Awards

With so many Hydrangea cultivars already on the market, and many new ones arriving each year, how to choose the best for your garden? Consider planting hydrangeas that have won awards.

In the old days, plant breeders trialled their new plants and waited until they were sure that the new plants were superior, or better in some way, than any similar plants that were already available.  Today, it seems that any new plant upon which they can slap a trademark or ‘patent protection’ or ‘plant breeders rights’ restriction is good for a money-making marketing initiative.

At Heritage Hydrangeas, we are focusing on plants which have stood the test of time, that may have been bred or introduced decades ago, but which are still considered to be of superior quality. To this end, we support two independent organisations which have no commercial bias and which make awards only after extensive trialling.

Criteria for the RHS’ Award of Garden Merit:

  • AGM Award logo 2012 (4)Must be excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
  • Must be available
  • Must be of good constitution
  • Must be essentially stable in form and colour
  • Must be reasonably resistent to pests and diseases

The RHS’ Award of Garden Merit (AGM) is administered by
the Royal Horticultural Society, UK

Criteria for the Great Plant Picks award:

  • plant picks logoMust be hardy to -18ºC
  • Must be long lived
  • Must not require highly specialist growing conditions or care
  • Must not be particularly susceptible to any pest or disease
  • Must have long season of interest and preferably multiple seasons of interest
  • Must be available
  • Must be adaptable to a variety of soil and fertility conditions
  • Must not require excessive moisture
  • Must not be invasive

    Perennials should not require staking, continuous deadheading or frequent division

The Great Plant Picks award is administered by
the Elizabeth Carey Miller Botanical Garden, Washington

2014 was the only year in which an hydrangea was awarded the prestigious RHS Chelsea Flower Show Plant of the Year award:

RHS Chelsea Flower Show Plant of the Year                    

The Chelsea Flower Show has been held in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, London every year since 1913, apart from gaps during the two World Wars. The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is organised by the Royal Horticultural Society which was founded in 1804.

Criteria for the award:

The crucial feature of the competition is that the plants must be new: never before sold, or even exhibited at a British flower show.

All the entries must show three specific qualities:  Innovation – is it different from previous examples of the same type of plant? Excellence and impact – is it eye-catching, does it show its features well? Appeal – will a wide range of gardeners want to grow it, and is it likely still to be grown in the future?

The winners were selected by members of RHS Plant Committees, from more than 40 short-listed entrants.  Displayed in the Great Pavilion, the finalists represented most plant groups from seasonal bedding through to houseplants and climbers … and the winner is …

Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Miss Saori’ (‘H20-2’ PBR).