AAS Releases 2019 Landscape Design Challenge Winners
All-America Selections’ 2019 Landscape Design Challenge used the theme of “Re-Use, Recycle, Re-Imagine” to inspire this year’s creations. Each garden was free to interpret the theme in their chosen manner, resulting in some very fun, creative and interesting displays.
For this challenge, AAS provided the gardens with recent AAS Winner seed and plants. The gardens also had the option to incorporate older AAS Winners in their design to illustrate the “Re-Imagine” theme. Gardens not only had to create and execute a design based on this year’s theme, but also, were encouraged to generate publicity and hold events to share the story of All-America Selections and AAS Winners.
Gardens were divided into three categories based on the number of visitors per year.
The contest judges were:
- Jeff Gibson, landscape business manager, Ball Horticultural Company
- Sean James, owner, Sean James Consulting and Design
- Barbara Wise, sales and marketing manager, Crescent Garden
The 2019 winners are:
Category I: Fewer than 10,000 Visitors per Year
First Place Winner: Master Gardener Association of Tippecanoe County (MGATC) Display Gardens, Lafayette, Indiana
The MGA of Tippecanoe Country was lauded as having the most all-encompassing use of the 2019 theme “Re-Use, Recycle, Re-Imagine” in this year’s competition. They used multiple items that might have gone to the landfill had they not been used in the garden as props and holders for AAS Winners. Even volunteer plants from their 2018 garden were incorporated into their theme!
Clear signage not only explained the theme, but also described how items were being re-used. The garden also explained and demonstrated to visitors how they could save money in their own gardens by reusing and recycling things such as plastic milk jugs, nesting boxes and old satellite dishes. The harvest from the AAS Edible Winners was donated to the local Salvation Army to feed the less fortunate.
Second Place Winner: Kenosha County Center AAS Display & Demonstration Garden, Kenosha, Wisconsin
Third Place Winner: Morris Horticulture Display Garden, Morris, Minnesota
Category II: 10,001 – 100,000 visitors per year
First Place Winner: Purdue Extension Marion County Demonstration Garden, Indianapolis, Indiana
For the third year in a row, the Purdue Extension group has knocked it out of the park. The drone video they created shows the superior plant quality and their impeccably maintained grounds. This demonstration garden is located at the Indiana Fair Grounds, so visitors not only saw a beautiful garden, but also were able to learn from the Master Gardeners.
Purdue Extension experts conducted several outreach programs for the community regarding the AAS varieties (old and new) and how to reduce, reuse, recycle and reimagine in their own gardens. To further engage visitors, they created a spinner wheel game showcasing their twelve most appealing AAS Winners. To play the game, one had to spin the wheel then go locate that variety in the garden.
Second Place Winner: Jardin Daniel A Seguin, Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada
TIE — Third Place Winner: Domaine Joly, Sainte-Crois, Quebec, Canada
TIE — Third Place Winner: McCrory Gardens, Brookings, South Dakota
Category III: Over 100,000 visitors per year
First Place Winner: Boerner Botanical Gardens, Milwaukee, Wisconsin (pictured above)
Kudos to the group at Boerner for pulling off a first place win this year! Their theme interpretation was called an “Alice in Wonderland” garden where many recycled and re-used products were made into props from the book: Hanging baskets became tea cups, AAS Gypsophila Winners formed a clock base, mushroom forms planted with AAS Pole Bean Winners, and old pallets became larger than life playing cards.
The garden took the opportunity to educate visitors about AAS via tours, an Ecology Conference and several onsite talks.
Second Place Winner: Norseco at Montreal Botanical Garden, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Third Place Winner: State Botanical Garden, Athens, Georgia
Each of these contest winners are profiled on the AAS website, under “Display Gardens”