The Young Horticulturist of the Year Competition

Information on, and how to take part in, the leading competition for any horticulturist under 30.

Young horticultarlist in a greenhouse

 The Young Horticulturist of the Year competition is a fantastic opportunity to test your knowledge and get the opportunity to meet with fellow horticulturists from all over the UK and Ireland.

The competition is free to enter.

It is open to anyone below the age of 30 on 31st July in the year of entering the competition.

With a prize fund of £8000 there are opportunities to win prizes across round 1, regional finals, and the grand final. The ultimate winner of the competition wins a £2500 travel bursary to fund horticultural related travel anywhere in the world.

If you are affected by neurocognitive accessibility issues, please email yhoy@horticulture.org.uk and one of our YHoY Team will contact you directly.

Entries for the 2025 competition will open on 1 February 2025.

View the recording from the 2024 Grand Final of the Young Horticulturist of the Year competition, held at Hestercombe House & Gardens, Taunton on Thursday 9th May, by clicking on the video, above.

Find out more about the competition

About the Competition

The first recorded national final was held in 1990 at Writtle College in Essex. The competition could not exist without the Shropshire Horticultural Society (SHS) who organise the fantastic Shrewsbury Flower show every year. The SHS fund a large proportion of the competition and in particular the £2,500 travel bursary awarded to the winner each year.

The funds come from a trust set up in honour of Percy Thrower. Percy was known to many as the first ever celebrity gardener and is recognised for his time on BBC Gardeners World from 1969 to 1976.

Round 1

Round 1 takes place in February and consists of a multitude of question types (multiple choice, match the answer, true or false etc), covering a wide range of horticultural topics. Round 1 is held on-line. Competitors will be able to take part in Round 1 between 1st – 28th February.

The top 8 highest scorers from each region with receive £25 prize money each and claim a place in the regional final.

Regional finals

Regional finals will be physical events, taking place in March.

Each regional final awards 1st place with £150, 2nd place receives £100 and 3rd place £75. The winners of each regional final progress on to the grand final.

The Final

The format of the Grand Final will consist of questions covering all sections of horticulture. The winner of the Final receives the £2,500 Percy Thrower Travel Bursary, provided by the Shropshire Horticultural Society & the Percy Thrower Trust, to fund a horticultural trip anywhere in the world. Second place winner goes home with £950, 3rd with £550 and the rest of the runners up all receive £200, all to be used in any way they wish.

Each of the finalists is also awarded membership to the Chartered Institute of Horticulture and PlantNetwork.

Previous winners have visited Borneo, China, New Zealand, South Africa, the Himalayas, and the Galapagos Islands to name just a few!

Sponsors

We are very privileged to have the continued support of the Shropshire Horticultural Society / Percy Thrower Trust as our main sponsors, and Bord Bia that supports the competition in Ireland.

There are also a large number of other Regional sponsors that help to make the competition worthwhile for all concerned.

If you are interested in sponsoring the 2025 competition, please contact the Chartered Institute of Horticulture – Email: cih@horticulture.org.uk