Bord Bia announces medal winners at 10th annual Bloom festival

A record number of Gold medals have been awarded at Bloom 2016, which opened to the public today at Phoenix Park in Dublin.

Bord Bia announces Bloom 2016 winners. Image: Pixabay
Bord Bia announces Bloom 2016 winners. Image: Pixabay

The five-day festival, which is in its 10th year, celebrates food, horticulture and gardening. It was officially opened by President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins. 

The Overall Large Garden category award has gone to Alan Rudden from Westmanstown, Co. Dublin for his Chilean-inspired ‘Santa Rita Living la Vida 120 Garden’. The contemporary Latin American garden includes an alfresco dining area and a pool surrounded by Mediterranean arid planting.

Bloom first-timer James Purdy from Belfast won both the Overall Medium Garden category and Best Plant Design Award (new this year) for his 'Podscape Garden', which demonstrates a sustainable approach to everyday life.

Meanwhile Oliver and Liat Schurmann, renowned garden designers and owners of Mount Venus Nursery in Dublin won the Overall Small Garden category for ‘The Designer’s Back Yard’, an oasis for garden designers.

New to Bloom, University College Dublin won the Best Concept Garden for its ‘Evolution of Land Plants’garden designed by Dr. Caroline Elliot-Kingston and Nicola Haines. Finally, within the Floral and Nursery Pavilion, Boyne Garden Centre, Slane, Co. Meath won Best in Show.

Bloom's judging team was headed by Andrew Wilson, together with award-winning garden designers and the curator of the National Botanic Gardens. The panel awarded a total of 57 medals to show garden designers and nurseries including; 24 Gold, 12 Silver Gilt, 13 Silver and 8 Bronze.

Each of the judges acknowledged the exceptionally high standard of this year’s show gardens, with a record number of gold medals awarded across show gardens and nurseries.

This year's show features 23 show gardens, more than 100 Irish food and drink producers, 200 retailers and 50 of Ireland's top nurseries. Since the first year of the festival in 2007, the show has doubled in size to a 70 acre site. Almost 100,000 visitors are expected to attend this year, compared to just 40,000 in year one.

Show garden themes range from the 1916 Rising and the war in Syria, to social farming and the evolution of plants. Eight large gardens are on display this year, along with gardens from Chile, China and Chicago.

According to research by Bord Bia, the average annual Bloom spend is just over €7 million, including the purchase of some 90,000 plants. Irish consumers will also spend up to €30 million on gardening, foliage and landscaping in the months following the show.



Gold, Best in Category – Large: Santa Rita Living la Vida 120 Garden, sponsored by Santa Rita, designed by Alan Rudden

Gold, Best in Category – Medium: Podscape Garden, sponsored by Glenisk, designed by James Purdy

Gold, Best in Category – Small: The Designer's Back Yard, sponsored by Mount Venus Nursery and Valentia Slate, designed by Oliver and Liat Schurmann

Gold, Best in Category – Concept: UCD Evolution of Land Plants Garden, sponsored by UCD, designed by Dr Caroline Elliott-Kingston and Nicola Haines

Gold, Best in Show – Nursery Display: Boyne Garden Centre, Slane, Co.Meath



Large: Bridge the Gap, sponsored by the Chicago Park District and designed by Matthew Barrett

Large: Across Boundaries, sponsored by CEDRA Fund, The Irish Farmers' Association, The National Dairy Council, and Leitrim Development Company, designed  by Barry Kavanagh

Large: Crumlin Children’s Hospital Garden, sponsored by Kildare Growers, Bord na Móna, Moyvalley Stone and Peter O’Brien Landscapes, designed by Kieran Dunne and Anthony Ryan

Large: The Savills Garden - Face to Face, sponsored by Savills and designed by Andrew Christopher Dunne

Large: UCD Evolution of Land Plants Garden, sponsored by UCD, designed by Dr Caroline Elliott-Kingston and Nicola Haines

Medium: Podscape Garden, sponsored by Glenisk, designed by James Purdy

Medium: Serene Sanctuary, sponsored by Irish Country Magazine, designed by Alan Coffey in association with Alan Battersby

Small: The Legend of Tarzan, sponsored by Warner Brothers, designed by Oliver and Liat Schurmann


Large: Sculpture in the Parkland, sponsored by, designed by Ingrid Swan and Ruth Liddle

Medium: Bremore Castle Medieval Garden, sponsored and designed by Fingal County Council and Institute of Technology Blanchardstown

Medium: Out the Other Side: A Garden of Hope, sponsored by Marie Keating Foundation and ROCHE, designed by Tünde Szentesi


Medium: GOAL’s Damascus Courtyard -War and Peace, sponsored by GOAL, designed by Brian Burke

Medium: Well Centred, sponsored by Nangle & Neason and Charleville Cheese, designed by Hugh Ryan         
Medium: Blurred Lines, sponsored by Chef Sauce, designed by Sofi Dosa

Small: The Secret Life of Pets, sponsored by Universal and Sanctuary Synthetics, designed by Mark O’Loughlin


Small: Sharing the Load, sponsored by St. John of God Hospital and the Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, designed by Padraic Woods         

Small: The Tao of Now, sponsored by Eight Oaks Holistic, designed by Fiann Ó Nualláin      

Small: Solus Light Bulb Garden "Inspired by Ireland", sponsored by Solus Light Bulbs, designed by Alan Rudden



Hughes Roses, Garristown, Ardcath, Co.Dublin

Camolin Potting Shed, Camolin, Co.Wexford

Springmount Garden Centre, Ballycanew Road, Gorey, Co.Wexford

Boyne Garden Centre, Slane, Co.Meath

Plant Store, Tallaght, Dublin 24

Kilmurry Nursery, Gorey, Co.Wexford

Kells Bay House and Gardens, Kells, Cahersiveen, Co.Kerry

Fuchsiavale Nurseries, Worcestershire, UK

Plants Direct, Carbury, Co.Kildare

Irish Water Plants, Strokestown. Co.Roscommon

Mr Middleton Garden Shop, 58 Mary Street, Dublin 1

Harts Nursery, Alsager, UK

Peninsula Primulas, Ards, Co.Down

Teagasc, c/o National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin 9

Harrington Exotics, Saggart, Co. Dublin

W.S Warmenhoven, UK


Navan Garden Centre, Navan, Co.Meath

O’Reilly’s Nurseries, Mountnugent, Co.Cavan

Herb on Thyme, Rathangan, Co.Kildare

Heritage Bulbs, Glasnevin, Dublin 11

Premium Pelargoniums (Fuschiavale), UK

Glens Garden Gems, East Yorkshire, UK

Riverlane Nurseries, Trim, Co.Meath

Blackwater Floral Accessories, Mallow. Co.Cork

Three Gates Nursery and Florist, Naul, Co.Dublin


Dublin School of Horticulture, Dun Laoghaire, Co.Dublin

Garden Direct, Kilmeague, Co.Kildare

Shady Plants, Clashmore, Co.Waterford

Papervale Trees, Rathfriland, Co.Down

Greenart Production, Holland

AOIFA, Bray, Co.Wicklow

Landbarn Nursery, Gorey, Co.Wexford

Cois na Tra Plants, Westport, Co.Mayo


Devine Nurseries (Stand 1), East Yorkshire

Devine Nurseries (Stand 2), East Yorkshire

Western Plants Nursery, Skreen, Co.Sligo

Three Gates Nursery and Florist, Naul, Co.Dublin

Doran Nurseries (Irish Plants), Naas, Co.Kildare

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