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Charlie Dimmock's pick of the Barchester Bunch!

Rivermead staff collecting their trophy

Six fantastic winners proved there is no place like gnome at this year’s Barchester in Bloom gardening awards, hosted by celebrity gardener, Charlie Dimmock, at the bloomin’ marvellous Birmingham Botanical Gardens.

The gnome-themed event held on 6th November was a lively celebration of gardening excellence across the country. Staff and residents from the homes who had made it through to the finals came along to hear the winners of all six categories announced.

Barchester in Bloom, organised by national quality care provider Barchester Healthcare, promotes the imaginative planting of flowers, trees and shrubs in the gardens of all of its care homes across the UK.

The six winners at this year’s Barchester in Bloom competition are:

  • Best Hanging Basket or Container – White Lodge in Swindon
  • Best Floral or Vegetable Arrangement – Lynde House in Richmond
  • Best Community Garden or Project –  Oulton Park in Suffolk
  • Best Sensory Garden – Seaview House in Wick
  • Best Resident’s Garden or Project – Challoner House in Eastleigh
  • Barchester Garden of the Year 2014 – Rivermead in North Yorkshire (pictured)

Charlie handed out the winners’ trophies with Pete Calveley, CEO at Barchester, and she said: “Barchester in Bloom inspires me every time and it’s great to be part of this tradition. These awards highlight how sharing, enthusiasm and passion for gardens can come together to transform a home.”

Charlie also gave some really useful gardening tips during a Q&A session, a new addition to the awards ceremony. There were lots of questions on all kinds of gardening issues, such as fish ponds, pruning and snails.

One great tip Charlie shared about improving your garden’s appearance in the colder months was: “Make your evergreen borders more eye-catching during the winter by planting Pittosporums, such as ‘Tom Thumb’, which is a dark purple and adds a contrasting colour, or accent foliage plants like Phormium and Fatsia.”