Celebrating 17 Years of Beauty: A Look at the Winners and Commended Entries of the International Garden Photographer of the Year Competition

Source Design You Trust 

Masaki Ito | Highly commended, Beautiful Gardens | A Smell So Sweet, Aichi prefecture, Japan

“The many hanging blooms of wisteria smelt so sweet as they reflected in the pond at a garden near to my house. When the flowers bloom in April, it signifies my birthday has arrived again”

The International Garden Photographer of the Year competition is an annual celebration of the art of garden photography. Now in its 17th year, the competition continues to grow with a growing number of special awards and partnerships with prestigious UNESCO World Heritage sites, such as the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Blenheim Palace.

In this article, we will showcase a selection of the category winners and commended entries, as described by the photographers themselves. These talented artists have captured the beauty of gardens from all over the world, showcasing the incredible diversity of the natural world and the artistry of garden photography.

From the vibrant colors of blooming flowers to the intricate details of leaves and stems, these photographs offer a glimpse into the magical world of gardens and the beauty that they hold. So sit back, relax, and enjoy this journey through the lens of the world’s most talented garden photographers.

More: IGPOTY, Instagram h/t: guardian

Gianluca Gianferrari | Second place, Breathing Spaces | Veliki Slap, Plitvice Lakes national park, Lika-Senj, Croatia

“Also known as the Big Waterfall, Veliki Slap is the highest waterfall in the Unesco world heritage site of Plitvice Lakes national park. The waterfall is pictured surrounded by autumn-toned trees, and with the (enhanced/added) mist it almost feels as though you could breathe in the power of nature”

David Townshend | First place, 7IM Abstract Views | Abandon Hope, Northamptonshire, UK

“‘All hope abandon ye who enter here’ – the famous line from Dante’s Divine Comedy, which was described as being the inscription on the gates to hell. In this image I see circles within circles of Dante’s Inferno, which I created from a bug hotel in my garden using in-camera image blending”

Bernadette Benz | Finalist, The Beauty of Plants | Dancing Filaments, Auenstein, Aargau, Switzerland

“You have to look very closely to appreciate the beauty of Sanguisorba minor (salad burnet). From a distance it appears to be an inconspicuous plant, but close-up its flowers are fascinating, with their long stamen. I captured this specimen on a small piece of meadow, in my natural garden”

Gigi Williams | First place, MPB Plants & Planet | Dune, Namib desert, Namibia

“I took this photo in the Namib desert, which is home to some of the highest sand dunes in the world; this one was particularly impressive with the tiny trees growing happily at the bottom. It is amazing where plants can grow and how life adapts.”

Jay Birmingham | Third place, Breathing Spaces | Misty Lochan, Glencoe Lochan, Highlands, UK

“In a week-long stay at Glencoe in Scotland, I got up each morning to take a sunrise picture, and each morning I was presented with rain; except for this one morning where I got a brief weather window to take this shot. I managed to get a 60-second shot, which helped to bring out the colour created by the mist and rain clouds”

David Townshend | Finalist, 7IM Abstract Views | Present Uncertain, Northamptonshire, UK

“This image symbolises the threat of climate change – the surface of a planet becoming out of control. I used in-camera multiple exposures to combine several elements in my garden.”

Claire Carter | First place, The Beauty of Plants | Fallen Orchid Flowers, Shropshire, UK

“I captured these dead orchid flowers after they had dropped, when they started to dry and take on a wonderful, paper-like texture. To complement this, I added the background texture layer in post-processing.”

Caroline Piek | First place, Beautiful Gardens | The Stream Garden, Waspik, Noord-Brabant, the Netherlands

“The Stream Garden is an immersive naturalistic garden, designed by Noël van Mierlo of Van Mierlo Tuinen and landscaped by Totaaltuin Leende, and is shown here in all its glory in the first morning light using HDR. The meandering watercourse that runs through the garden is directly connected to the River Maas and is full of life such as small fish, crayfish and mussels. The garden has an irresistible appeal to children from the neighbouring marina.”

Claudia Gaupp | Second place, Beautiful Gardens | Bedded on Asters, Höhenpark Killesberg, Stuttgart, Germany

“This double exposure shows a highlight of the perennial borders of the Höhenpark Killesberg: the asters flowering in autumn. A narrow path leads to a bench under a birch tree, and on this evening, there was no better place for me to enjoy this abundance of blooms. Just before the sun disappeared behind the trees, I grabbed my camera to capture this exuberant sea of flowers in all shades of purple.”

Stuart Chape | Second place, MPB Plants & Planet | Laponia II, Laponian area, Sweden

“Aerial view taken from a helicopter of the Rapa River delta in the Laponian area, a Unesco world heritage site in the Swedish Arctic Circle. It is a vast glaciated landscape with complex Arctic vegetation of conifers, dwarf birch and wetland species.”

Tony North | First place, Breathing Spaces | Overall Winner | Blue Tajinaste, La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain

“Echium thyrsiflorum is endemic to the mountains of La Palma island – from high up, there was a magnificent view of both the caldera below, and the stars above. The Unesco La Palma biosphere reserve encompasses the entire island, with the Caldera de Taburiente containing mountains with a highest peak of 2,426 metres – the Roque de los Muchachos.”


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