Budding Gardeners 2018

RHS Garden Wisley 

About the competition:

Each year, we look for budding garden designers to show off their love of gardening, and their imagination, by creating and planting up a mini show garden to be displayed at RHS Garden Wisley during Summer Half Term.

Taking part:

Schools signed up to the RHS Campaign for School Gardening are eligible to apply. If you are not registered yet, it's easy and free. Click here to register.

Entries are welcome from all schools that are willing and able to get to RHS Garden Wisley for the set-up days and take-down days specified in the FAQ forms.

If you think your school has got what it takes to design an outstanding 1m x 1m pallet garden, look out for when the competition is next open in the new year.

In the meantime, use the links on the right hand side of the page to have a look at some of the entries from previous years for inspiration.

Judging and prizes:

Show gardens will be judged for a number of awards including:

  • Best in Show Acorn Award (Early Years - Key Stage 2)
  • Best in Show Oak Award (Key Stage 3 - 5)
  • Most Original Award
  • Green Award
  • Curator's Award
  • Sponsor's Award
  • Bronze, Silver and Gold awards (awarded to all entrants)
  • People's Choice Award (this is judged throughout half term and announced once the competition has finished)

Prizes include trophies, seeds, books and tools.


To help get your creative ideas going, check out 2018's entries which were designed to fit the theme of "A Wildlife Garden".

It is important to encourage wildlife to visit our gardens and to nurture them whilst they stop by. We asked schools to plant a mini show garden designed to support and enhance the habitats of some of the creatures that help enrich our gardens.

Inspired by this competition?

Use our resource Design a Miniature Garden to get your pupils planning and designing gardens on a small scale to the theme of your choice.

This is also a great wet weather activity to do indoors or perfect if you don't have much outdoor space.

Scheme of Work

The Budding Gardeners competition can fit into the curriculum in a number of ways. Townley Grammar School have kindly offered us their scheme of work for Key Stage 3 D&T. This scheme can be adapted for other age groups or even for Gardening Clubs. Download the scheme of work here.

We've won awards!

Winner of the Drum Marketing Awards 2017
Winner of the ERA 2017 awards
Winner of the Third Sector 2017 awards