Awards for 2022

For the Best of the Year Awards, the gardener usually picks one rose, one shrub, one perennial, one cat, one dog... But then the garden gets a bit noisy. What about me? And me? Why don't I get the prize? Aww. That's not fair. Just because I flop over in the rain. You never pick meeeeee...

 From the top left corner, clockwise : Rambling Rector, Phormium, Rhododendron, Daylily, Weeping Silver Pear, NZ Gardener rose, Charles Austin Roses, Lychnis, Periwinkle, Orlaya, Iris, Gunnera.
Past Award Winners

So this year, moving in a new direction, I'm giving awards to the 'Almost-Best's, choosing winners from the less significant plants, the less well-behaved animals, and so on. The natural winners (like annual Orlaya, Rambling Rector rose, Weeping Silver Pear tree - you all know who you are) can take a break. My awards for 2022 will feature participants who always do their best, but don't quite get there, for one reason or another.

The Almost Best Rose of 2022 : Climbing Masquerade.

 By the patio.
Masquerade Roses

Well done in your flowering this spring. But you have things to work on - leaf health, for one. Try to bush out more and not be so spindly.

The Almost Best Flowering Annual of 2022 : Self Sown Calendulas

 Very yellow!

Thanks for looking so cheerful and flowering for most of the year. A little more variety in flower colour would be nice.

The Almost Best Shrub of 2022 : Camellia Gay Baby

 Pretty pink flowers,
Gay Baby Camellias

Your pretty pink flowers, although quite small, always brighten up the spring garden. Try not to let cheeky comments about your name affect your performance.

The Almost Best Dog of 2022 : Pebbles

 Trying hard not to bark at me!
Pebbles the Dog

Well done Pebbles, you always try to do your best, and there's been much less rude barking this year. But remember - you do not need to go out the door first.

The Almost Best Cat of 2022 : Speckles the Stray

 At home outside my cottage.
Speckles the Stray Cat

There's room for improvement in your attendance, Speckles. And you must try to embrace the sweet, loving cat inside you. Less hissing would be a great goal for next year.

Inclusive and Diverse...

This garden is committed to being inclusive and diverse, and the following Award will hopefully reflect this.

The Almost Best Variegated Plant : Variegated Corokia

 A New Zealand native shrub.
Variegated Corokia

Great work in the garden this year, filling gaps without causing a fuss. A real team-player. Well done.

 And the gardener...
The Kitchen Breadknife

Garden tools category...

Finally, a garden isn't all about showy flowers and greenery. Garden tools play a major part in maintaining order and letting the beauty within shine through.

The Almost Best Garden Accessory : The kitchen breadknife

A revelation! You are wasted in the kitchen drawer. Great work chopping down dead flax leaves, slicing through fern roots, while still staying sharp enough to do the bread business.

And much gratitude from the Head Gardener for keeping your outdoors activities a secret...


Congratulations to all the Almost-Winners!