European Award for Ecological Gardening 2021

(c) Stadtgemeinde Tulln

The European Award for Ecological Gardening sees itself as a European project with a strong connection to the earth. Fire, water, earth, air - the Greek philosophers already saw the four elements as basic components of all being: The four cardinal points and the four seasons also show that the four as a number have a strong bond with earth and nature. This connectedness will also be used in the fourth competition in a row from November 2020 to May 2021.

With that in mind, this time there will be three closely related categories:

Category 1: Promoting biodiversity in gardens and green areas

Biodiversity means diversity – diversity of different living spaces, diversity of animal and plant species, mushrooms and microorganisms. At the same time, diverse structures also play an important role when it comes to near-natural design and careful soil and environmental management through ecological care – because ultimately, nature and species protection starts right at our front door.
The projects that can be submitted and have already been implemented have the potential to generate quite colourful mixtures: Consequently, renaturated industrial areas, school grounds, city parks, public green areas, free spaces in company and residential buildings, as well as many other projects can be submitted. In these projects, the promotion of biological diversity is requirement.
Prizes will be awarded to appealing, inspiring and ecologically valuable projects in public, semi-public or private green areas, which – irrespective of their size – create a real added value for humans and the environment and contribute to increasing biodiversity.

Category 2: Climate-friendly gardens, green areas and greening of buildings

Climate change presents new challenges for us. More and more intelligent ways are needed to adapt our gardens and green spaces to climate change. For this reason, we are looking for already implemented projects that create an added value for residents and the environment alike inside settlements. During the assessment process, particular attention will be given to a location-appropriate selection of plants, the intelligent use of rainwater, the improvement of the microclimate, as well as climate-fit gardening. At the same time, the focus will also be laid on the existence of a nursing concept for the sustainability of the given project.

Prizes will be awarded to ecologically valuable projects in public, semi-public or private green areas and building greenings, which – irrespective of their size – can be used for multiple purposes and also integrate the region or their surroundings, such as the origin of materials used (natural stone, wood, etc.). Also aspects of fair environmental conditions, climate protection, as well as the generation and use of energy are intended to reflect the projects in an innovative way.

Category 3: Gardens for health, care and therapy

Gardens and green spaces mean freedom, adventure, recreation and livelihood. Consequently, it is no accident that gardens and green spaces are also increasingly being used in hospitals, rehabilitation and addiction treatment centres, facilities for people with disabilities and residential homes for senior citizens, as well as in schools and kindergartens as a health-promoting or therapeutic tool. This way of extending the living space and spectrum of perception not only contributes to a better quality of life for its users but also offers health-care staff new possibilities in their professional environment. As a result, gardens for health, care and therapy also create a new form of togetherness.

In this category, gardens and green areas belonging to hospitals, residential homes for senior citizens, therapeutic institutions, as well as garden-therapeutic education and similar institutions can be submitted, which additionally promote the health and well-being inside the green areas connected to them. Criteria also include an exemplary quality of stay and care, as well as the involvement of gardens in therapeutic concepts.

Prizes will be awarded to ecologically valuable projects, which have already been implemented in public, semi-public or private green areas, irrespective of their size. Furthermore, these projects can be used for multiple purposes and integrate the region or their surroundings, such as the origin of the materials used (natural stone, wood, etc.).

Submission: from 15 November 2020 until 31 May 2021

The European Award for Ecological Gardening 2021 is awarding prizes to high-quality projects and achievements, which are based on ecological gardening and which have already been implemented. We are looking for projects which are innovative and sustainable, have a model character and are near-naturally designed, ecologically cultivated and can also include social and economic aspects. The Award is aimed at gardeners, planners, municipalities & local authorities, educational institutions and associations from all European nations.

Put your own project on the international stage – as part of the European Award for Ecological Gardening.

The initiative Natur im Garten, represented by the Federal Province of Lower Austria as well as the “European Garden Association - Natur im Garten International” and the „Natur im Garten“ GmbH will award the “European Award for Ecological Gardening 2021“ as a recognition of outstanding achievements in the field of ecological gardening.

The jury will select a winning project for each category. Participants to the competition nominated for the prize will be informed in writing and announced on 15 August 2021. The prize award ceremony, during which the winning projects will be announced, will be held on 6 October 2021 on the island of Mainau in Germany.

Prize moneys

For each category, a prize will be awarded to the winning project. The prize is made up of the public prize award ceremony, a special plaque, as well as a prize money of EUR 1.000,00. In addition to that, the winners will be published on the website, also including press work.


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