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A golden start to Bloom for the garden designers who won medals for their displays

The judging panel announced 78 awards for show garden designers, nurseries, floral artists, botanical art and amateur garden designers

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Kerrie Gardiner, Show Garden Manager Bord Bia Bloom and Tara McCarthy, Chief Executive Bord Bia present designer Niall Deacon with a Gold Medal for the Eureka Garden

Kerrie Gardiner, Show Garden Manager Bord Bia Bloom and Tara McCarthy, Chief Executive Bord Bia present designer Niall Deacon with a Gold Medal for the Eureka Garden

Tara McCarthy, Chief Executive Bord Bia and Kerrie Gardiner, Show Garden Manager Bord Bia Bloom presents designers Seán O’Malley and Oisín Griffin with a Gold Medal for the Pathways to Home Garden

Tara McCarthy, Chief Executive Bord Bia and Kerrie Gardiner, Show Garden Manager Bord Bia Bloom presents designers Seán O’Malley and Oisín Griffin with a Gold Medal for the Pathways to Home Garden

Designers Seán O’Malley and Oisín Griffin with their Gold Medal for the Pathways to Home Garden

Designers Seán O’Malley and Oisín Griffin with their Gold Medal for the Pathways to Home Garden

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Kerrie Gardiner, Show Garden Manager Bord Bia Bloom and Tara McCarthy, Chief Executive Bord Bia present designer Niall Deacon with a Gold Medal for the Eureka Garden

Bloom in the Phoenix Park got off to a golden start for some first-time show garden designers who were awarded medals for their outstanding displays at the festival.

Among the designers who are new to the event and were awarded gold medals were: Niall Deacon; Sean Russell’s as well as  Seán O’Malley and Oisín Griffin.

Meanwhile seasoned show garden designers Andrew Christopher Dunne and Alan Rudden took the coveted best in category awards for large and medium gardens, bringing their total gold medals at Bloom to four and seven respectively.

The overall large show garden award was presented to Andrew Christopher Dunne for Hit Pause, The Caragh Nurseries Garden and the best in category medium show garden was awarded to Alan Rudden for the Savills Urban Oasis Garden.

Mike Neary, Director of Horticulture, Bord Bia said “The judges were hugely impressed by the attention to detail, quality of planting and sense of atmosphere created in this year’s displays.

"For many, more time spent at home over the last two years has resulted in a new-found appreciation for our outdoor spaces as we realised the benefits of gardening for our mental and physical wellbeing.

"This year’s gardens embrace this trend and celebrate the role of the garden as a place for relaxing and connecting with nature, while also providing an engaging outdoor room to entertain friends and connect with family.”

The judging panels this year included 15 Irish and international horticultural experts, who today announced 78 awards for show garden designers, nurseries, floral artists, botanical art and amateur garden designers including 22 Gold, 17 Silver Gilt, 17 Silver, 13 Bronze and 9 certificates of commendation.

Speaking about his overall large garden award, Andrew Christopher Dunne said, “Hit Pause is inspired by an appreciation for our gardens and outdoor spaces, which many of us discovered during the past two years. As we were forced to hit pause on our lives, it awakened a creativity within us and a passion for all things outdoors. This garden hopes to encourage this new-found enthusiasm by demonstrating some of the key principles of good design which can be employed in any space.”

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Many of the show gardens created at this year’s Bloom were designed to be accessible for amateur gardeners in order to provide those with a new-found interest in gardening with tips and tools to enhance their outdoor space.

Andrew’s garden showcases a number of design principles to inspire gardeners, including simplicity of palette, repetition, and the use of colour, form and texture.

There were a total of 10 gold medals awarded to nurseries exhibiting at this years event. The judges presented the Best in Show Nursery Award to Oliver and Liat Schurmann of Mount Venus Nursery for an impressive display of hardy garden perennials, trees and shrubs in the new Nursery Village .

In the AOIFA Floral Art competition Maureen Fagan from Maynooth Flower and Garden Club, Kildare received Best in Show for her class entry, ‘Phenomenal Forms’; Anne McLeod from Coolree in Wexford received the Best in Show floral art award for her work entitled ‘Japanese anemones in the mist’; and Shevaun Doherty from Broadford, Kildare received the overall botanical art award for her work entitled ‘Take a Breath’.

St. Mary’s Community Gardening Group in Clondalkin were awarded Best in Show for their amateur gardening display in the Postcard Garden area of the show. These small, but perfectly formed gardening showcases feature exhibits telling the stories of charities and community groups.

The event continues in the Phoenix Park until Monday 6 June. The festival is set to attract over 100,000 visitors this year and features 19 show gardens, 9 postcard gardens, over 80 Irish food and drink producers, 18 plant nurseries, 25 live cookery demonstrations with some of Ireland’s best-known chefs and some 130 retailers, all within a 70-acre site.


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