The School Garden Challenge

Each year the RHS Malvern Spring Festival encourages children and young adults in the local community to take on a horticultural challenge

In 2023, the theme was ‘Bring a Book to Life’, and with help from School Garden Challenge Champion Chris Collins, 10 incredible creations came to life after months of hard work by teachers, volunteers and the young horticulturists of the future.

Highly Commended and winner of Best School Garden

How Grimm is our Garden

By Wye Forest Federation, St Briavels Parochial C of E Primary School & Redbrook C of E Primary School

The garden was a celebration of fairytales made famous by the Brothers Grimm, with hidden clues to help visitors guess the stories.

Highly Commended

The Secret Garden

By Stourport High School and Sixth Form College

Based on Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic, this enchanting space was designed and built by 11-17-year-olds.


We Grow Like Flowers in the Garden of Music

By Eastnor Parochial Primary School

Influenced by the Romani Traveller tale Ossiri and the Bala Mengro, by Richard O’neil and Katherine Quarmby, about resourcefulness and empathy, the garden portrayed growth and music in horticultural form.

Highly Commended

The Secret Garden

By Royal Grammar School Worcester

The 11-14-year-old children behind this garden design – inspired by Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden – took visitors on a sensory journey from India to the Yorkshire Dales.


Faraway Lands

By Bredon School

Based on Enid Blyton’s The Faraway Tree, the garden made by a group of 7-11-year-olds who created four of the magical lands of the classic children’s tale.

Highly Commended

The Open Secret

By Tudor Grange Academy Worcester

Inspired by The Secret Garden, this space, conceived by 11-13-year-olds, focused on the healing power of nature and gardens, and the way outdoor spaces bring people together.

Highly Commended

The Worm Charmer

By Three Counties Academy Trust

Super Worm, a tale of friendship by picture book favourites Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, is the inspiration for this charming garden, designed and built by 5-16-year-olds.


Winnie the Pooh Helps the Bees

By Pathways Day Service

Created by young adults with learning difficulties/disabilities, the garden focusses on the important role of bees in food pollination, as well as species for wildlife habitat.

Highly Commended

The Secret Garden

By Nunnery Wood High School

Nunnery Wood’s version of The Secret Garden, designed by 11-15-year-olds, provided a space where anyone could come together, make new friends and help our planet to become a better place.


Return to the Shire

By Pershore College

This Tolkein-inspired space, designed by Supported Learning Students at Pershore College, WCG, contained hard landscaping and sympathetic planting combining to tell a magical tale.

Explore the 2023 show

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.