Public housing

2015 Public Housing Garden Competition

Public Housing Garden Competition 2014

Entries now closed for 2015

The 2015 competition is being held as two separate events.

Top End competition

The 2015 Public Housing Garden Competition was open to all public housing tenants in the Top End towns of Darwin, Katherine, Nhulunbuy and Palmerston. The competition recognises the energy and enthusiasm tenants put into their gardens and rewards their hard work with prizes in all categories.

There were a number of ways to enter

  1. Pick up an entry form from your local Housing office.
  2. Download the entry form pdf icon and email it to us with photos of your garden.
    Talk to your Housing Officer if you need help.

>> Entries closed on Friday 28 August 2015.

Shortlisting happening now. Owners of shortlisted gardens will be notified and onsite judging will begin in mid September.

Categories (Top End only)

One entry will be awarded the Best Public Housing Garden for 2015. Prizes will also be awarded to winners of the following categories:

  • Best balcony/small space/pot garden
  • Best native/sustainable/waterwise
  • Best edible garden
  • Best colourful garden

Entrants may enter a maximum of two categories.

Winners and prizes

Best Public Housing Garden
Prize: One $250 voucher.

A winner will be selected for each category.
Prize: A $100 voucher to the winner of each category in Darwin (including Palmerston), Katherine and Nhulunbuy.

A plaque will be awarded to the Best Community Garden.


Gardens will be judged on:

Presentation and general appearance 
Is the garden, patio or balcony well-presented and maintained in terms of soil quality, health of plants, cleanliness, weed management, lawns and edges, mulch, rubbish? Is there overall attention to detail?

Layout and design 
Is the garden, patio or balcony well planned in terms of layout structure, design, paths, man-made and natural features? Does it have ambience and atmosphere? Is it well-balanced/aesthetically pleasing? Suitability to the space/area it occupies.

Does the garden include use of colour, form and composition, variety and repetition, year-round interest and scent? Does it contribute to the visual environment and streetscape?

Environmental consideration 
What initiatives have been introduced? What has been introduced to reduce water use, moisture retention strategies, etc? What plants are used and why were they selected?

  • Natural environment 
    Does the garden encourage wildlife (provide a habitat or food source for local native fauna), use native and local plant species (design, size, variety, repetition), and exclude environmental weeds?
  • Maintenance 
    Can the garden be maintained with a minimal environmental footprint including water and pesticides?
  • Layout and design 
    Is the garden well planned to suit local environmental conditions? Does it use sustainable or locally sourced materials?

Creativity, innovation and passion 
Is the garden creative, innovative or original? Does the garden reflect the Territory’s unique lifestyle? Does it show the effort, enthusiasm and knowledge of the gardener?

Collaboration (Best Community Garden ONLY) 
How well do tenants work together; plan, designate responsibility, manage the upkeep, and share the rewards?

Download the entry form and get involved!

See the winning gardens in the 2014 Public Housing Garden Competition web icon
Download the 2015 Public Housing Garden Competition poster  pdf icon

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Central Australian Garden Competition

Public housing tenants in Alice Springs and Tennant Creek is being judged in a separate category as part of the Central Australian Garden Competition, coordinated by 783 ABC Radio Alice Springs.

The Best Public Housing Garden will be judged in both locations.
Prize: $250 voucher for garden products (x2)

The Department is the proud sponsor of the Garden of the Year.
Prize: $400 in water smart garden equipment.

Get your nomination form here.

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