Friday 26 December 2014

Blooming lovely as temperatures set to rise for garden festival

Published 31/05/2014 | 02:30

John Eivers with his 6-month-old daughter Lauren at Bloom in the Phoenix Park , Dublin. Photo: Gary O Neill  Gary O Neill
John Eivers with his 6-month-old daughter Lauren at Bloom in the Phoenix Park , Dublin. Photo: Gary O Neill Gary O Neill
Ellen McVey (aged 4) and Alice McVey (aged 6) from Castleknock, Dublin at Bord Bias Bloom event taking place in the Phoenix Park which runs until Monday June 2nd. Credit Gary O' Neill
Ellen McVey (aged 4) and Alice McVey (aged 6) from Castleknock, Dublin at Bord Bias Bloom event taking place in the Phoenix Park which runs until Monday June 2nd. Credit Gary O' Neill
Wellbeing Wetlands inspired by Ocean Spray's Garden, designed by Alan Rudden & David Ryan Flowers and Gardening, as thousands of attendees enjoy Bloom 2014 Festival, in Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Photo credit: Artur Widak/PA Wire
The 'Designers Choice' award for this years Bloom has be announced and the winner is Andrew Christopher Dunne who designed the 'You Talk I Listen' Samaritans garden at Bloom 2014. Pictured is Andrew Christopher Dunne. Picture Nick Bradshaw
Flowers and gardening lovers enjoy Bloom 2014 Festival, in Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland. Photo credit: Artur Widak/PA Wire
Flowers and gardening lover Joyce Dellon enjoys Bloom 2014 Festival, in Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland. Photo credit: Artur Widak/PA Wire
Lilianna Nolan, two, enjoys Bloom 2014 Festival, in Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland. Photo credit Artur Widak/PA Wire
Eabha Maloney from Enniskerry, Co Wicklow. Photo: Nick Bradshaw / Gary O'Neill
John Eivers with his six month-old daughter Lauren at Bloom. Credit Gary O Neill
Philomena Gribben, from Sraffon Co. Kildare at Bloom for the second day of Bord Bias garden, food and family festival in the Phoenix Park, Dublin. Credit Gary O Neill
Thousands of visitors flooded into the Phoenix Park for the opening day of Bloom. Photo: Nick Bradshaw / Gary O'Neill
Ann McBride, from Shannon, Co Clare. Photo: Gary O Neill
Aoife Doyle (6) & Hannah Doyle (7) both from Carlow at the Barretstown & Glanbia garden " Sowing the Seeds of Magic..." at Bloom in the Phoenix Park , Dublin. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Aoife Doyle (6) & Hannah Doyle (7). Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Anna May, 5, from Trim enojys an ice cream at the Solus Garden the Home of Lighting at Bloom in the Phoenix Park , Dublin. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Enjoying the Floral Marquee were Cheryl Shaw and 3 year old daughter Elodie from Co Antrim. Picture Nick Bradshaw
Cheryl Shaw and 3 year old daughter Elodie from Co Antrim. Picture Nick Bradshaw
Enjoying the winning garden from Kevin Dennis was Katie Donovan (4) from Balgriffin, Dublin. Picture Nick Bradshaw
Elaine Dorly at Bloom. Photo: Gary O Neill
Sophie Clendenning (6) at Bloom. Photo: Credit Gary O Neill
Paul Doyle, Bloom Gold medal winner in his Concept Garden Messenger designed for the Jack and Jill Foundation. Photo: Credit Gary O Neill

IT'S not just about thousands of gardening aficionados checking out the best designs in the land – there is serious competition at the heart of Bloom in the Phoenix Park.

The festival showcases 30 exquisite show-gardens from the very best of Ireland's landscape gardeners and designers as well as over 120 food producers.

Judges spent over two days meticulously observing and deliberating before announcing the results, which saw multi-award-winning garden designer Kevin Dennis from Raheny in Dublin crowned overall winner for his garden, 'Green City Life'.

Roofs and walls planted with grasses, trees and perennials all contrasted against graffiti, steel and concrete for a garden fit for the realities of 21st-century city living.

Gary Graham, Bloom Show manager with Bord Bia, said the judges had been "blown away" by the standard of gardens at Bloom this year.

"The designers have shown great imagination, skill and dedication in producing their breath-taking creations," he said.

A gold medal in the medium garden category went to the special garden produced for the Samaritans, entitled 'You Talk, I'll Listen', designed by Andrew Christopher Dunne.

Gold in the small garden category went to 'Facing South: The Talbot Collection at Malahide', designed by Paul Foley. The small garden is a reflection of the eclectic collection of plants put together by Lord Milo Talbot at Malahide Castle Gardens.

In the 'concept garden' category, the gold medal went to the stunning 'Messenger' garden designed by Paul Doyle of Longstone Beacon Garden in Grange Con, west Wicklow for the Jack and Jill Foundation. The garden was opened to the public by talkshow host Brendan O'Connor. There were 11 gold medals awarded in the floral and nursery marquee, which showcases the very best of floral nurseries.

In the postcard garden category, the top prize went to the Irish Wildlife Trust – 'Our Natural Heritage'.

The festival in the Phoenix Park will run throughout the bank holiday weekend. Tickets can be bought at the gate or at www.bloominthepark.com. Children go free.

Irish Independent

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