The organisers of Bord Bia Bloom 2024 are inviting creative and ambitious gardeners to design and deliver their own show garden at the horticulture and food festival.

The event is taking place from 30 May to 3 June 2024 in Phoenix Park, Dublin, and the organisers are keen to attract applicants who may have not yet considered taking part in the industry showcase before.

Outlining the opportunities that Bord Bia Bloom presents, seasoned show garden designer Alan Rudden, who has won eight gold medals for his garden designs at the festival, said: "Bord Bia Bloom is an unbelievable platform that most other industries don’t have.

"If you have any idea percolating in your head, it gives you the ability to express yourself on a big blank canvas which is not in the real world and so it has no restraints.”

The showcase also provides show garden designers with an opportunity to further develop new skills or approaches to landscape and garden design.

Three-time gold medal-winning show garden designer Nicola Haines said: “Bord Bia Bloom has allowed me to test new materials or explore new design areas which I might not be able to incorporate into my client work.

"Bloom is a wonderful opportunity to meet with the public to see what they are really interested in.”

Cultivating talent initiative

Following the success of 2023, Bord Bia Bloom is also seeking applications for the ‘Cultivating talent initiative’ offering financial support and one-to-one mentoring to help kickstart the career of one motivated show garden designer.

The initiative was designed to promote emerging garden and landscape designers and to encourage a pipeline of new talent into the industry.

The winner in 2023 was Joe Eustace, who currently combines studying for a degree in landscape and architecture in University College Dublin alongside running his own business, Online Garden Designs.

Speaking about the experience, Joe said: "I was following Bord Bia Bloom for years as a spectator as I had a huge interest in garden and landscape design, but I would have always thought it was something that was above me.

"It was a great experience, I learned so much being on-site and seeing how the experts were approaching their gardens.

"It allowed me to learn about the importance of producing a set of drawings that can be read and applied to the site and the key differences between designing a show garden versus a client garden, which is where the one-to-one mentorship was invaluable.”

Business benefits

The organisers of Bord Bia Bloom also highlighted the social and business advantages for the show and the designers taking part.

Speaking about the business benefits, Alan Rudden explained: “There’s no doubt about it, people associate a certain level of quality with Bord Bia Bloom and it definitely adds another string to your bow when building your business profile.

"You get back what you put into anything. A show garden comes with a lot of hard work, but for me it is the foundation of where I’ve built everything from.”


The closing date for applications for show garden designers and for the cultivating talent initiative is Monday 20 November 2023.

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