Dec 19, 2023
NGB announces some 2024 Green Thumb Award winners

National Garden Bureau has announced the 2024 Green Thumb Award winners.

This year’s winners, for the first time, are in two categories: Professional’s Choice (voted upon by a panel of NGB members) and the new People’s Choice (voted upon by 10,000 individuals from the gardening public).

Winners of the 2024 Green Thumb Awards were chosen based on these four criteria: uniqueness, technological innovation, ability to solve a gardening problem or provide a gardening opportunity, and appeal to gardeners.

2024 Green Thumb Award Winners – Professional’s Choice

Shrub: Hydrangea First Editions Eclipse

Eclipse hydrangea is a true dark-leaf mophead hydrangea that offers season-long beauty with intense, dark purple leaves that hold their color, even in sunny warm climates. The striking foliage, paired with gorgeous dark purple or cranberry-colored blooms, will pair perfectly with anything in the garden and are sure to make a dramatic impact. Maturing at 3 to 5 feet tall and wide, Eclipse will stand out, whether used as a focal point in the garden or in decorative containers. From Bailey Nurseries/First Editions and is hardy in zones 5 to 9.

Perennial: Nepeta Chartreuse on the Loose

‘Chartreuse on the Loose’ is a perennial with season long interest perfect for lining the front of the border. The foliage allows for a full three seasons of interest with bright chartreuse yellow leaves. Clusters of lavender blue flowers are produced just above the foliage and appear all summer long. Unlike most catmint, ‘Chartreuse on the Loose’ will continue to produce flowers without being cut back. Hardy in USDA zones 3 to 8, this catmint is from Walters Gardens.

Annual (a tie resulted in two winners):

Begonia Stonehedge Rose Bronze Leaf

Stonehedge begonias from Ernst Benary of America are as iconic as their namesake, Stonehenge. These landscape begonias have extreme vigor and a well-branched mounded shape that grows up to 48 inches tall. Eye-catching bronze foliage shows off the rich rose blooms. Excellent heat tolerance and no need to dead-head so it is very low-maintenance. A premium product for your landscapes and large containers.

Centaurea The Bride

Large, pure white flowers with a gorgeous feathery texture that are scented with sweet vanilla. This variety is from Sahin/Takii EU. Bushy plants grow 2 to 3 feet tall and work well in containers or in beds and are pollinator friendly.

Edible: Cucumber Quick Snack (Dual winner in People’s Choice and Professional’s Choice)

The Kitchen Minis Collection of indoor-growing vegetables expands into a new class with Quick Snack cucumber, a deliciously crisp and sweet cucumber you can eat fresh off the plant, or add to a vegetable platter or salad. The plants produce handfuls of small, cocktail-sized cucumbers over a few weeks. They are an excellent way to enjoy homegrown vegetables without an outdoor garden space. The plant does not require pollinators to produce fruit. This variety is from Pan American Seed.

Houseplant: Echeveria Coral Reef Red (Dual winner in People’s Choice and Professional’s Choice)

It’s fun when the name defines the plant like the all new Coral Reef. Strongly pronounced ruffled foliage brings contrast and interest. Uniquely intense color both indoors and out! Elegant stems produce bell flowers through most of the year. This beauty is from Green Fuse Botanicals and grows just under 12 inches tall in full sun or shade and is drought tolerant.

2024 Green Thumb Award Winners – People’s Choice

Shrub: Better Boxwood Skylight

Better Boxwood is the first collection of scientifically bred blight-resistant boxwood. They are the result of two decades of revolutionary breeding and plant trialing. Skylight is one of four different varieties, including Babylon Beauty, Heritage and Renaissance, each with a unique size and form to fill any boxwood need. Skylight is faster growing with medium green leaves. It’s suitable for balls, in mass and medium hedges. From Concept Plants (via UpShoot Horticulture) and Plant Development Services, it is hardy to zone 5.

Perennial: Agapanthus Blackjack

Named RHS 2023 Plant of the Year, Blackjack offers superior performance and exceptional blooms in a color breakthrough: near-black, purple flower clusters soaring atop tall stems. This resilient agapanthus variety combines a compact semi-dwarf growth habit with abundant blooms, offering an extended flowering season surpassing conventional varieties. Ideal for Zones 8 to 11 from Concept Plants (via UpShoot Horticulture)  and Plant Development Services.

Annual: Petunia AMAZONAS Plum Cockatoo

Danziger’s brand-new AMAZONAS Plum Cockatoo petunia had heads turning at every trial experience. AMAZONAS Plum Cockatoo brings a bit of the rainforest to gardens everywhere. Lush, green hues pair with vivid, tropical purples to create a truly unique petunia. This unique variety brings a calming backdrop of natural color that pairs well with foliage plants in the garden. Large blooms grow on 12 to 18 inches tall, mounded plants.

If you would like more information about the Green Thumb Awards program or membership in National Garden Bureau, please contact NGB executive director Diane Blazek or send an email to

Latest Photos see all »

GPN recognizes 40 industry professionals under the age of 40 who are helping to determine the future of the horticulture industry. These individuals are today’s movers and shakers who are already setting the pace for tomorrow.