The RHS pulled out of involvement following this June's event and has set up a rival show for 2017 at Chatsworth in Derbyshire.
Former RHS shows director Stephen Bennett is now working on the River Street Events-organised GWL and has appointed Oak Tree Nursery owner Cliff Plowes as the first nurseryman to be horticulture manager of a big garden event. The grasses specialist's last show after 20 years as an RHS Chelsea Flower Show exhibitor was in May 2015.
Bennett, now a freelance events manager having left the RHS after 28 years in 2013, said the Birmingham show is now free to change its judging, medals and exhibiting rules.
"It gives us freedom to come up with incentives for exhibitors to put up really good horticultural displays, enjoy full recognition and make GWL the biggest plant-selling show in the UK. It's going to be massively attractive to the UK nursery trade. It will be stimulating, fresh and different. We're not trying to mimic the RHS."
He said the new arrangements for staging and award systems aim to make the show more attractive to the gardening public and exhibitors alike. Exhibitors are "cock-a-hoop" with Plowes' appointment because "he is one of them and knows about exhibiting", added Bennett.
GWL is on 16-19 June 2016 and 15-18 June 2017. The first RHS Chatsworth Flower Show is on 7-11 June 2017.