Hobbiton™ Movie Set in partnership with Matamata Primary School took home two Gold Medals and the Overall Upcycle Award at the 2018 New Zealand Flower and Garden Show in Auckland in December.
The popular tourism attraction has had success in the garden show before, but it took a new approach in 2018, working with a local school to come up with two winning designs.
Designs created by the students were shortlisted by Hobbiton Movie Set’s art department down to two final concepts. A few members of the Hobbiton team then visited the school, presenting their ‘mood boards’ and talking through the creative process. They also enjoyed a sustainable gardening activity involving seed germination using everyday household items which were then incorporated into the winning garden design, The Bushman’s Backyard.
Awarded a Gold Medal and the Overall Upcycle Award, the Bushman’s Backyard garden featured a collection of reclaimed wood, rustic objects and native plants. An old clawfoot bath, rain gutter and piping were repurposed from the farm to capture rainfall to provide a sustainable water source for the garden.
The Bee Natural garden, which also received a Gold Medal, depicted a vibrant, bee-friendly environment. The exhibit used bright colours and plants alongside upcycled bee hives from the Movie Set. A sculpted giant bee made from old chicken wire fencing was suspended above the garden.
The Matamata Primary School children were buzzing with excitment at their success: “We learnt that you can use recyclables to plant seedlings, for example egg shells, newspaper and toilet rolls. We now know there are many uses for recycled objects. Our own seeds in our classroom have just started to sprout which is exciting. We would love to learn more from Hobbiton gardeners and hope they can come to our school again."
As part of their prize, the class class enjoyed a free, hosted visit to the Movie Set.