Great American Gardeners & Book Awards Ceremony Going Virtual
Every year it’s our privilege to host a wonderful celebration at our River Farm headquarters recognizing the Great American Gardeners Award recipients. This year however due to extraordinary times, we’re pleased to honor our Award Winners virtually on the web and across social media platforms. Follow the American Horticultural Society on social media where, beginning in mid-June, we will be sharing video messages from this year’s horticultural champions about the inspiring work that they do. It is our hope that by honoring our award winners in the online sphere, it will provide more exposure to their accomplishments.
Created in 1953, the AHS awards program recognizes exemplary professionals and organizations in horticultural fields, and outstanding garden-related authors and publishers. Each of our honorees is selected from nominations across the country for their efforts to advance and celebrate the art and science of horticulture. The 2020 honorees include:
- Blocks in Bloom, a community outreach program in Rochester, NY instilling neighborhood pride through planting
- Landon Reeve, IV, longtime supporter of the AHS through a position on the Board of Directors and grounds maintenance by Chapel Valley Landscape Company
- Catharine McCord of Denver who designs garden spaces for children suffering from mental health issues or trauma
- Steve Castorani whose Philadelphia-area North Creek Nursery was an early champion for the power and utility of native plants.
- Ciscoe Morris, Seattle’s beloved Garden Guru and longtime grounds manager for Seattle University
- Jessica Turner-Skoff, a treeologist at the Chicago-area Morton Arboretum inspiring the next generation of green collar workers with her Planted podcast
- Charles “Chipper” Wichman whose 40 year career at Hawaii’s National Tropical Botanical Garden has been dedicated to the discovery and conservation of tropical plants
- Dan Heims, President of Portland, OR’s Terra Nova Nurseries, breeder of over 1,000 new plant varieties
- Nancy Ross Hugo who, through her floral design workshops, encourages participants to appreciate the unique beauty of every plant
- Michael Balick, preeminent ethnobotanist working to preserve traditional plant knowledge and healing practices
- Grow Dat Youth Farm, teaching leadership and work skills through growing to urban teens in New Orleans
- Leslie Bennett who combats gentrification and displacement in Oakland, CA by creating culturally-relevant garden sanctuaries
- James Folsom whose leadership, dedication, and vision have ensured The Huntington’s place as one of the country’s premier public gardens
- Barry Fugatt, longtime educator in the Tulsa, OK garden community motivated by the desire to “sow seeds into the hearts and lives of people”
For more information on the 2020 honorees, please see ahsgardening.org/awardwinners. Celebrating the successes of our award winners brings attention to the important role that horticulture plays in the health and wellbeing of people and the planet and highlights career pathways for younger generations. Please consider supporting the AHS’s Awards program. Your gift will help us honor America’s best and brightest in the horticulture field and further spread the word about their important work.