Gardeners World competition bid sets sail

Local students aim to snap up top prize.

Birmingham Metropolitan College has shipped in help from Bournville Village Trust students in its bid to win a BBC Gardeners’ World Live competition being held at the National Exhibition Centre from 12th until 15th June.

The Birmingham-based housing provider collected and delivered a specially made boat which has been crafted by carpentry students and technicians, Matt Hartland and John Chiad, from Birmingham Metropolitan College’s Construction Campus in the Black Country. The boat will be the centre piece for the Spice Garden competition entry. The Spice Garden will feature many of the world’s spices in containers ranging from a tropical canopy, to planted tea chests and a spice rack.

Lloyd Gower, Landscape Manager at Bournville Village Trust, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity for our horticulture students and we didn’t hesitate to offer our support. Working to create the Spice Garden offers students the chance to show off the planning, building and maintenance skills they are learning on their course. Knowing that their handy work will be on display for thousands of show garden visitors will really boost their commitment to their professional development.”

The nine students who work in the Trust’s Landscapes Department are studying the Level 2 Practical Diploma in Horticulture – a part-time vocational course run by Birmingham Metropolitan College – securing the qualification whilst at work.

Darren Rudge, Horticulture Assistant Director at Birmingham Metropolitan College’s Botanical Gardens Campus, said: “We’re really grateful to all of our sponsors who have helped our students to create a unique Spice Garden that celebrates the rich history of the spice trade, tracing the impact that spices have had from a culinary and medicinal perspective throughout the years. All the students have shown incredible enthusiasm in planning and implementing the garden and are really looking forward to receiving feedback from competition judges, garden lovers and experts.”

Local companies, The Little Gardening Company, Sure Set Resin Bonded Paving, Plants for Presents, Green Line Plants and Tromans Landscaping have all donated items for the Spice Garden.

The Spice Garden will be part of the outdoor displays on stand number RHS 5 from 12th until 15th June and judging takes place on Wednesday 11th June.

Courses on offer from the Botanical Gardens Campus include Full Time Levels 1 and 2 as well as Diplomas in Horticulture, Levels 2 and 3 in Conservation and Arboriculture. All Royal Horticultural Society Certificates are offered along with short courses, evening and weekend programmes in Horticulture and Floristry. The setting offers 15 acres of gardens with over 7000 species to be studied. Check out details on the website: