Denver Botanic Gardens
Denver , CO USA
2nd place contest winner, III (over 100,000 visitors)
Norseco at Botanical Garden of Montreal
Montreal, QC CANADA
Participant contest winner, III (over 100,000 visitors)
Noelridge Park Gardens
Cedar Rapids , IA USA
2nd place contest winner, I (0-10,000 visitors)
Purdue Extension Tippecanoe County Display & Idea Gardens
Lafayette, IN USA
3rd place contest winner, I (0-10,000 visitors)
Univ of Wisconsin Spooner Ag Research Station Teaching and Display Garden
Spooner , WI USA
1st place contest winner, I (0-10,000 visitors)
Rotary Botanical Gardens
Janesville , WI USA
1st place contest winner, III (over 100,000 visitors)
Jardin Daniel A Seguin
Saint-Hyacinthe , QC CANADA
2nd place contest winner, II (10,000-100,000 visitors)
The Arboretum State Botanical Garden of Kentucky, University of Kentucky
Lexington , KY USA
1st place contest winner, II (10,000-100,000 visitors)
Royal Botanical Gardens
Burlington , ON CANADA
3rd place contest winner, III (over 100,000 visitors)
State Botanical Garden of Georgia
Athens , GA USA
3rd place contest winner, III (over 100,000 visitors)
Kenosha County Center Demonstration Garden
Bristol, WI USA
Participant contest winner, I (0-10,000 visitors)
Jennings Park, WSU Master Gardener Demo Garden
Marysville , WA USA
Participant contest winner, I (0-10,000 visitors)

Three years ago, All-America Selections (AAS) launched a new contest for almost 200 Display Gardens to encourage new and exciting landscaping ideas with AAS Winners. The success of the program has been beyond expectations and continues to grow and impress every year. 2014’s contest asked participants to expand on a theme of using containers in the landscape. 

This contest is a landscape design contest incorporating AAS Winners, past and present. Each garden is responsible for creating and executing the design, generating publicity surrounding the contest then submitting the photos, proof of publicity and an overall description of their design. All-America Selections is extremely pleased with not only the number of gardens that participated but also the broad range of garden types: large and small public gardens, seed companies, community gardens, master gardener programs and university gardens. All-America Selections salutes all the gardens and their impressive efforts to produce an attractive display of AAS Winners.

At the end of the season, each garden submitted photos of their displays which were used by our judges to determine the winning entries. Our esteemed judges were:

  • Jeff Gibson, Landscape Business Manger, Ball Horticultural Company
  • Bruce Hellerick, Senior Horticulture Specialist, The Brickman Group
  • Susan Schmitz, Trials and Education Manager, Ball Horticultural Company
  • Barbara Wise, author and Director of Floriculture, Landscape Services, Inc.

We are pleased to present the 2014 winners in each category, based on number of garden visitors per year.

To see additional photos from the winners, please click through the slide show above. To see photos from all the participants, please see our Facebook page or Flickr account.

Category I (0-10,000 visitors)

1st place: Univ of Wisconsin Spooner Ag Research Station Teaching and Display Garden

Spooner , WI USA

“Down on the Farm” was the theme for this Display Garden, celebrating family farmers who survived through hard work and ingenuity. Using salvaged typical household items, they organized and planted garden rooms then filled and interspersed those items with AAS Winners to provide a riot of color. Judges gave this garden high rankings because of the number of AAS Winners used along with the unique props that helped tell an educational story. Then to top it off, Spooner did a fantastic job of spreading the word among their local community via Social Media, radio, newspapers, their own website, e-newsletters and with the University of Wisconsin’s Extension programs.

2nd place: Noelridge Park Gardens

Cedar Rapids , IA USA

Beautiful, elegant and artistic is how the judges described the AAS display at Noelridge Park Gardens. Highlighting this garden were the many structures and containers handcrafted from native willow branches—all done by their volunteers! Multiple groups collaborated together on this project that not only resulted in a beautiful community garden but also numerous articles by local media, informational sessions by Master Gardeners and ongoing Social Media updates about the garden and events being held at the garden.

3rd place: Purdue Extension Tippecanoe County Display & Idea Gardens

Lafayette, IN USA

This Display Garden used an impressive 60 different AAS Winners, including Gold Medal Winners from past years, in their 24 Idea Gardens. To garner community participation, garden planners invited the public to participate in a Container Design contest where they granted awards in each of these categories: Best Use of AAS Winners, Most Colorful, Most Unusual and Overall Best Plant Display. An Open House held in August showed off the AAS flowers and vegetables at their peak.

Participant: Kenosha County Center Demonstration Garden

Bristol, WI USA

Honorable Mention, “Best Inspiration” Garden: Kenosha County Center Demonstration Garden, Bristol, Wisconsin. Judges just couldn’t let this year go by without giving an extra special shout out to this first-year Display Garden in Kenosha for their many inspiring garden ideas. In one small plot, they used a rattan chair frame, a wicker wastebasket, a wire trellis, a palette as a vertical garden and other household items to support their theme of “Inside Out.”

Participant: Jennings Park, WSU Master Gardener Demo Garden

Marysville , WA USA

Honorable Mention, “Most Creative” Garden: Jennings Park, WSU Master Gardener Demo Garden, Marysville, Washington. The first word used to describe this garden is “Creative” and thus, a special award to Jennings Park for their outstanding creativity. Garden planners used a number of ideas and items to make this garden come alive with color as well as signage that helped show the beauty and usefulness of AAS Winners.

Category II (10,000-100,000 visitors)

1st place: The Arboretum State Botanical Garden of Kentucky, University of Kentucky

Lexington , KY USA

Located next to the University of Kentucky’s All-America Selections trial bed, this display made great use of the 2014 container theme. With multiple large, square containers lining the main walkway, and numerous other containers positioned in strategic spots, thirty four AAS Winners gracefully filled the containers and borders with glorious color. Adding edibles to the garden showed how containers, edibles and flowers can seamlessly work in harmony in a well-designed garden.

2nd place: Jardin Daniel A Seguin

Saint-Hyacinthe , QC CANADA

With a theme of urban ag, this AAS Display Garden took advantage of the opportunity to promote urban agriculture to their visitors as well as to the general public with their public relations work. By using nineteen AAS Winners and strategically placed container gardens, the garden transformed rigid linear flower beds into beautiful spaces showing how flowers and edibles can peacefully co-exist in an urban garden.

Category III (over 100,000 visitors)

1st place: Rotary Botanical Gardens

Janesville , WI USA

Rotary knocked another one out of the ballpark with this year’s “Pollinator’s Paradise” theme using almost 90 AAS Winner varieties and repurposed containers for an overall earth-friendly theme. The contest was promoted in the garden’s blog an amazing 17 times, in addition to radio show talks, press releases, local garden magazine stories and more. Judges raved about the creatively designed short, medium and tall containers and the excellent use of color in three separate ways: drifts in the landscape, in the many containers and as solitary specimen varieties.

2nd place: Denver Botanic Gardens

Denver , CO USA

Set among the many beautiful areas of the Denver Botanic Garden is the aptly named “AAS Garden” where landscape designers chose AAS Winners in colors to reflect the time of day. The first Sunrise Bed features hot colors that light up as the sun appears. The second Sunrise Bed features vegetables and annuals with a large container as the centerpiece. In the garden area where weddings are held, guests are able to reflect on the Twilight Bed with cool-colored annuals. Lastly is the Sunset Bed where a symphony of colors plays their last hurrah as the sun sets.

3rd place: Royal Botanical Gardens

Burlington , ON CANADA

Third Place *TIE* Winner: Royal Botanical Gardens, Burlington, Ontario. RBG took a formerly flat grassy area and transformed it into an AAS paradise with three large arching beds accented by four creatively designed and placed container gardens. The middle of the AAS Display Garden featured the newest AAS Winners, flanked by two equal sized beds that featured AAS Winners from past years. Artfully positioned in and around these three beds were various containers featuring additional AAS Winners spilling over to make a beautiful floral statement.

3rd place: State Botanical Garden of Georgia

Athens , GA USA

Third Place *TIE* Winner: State Botanical Garden of Georgia, Athens, Georgia. The State Botanical Garden took a sensual approach to the garden emphasizing flowing lines and the visual impact it makes when standing on a nearby overlook. AAS Winners were planted in both waves and circles to create a soothing appearance as well as a mix of textures. Judges liked that approach as well as the handouts the garden created for visitors that explain the AAS Mission and trialing process.

Participant: Norseco at Botanical Garden of Montreal

Montreal, QC CANADA

Honorable Mention, “Most Artistic” Garden: Norseco at the Botanical Garden of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec. This is the first year that horticulture company Norseco has had their Display Garden in such a high-traffic location such as the Botanical Garden of Montreal. This means a new opportunity to educate a large number of visitors about AAS Winners. They accomplished this with multiple beds artistically designed then named by the dominant colors in that area. Garden designers used some older, taller AAS Winners to provide that visual interest with height.