hornby-Riccarton
  • Linwood-Central-Heathcote
  • Papanui-Innes
  • Spreydon-Cashmere

Christchurch City Council Community Governance Team Manager Matt McLintock says the 2020 Edible and Sustainable Garden Awards are an opportunity to recognise the hard work of backyard gardeners, school pupils, community groups and even local businesses who are creating amazing gardens. He encourages everyone to get involved and have a go, not just experienced gardeners. 

“Gardening, being active outside and eating fresh produce are all great habits for people’s health and well-being. These awards are a way to recognise people and groups who are role-models in their community, and benefiting our environment with their efforts. But the goal is really about having fun and taking part, rather than competition.”

People can enter their own garden, or nominate someone else's (with their permission).  Previous entrants and award winners are eligible to enter and all entrants will be recognised for their efforts.  

There are Special Awards sponsored by Mitre 10, including a prize for best tomatoes, best sustainability feature, best organic garden and best yield.

Garden assessments will be carried out by the Canterbury Horticultural Society and the criteria for judging includes variety of plants, freedom from pests and diseases, general presentation and absence of weeds, innovation, and use of walls, raised beds and containers. 

Ray King, Canterbury Horticultural Society President, says preparing a garden, planting seeds and growing vegetables and fruit successfully is rewarding. "More so than before, it is important to know where our food comes from. Our gardens do this for us and help us to stay fit at the same time. We always enjoy visiting the gardens and are sure that in 2020 it will be just as enjoyable as in the past."

Enter online  or request an entry form by phoning the Council on 03 941 8999. Entries close at 5pm on Monday 20 January.