Neighbours in Alexandra Park Road, Haringey, who brightened up their bins with colourful floral displays have won the first "gardens that make you smile" award in the annual Gardening Against the Odds awards.
Other London nominees in this category (all pictured above) include an Earls Court Basement Garden and the colourful tree pit at Kennington Cross — both of which were nominated by Londonist readers (good work!)
Gardening Against the Odds seeks to raise the profile of gardening's unsung heroes and the power of gardening to make a difference to people's lives, whether through doing or appreciating the results. Other London gardeners and garden projects praised by the judges include:
- The Sunflower Garden where bereaved people come together to garden as a group in West Ham cemetery, a project from St Joseph’s Hospice
- The Dinner Lady’s Garden where Sally Pugh has made a garden on wasteland behind her Waltham Abbey school kitchen using donated or found materials and plants
- Katharine Thomas, a 23 year old Wimbledon gardener who was injured in a car accident and suffered depression and ME since — now she is doing her own garden, the patch at her grandmother’s care home and is also working with an East London group
- Evering Road Kitchen Garden, Stoke Newington was planted this spring by volunteers and service users at North London Action for the Homeless and its fresh produce creates lunch and dinner twice a week for the drop in centre, which also sells its own chutneys, herbal teas and seeds to raise funds.
- The Jessa Family Garden (pictured) in Friern Barnet was nominated by Dr Zahra Jessa. Her parents, who are the gardeners, are both in their 70s and despite having two daughters with profound learning difficulties have maintained their joint love of gardening
- The north-east corner of Larkhall Park in Battersea has been transformed from an area used by drug users, rough sleepers and gangs into a community garden by Thrive, the horticultural therapy charity (pictured)
- On the corner of St Rule Street in Wandsworth wasteland in front of a JCDecaux advertising hoarding was cleared by parents of Heathbrook Primary School pupils for lavender and other plants to brighten up the street
Find out more about Gardening Against the Odds online and get ready to suggest more London gardens that make you smile when nominations open again in the summer.