By Sam Robertson
PHS Program Manager, Gardener Engagement
As we work to encourage gardening throughout our neighborhoods and across the region, we have launched this year’s PHS Gardening Contest for participants to engage in a friendly online competition for Blue Ribbon, Garden of Distinction, and Proud Participant awards. However, entering a garden in the Contest isn’t the only way to participate! We also invite all interested gardeners with three or more years of gardening experience to sign-up as a volunteer judge.
Judges for the gardening contest serve as valued ambassadors for PHS and "Gardening for the Greater Good" by reviewing contest entries and sharing feedback with contestants. Judges are expected to be generally familiar with best practices in gardening, though no technical gardening training is necessary. All judges will be required to view a Judge Orientation video hosted over Zoom, on June 29 (also available as a recording). Volunteers must either already be a PHS member or will be required to sign up as a member to participate as a judge in this year's Contest. All judge sign-ups and contestant submissions must be completed prior to the contest deadline on June 22.
Judging teams will consist of two to three judges who will receive submission photographs and entry questionnaires via email which they will refer to in order to complete Judge Review Forms (one form per judge per submission). The judging will take place from mid-July through mid-August. The scores will be averaged and approved by a final judging committee who will determine the Blue Ribbon, Garden of Distinction, and Proud Participant award winners in the fall. If you participate as a judge and contestant, we will arrange for you to judge a garden in a different category than you have entered yourself.
We hope that you’ll reach out to a friend and sign up to share your gardening knowledge and connect with others over our shared dedication. If you have signed up as a judge and would like to work with friends to review the same garden submissions, please email names and contact information to [email protected] to submit your request.
Follow the link below to sign up as a PHS volunteer judge today before the June 22 deadline. Immediately after the deadline, we will provide you with next steps and instructions, including information about the Judge Orientation taking place over Zoom on June 29.