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GMG Awards Logo

The Garden Media Guild Awards 2017: Awards Winners

Previous winners: | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 |

You can view all the images from the Awards Lunch here

 

All images Copyright Jayne Lloyd

The Peter Seabrook Practical Book of the Year Award

No Dig Organic Home & Garden by Charles Dowding and Stephanie Hafferty

The Peter Seabrook Practical Book of the Year Award

Judges’ comments

The judges were bowled over by the sheer volume of useful information in this comprehensive book. Written with obvious passion by people who practice what they preach, it's full of immensely logical and clear explanations that don't baffle with technical terms. The useful key tables and clear, informative photos all add to this hugely practical book. It is perfect for anyone interested in growing their own veg and making the most of their harvests without needing to dig.

Finalists

The Garden Photography Workshop by Andrea Jones
Big Ideas Small Spaces by Kay Maguire & Tony Woods
The Jam Maker's Garden by Holly Farrell
Charles Dowding's Vegetable Garden Diary by Charles Dowding
Gardening on the Menu by Martin and Jill Fish

Reference Book of the Year

Ancient Oaks by Aljos Farjon

Reference Book of the Year

Judges’ comments

This is an encyclopaedic reference book that appears to have all the possible information and references on ancient oaks and will be a useful reference book for generations to come. Beautifully written with striking photos. The historical and cultural significance of the ancient oak tree is wonderfully detailed with something new to learn in almost every paragraph. A truly remarkable piece of work, which celebrates how the oak has shaped the English landscape. Excellent production valuesand a riveting read, with immense scholarship. A really impressive book, which encompassed an enormous amount of research, and about whose merit we were unanimous.

Finalists

Essential Pruning Techniques by Tony Kirkham and George E Brown (now deceased)
How Not To Kill Your Houseplant by Veronica Peerless
Meconopsis for gardeners by Christopher Grey-Wilson
Hedera: The Complete Guide by Hugh McAllister and Rosalyn Marshall

Inspirational Book of the Year

Head Gardeners by Ambra Edwards

Inspirational Book of the Year
For books that inspire the gardener to something new, whether that’s travel tales, biographies, inspirational plant journeys, diaries, stories or beautiful ‘coffee table’ tomes.

Judges’ comments

This book offered a refreshing antidote to the glamorous world of garden designers and owners, or gardener biographies/autobiographies. Its focus, which is long overdue, is the people who make gardens happen. Ambra’s writing is elegant, incisive and inspiring. The introduction is a passionate but reasoned exposé of the shortcomings that blight the prospects for a career in horticulture and sets the scene for chapters on a diverse selection of 13 head gardeners. The humorous and fascinating text offers a rare insight into what it takes to dedicate one’s life to gardening and operate at the top end of horticulture – which many visitors and some employers can all too easily overlook. It is beautifully illustrated by Charlie Hopkinson’s excellent photographs, which draw you into the daily working lives of those featured in an almost visceral way. Of all the books judged, this one should have the greatest impact, in reversing an often negative and stereotypical image of gardening as a career, by offering an alternative view - trumpeting one of this country’s greatest creative industries and throwing open the door to a career and lifestyle choice like no other.

Finalists

The London Garden Book A-Z by Abigail Willis
Plot 29 a memoir by Allan Jenkins
The Thoughtful Gardener by Jinny Blom
Gardening for Mindfulness by Holly Farrell

Garden Publication of the Year

The English Garden, edited by Clare Foggett

Garden Publication of the Year

Judges’ comments

Beautiful, beautiful photography, I really wanted to read it! Impeccably curated, this title has an outstanding sense of both its own identity and that of its reader. The garden design is presented in a very accessible way, quite a trick for such an inspirational title.

Finalists

Rakesprogress Magazine, edited by Tom Loxley & Victoria Gaiger
Gardens Illustrated, edited by Lucy Bellamy
Garden Answers, edited by Liz Potter
BBC Gardeners' World Magazine, edited by Lucy Hall

The Dr David Hessayon Garden Columnist of the Year Award

Katherine Swift for Last Word in The English Garden

The Dr David Hessayon Garden Columnist of the Year Award

Judges’ comments

These five journalists impressed us with the clarity and range of their writing. We found them all to be informative and inventive, even profound. But one columnist’s high quality, lyrical writing stood out for us. Her column in The English Garden magazine blends deep horticultural knowledge with the bravery to ask – and answer – that very big question; what is gardening all about?

Finalists

James Alexander-Sinclair for Design Ideas in Gardens Illustrated
Alan Titchmarsh for Tales from Titchmarsh in BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Jojo Tulloh for Gardener Cook in Gardens Illustrated
Dawn Isaac for her Gardening Column in Cambridge Independent

News Journalist of the Year

Nick Triggle for Can gardening save the NHS? In BBC Gardeners' World Magazine

News Journalist of the Year

Judges’ comments

Nick’s punchy headline, engaging writing style and well researched feature got straight to the heart of the matter. Delivering key facts about the wider benefits of horticulture, it highlighted proven replicable solutions to support the health and wellbeing of the nation.

Finalists

Graham Rice for Wild chocolate cosmos "alive and well" in Mexico in The Garden
Jodie Jones for 50th Anniversary Special issue content in BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Marc Rosenberg for Shop-bought carrot seedlings likely to fail in Amateur Gardening
Ian Hodgson for Bio control of weeds expands in Garden News

Alan Titchmarsh for Success articles in BBC Gardeners' World Magazine

Practical Journalist of the Year

Judges’ comments

The judges felt that Alan Titchmarsh's articles showed his incredible capacity for communication, in a way that is always interesting and absorbing, but above all useful. The pieces submitted were beautifully written. It’s not always easy to be elegant with such down-to earth subjects, but he somehow succeeds in making them enlightening and riveting

Finalists

Sue Carter for articles in Rakesprogress Magazine
Kirsty Ramage for articles in Gardens Illustrated
Val Bourne for articles in Amateur Gardening
Charles Dowding for articles in Country Smallholding

Journalist of the Year

Matthew Appleby for articles in Horticulture Week

Journalist of the Year

Judges’ comments

Matthew Appleby gave us good old-fashioned investigative journalism. He gave us a through insight into the way that Bunnings is going to affect the garden centre trade. His article on planting for bees featured new and surprising research results. While the feature on roses was equally strong. With the exception of Tom Loxley, no other journalist gave us three articles of equal strength, and Matthew’s research had the edge.

Finalists

Tom Loxley for articles in Rakesprogress Magazine
Val Bourne Journalist The Daily Telegraph
Nigel Colborn Journalist The Garden

The Gordon Rae Photographer of the Year Award

Clive Nichols

The Gordon Rae Photographer of the Year Award

Judges’ comments

There was hardly a whisker between the five shortlisted photographers, but Clive Nichols stood out for the range of his subject matter and the high photographic content within each of several different disciplines. We welcomed a black-and-white image and a portrait of a gardener within his portfolio of garden pictures.

Finalists

Jürgen Becker
Jason Ingram
Annette Lepple
Richard Bloom

View the winning images

Features Photographer of the Year

Kevin Mackintosh for Modern Masters in Rakesprogress Magazine

Features Photographer of the Year

Judges’ comments

The winner of this very well subscribed category pushed boundaries and the result was a memorable feature of unique distinction. There was no room for error with this shoot and the images made a lasting impression. The entry represents the art of photography and the patience and skill that the person behind the lens needs to succeed. Each image deserves to be framed. A visually arresting and unusual way of looking at gourds and veg, showing invention and great understanding of composition and use of light. There is a sensitivity to shape, colour and texture along with an originality, creativity and competence of technique that combined well to make a memorable feature. This was a dark horse that wowed the judges. The judges were thrilled to be offered something so forward thinking.

Finalists

Dianna Jazwinski for The Passionate Gardener - Scented Pelargoniums in Country Living
Richard Bloom for A late blooming in Gardens Illustrated
Richard Bloom for Tree Hugger in Garden Design
Claire Takacs for Art of the Unexpected in Gardens Illustrated

View the winning images

Book Photographer of the Year

Marcus Harpur for The Secret Gardens of East Anglia

Book Photographer of the Year

Judges’ comments

This celebrates the diversity of featured gardens through the use of beautifully composed and skillfully captured photography. Plants, buildings and living details have all been considered and included. The use of colour is also sympathetic to each garden style. Gardens shot across a range of seasons made this book stand out. The dedication to seek out these contrasting images made this book a clear winner. Every shot felt like a showcase – from magnificent vistas to grass glades; every shot held its glory in unbias balance.

Finalists

Charlie Hopkinson for Head Gardeners
Jürgen Becker for Avantgardening
Elke Borkowski for Frauen und ihre Garten

The Roy Lancaster TV Broadcast of the Year Award

Gardeners’ World: Oxford Botanics, Producer Paolo Proto

The Roy Lancaster TV Broadcast of the Year Award

Judges’ comments

This is a brilliant film on biological control of aphids using parasitic wasps. It is science meets horticulture and stood head and shoulders above the rest. As the world looks for alternatives to pesticides, this made this such a timely programme. A very complete piece of horticultural science with practical and clear information that kept the viewer on edge all the way through. It uses sophisticated filming resources to inform the viewer and gardener. It also ticked all the boxes in terms of creating perfectly smooth sequences linking the stories all the way through.

Finalists

Gardeners’ World: Evolution of garden design, Producer Paolo Proto
How To Grow Beetroot, Presenter Charles Dowding

Radio Broadcast of the Year

BBC Newcastle: Garden Mania Christmas Capability, Producer Marian Foster

Radio Broadcast of the Year

Judges’ comments

This broadcast was topical in terms of locality and time, being a Christmas special on Capability Brown in the year of his 300 anniversary. There was a good range of indoor and outdoor sites with a series of speakers and groups. This broadcast told the story clearly and well, and left the listener well informed.

Finalists

The Sodshow, Presenter Peter Donegan
The RHS Members' Podcast, Gareth Richards RHS Media
This Week in the Garden with Peter Seabrook
On the Ledge Podcast, Jane Perrone

Environmental Award

Stephanie Mahon for features on design for wellbeing and sustainability in the Garden Design Journal

Environmental Award

Judges’ comments

Taking a unique angle, the journalist draws attention to the unusual combination of design for improved human health and wellbeing, coupled with sustainable development that contributes to environmental enhancement of existing life situations. Using skilfully incorporated quotations from interviewees, the author presents each story from a designed landscape that embraces a cancer care centre, to an innovative food-growing structure for a vertical urban community, to a back garden design for use in impoverished communities that captures the readers’ interest. Through these well-written and beautifully illustrated articles, the author achieved her stated intent to engage and encourage professional designers to consider a more sustainable and environmental focus to their work.

Finalists

Iain Parkinson for Making A Meadow in Kew Magazine
Stephanie Pain for Thought For Food and An Appetite For Orchids in Kew Magazine
Jon Drori for Locally Sourced Success in Kew Magazine

The Alan Titchmarsh New Talent Award

Charlotte Petts, Presenter of Growing Wild on Radio Reverb

The Alan Titchmarsh New Talent Award

Judges’ comments

Ultimately, Charlotte won out with original, rich content, relevant to novices and keen gardeners alike, drawing out fascinating narratives from her interviewee’s without saying too much herself.

Finalists

Lee Burkhill
Annabelle Padwick
Tony Woods
Arit Anderson

Blog of the Year

Jack Wallington, www.jackwallington.com

Blog of the Year

Judges’ comments

The judges were delighted to see so many entries this year. With the large number of garden blogs available online, we were looking for either a general gardening blog that stood head and shoulders above the others in every respect, or a blog with a unique voice, a different perspective. A passion for gardening was evident in every blog we read, so the top five had to have more than that: so we scored highly for good quality images, easy navigation and regular (if not necessarily frequent) updates. These, as well as good, informative writing encourage viewers and draw more people to this exciting way of sharing gardening. Our overall winner was a good all-round blog, well laid out to guide the new reader, and not only entertaining and informative, but inspirational too.

Finalists

Beth Otway, www.pumpkinbeth.com
Michelle Hurford, www.thebohemianraspberry.com<
Nic Wilson, dogwooddays.net
Jill Anderson, www.growingnicely.co.uk

Website of the Year

www.gardenersworld.com, edited by Daniel Haynes

Website of the Year

Judges’ comments

Our stand-out winner met most of the criteria exceptionally well. It is extremely appealing visually with great pictures and lots of inspirational colour and it uses the unique qualities of online media very well. We particularly liked the plant-finder feature, which we felt had wide appeal to both novices and enthusiasts, and it is updated regularly with jobs to do each month. The video content was also good, giving lots of how-to advice. The site is easy to navigate and the search facility worked well with content being loaded quickly. We felt the content and style of presentation was very relevant to the target audience.

Finalists

www.alitex.co.uk, edited by Tash Ellens
www.richardjacksonsgarden.co.uk, published by Richard Jackson
www.learningwithexperts.com/gardening, founded by Elspeth Briscoe
www.theenglishgarden.co.uk, edited by Clare Foggett

New Media of the Year

SmartPlant Technology, George Williams

New Media of the Year

Judges’ comments

This was a very close contest. Although in its infancy, the winning app is demonstrating an inviting and new way to engage both the plant lover and the novice, while at the same time encouraging customer loyalty for the retailer. The information was very clearly laid out and since each plant was targeted individually, the user has focused and relevant information ready to hand without the need to search. SmartPlant Technology has impressed us with its innovative approach to plant identification and care. It takes a creative approach and makes best use of its new media format. We found the app accessible and easy to use.

Finalists

BBC Gardeners' World Magazine App, edited by Lucy Hall

Lifetime Achievement Award

Richard Jackson

Lifetime Achievement Award
Awarded to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution throughout their lifetime to the profession, voted for by Garden Media Guild members and gifted by the GMG Committee.

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