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Beautiful Borders garden design competition

Design a Beautiful Border in 2021 

With a record-breaking number of Beautiful Borders in 2019, this unique garden design competition continues to grow in stature and prominence. A springboard into garden design and Show Garden design, it is an unparalleled opportunity to show off skills, create a unique portfolio piece, rise to a new challenge and meet potential new clients.

The 2021 theme is Flower Power - unleashing opportunities for boundless colour, flamboyance and inspiration.

Will you take part in 2021? Creating a border of just a few meters squared, the Beautiful Border competition is ideal for emerging gardeners and designers, horticulture students and gardening groups. It's an exceptional way to experience the design, planning and build of a horticultural exhibit in a show environment, without the large financial and resource commitment of a show garden. 

Note: Accepted applications for the 2020 Show will be rolled over to 2021. If you have any queries about this, please get in touch via

If you would like to apply, the deadline is 27 January 2021. 

Standard Application Form >

BBC Gardeners' World Magazine Subscriber Application Form >

The theme: Flower Power

The theme: Flower Power

Flowers and plants have the power to make us happy often with a rich palette of colour and scent, they can keep us healthy, and can bring us together in our communities. They act as pollinators, are critical for wildlife, and are even edible! 

Will your border inspiration be stimulated by the original era of Flower Power? Be a space simply celebrating flora using a variety of annuals, perennials, trees or shrubs or will it reflect the Power of Flowers for wildlife, health/wellbeing, biodiversity? 

Tell us where your border would be located, be it in your garden, a community space, school, or even a stately home.

Best Beautiful Border 2019

Kate Mason, Platinum Award and Best Border winner 2019

“If you are considering doing a Beautiful Border, don't consider it, just do it. You won't regret it! Since the show my business has gone crazy, the BBC Gardeners' World name is highly respected and means people have even more faith in my ability. I plan on developing my business further and continuing to learn as much as I can along the way. I hope one day to secure a sponsor and complete a full-sized show garden.”

Natalie Forklin, Silver Merit Award 2018

Natalie Forklin, Silver Merit Award 2018

"I loved the whole experience – hard work, physically demanding, hot and sweaty but so rewarding seeing it all come together. Even better was the reaction of the visitors. Everyone was so positive and really interested in the plants, the ideas that they could take home to their own gardens"

Read more in Natalie's blog >

Kate Mason Beautiful Border

Kate Mason, Platinum Award 2019

“I hope you'll understand that to tell you about my beautiful border I need to tell you a little about me. This is not something I would have found easy a few years ago, but now I want everyone to know how gardening changed my life.” 

Read more in Kate's blog >



See some of our favourite bits from the Beautiful Borders at BBC Gardeners' World Live over the years.

best gardeners world magazine subscriber border

Awards 2019

Browse the list of who won the coveted awards in 2019, including Best in Show and Best Interpretation of a Theme.
The Awards

The Awards

The prestigious Awards Ceremony, held as part of the Press Preview event includes the presentation of PlatinumGold, Silver Merit, Silver and Bronze Awards plus the much-anticipated awards

  • Best Beautiful Border
  • Best Interpretation of the Theme
  • Best Gardeners' World Magazine Subscriber Border

 Presented by the Chair of the Garden Assessment Panel and attended by key members of the press, this is a sparkling event to attend.

View the 2019 Awards >

Carol Klein says...

Carol Klein says...

I simply love to see the creativity bursting out of each Beautiful Borders at BBC Gardeners’ World Live - it’s what flower shows are all about – encouraging up and coming garden designers and giving them the chance to present their ideas and originality to a hordes of people! For the designers it’s a brilliant way to get themselves noticed and network with potential new clients, and for the visitors they’re packed with ideas for smaller gardens.”

Martin Lines, designer of Fire & Ice, the ‘Best Beautiful Border’ in 2016 said: “This is a major development in my design career and I would like to thank River Street Events, the APL, and BBC Gardeners’ World Live for giving me this wonderful opportunity to show case myself as a professional and unique designer in my own right and to represent Lanwarne Landscapes in such an exciting way."

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