“Alexandra Farms’ second-annual contest generated excitement around the world, drawing entries from more than 200 designers in 34 countries.”

Cheers to Alexandra Farms – the premier grower of premium garden roses in Colombia – for hosting its spectacular “Garden Rose Design Contest” for a second year. This annual event invites “floristas” from around the world to submit designs showcasing the beauty and versatility of garden roses.

The first 100 entrants were graciously granted 48 gorgeous blooms from Alexandra Farms to use in their designs. However, designers were allowed to incorporate other types of flowers, as well, if they chose. There were two design categories – “Wedding Bouquet” and “Everyday Design” – and designers could enter either or both. They also were allowed to submit as many of three designs in each category.

PRIZES Four prizes were awarded in each of the two categories: First, Second, Third and Readers’ Choice. These top four designs in each category are showcased on these pages. The first-place winner in each category receives all-expenses-paid trip for two to Alexandra Farms in Bogotá, Colombia (or the monetary equivalent), and the second-place and Readers’ Choice winners are each awarded 1,000 stems of Alexandra Farms garden roses. The two third-place winners each receive 500 of the lovely stems.

JUDGING About the evaluation process, Teresa Schafer, Alexandra Farms communications manager, explains, “Work was evaluated on three criteria: how garden roses were used in the design, photo quality, and the overall design aesthetic and composition. Our judges scored each design independently and confidentially. The Readers’ Choice winners were chosen by a public online vote.”

The judges for this second-annual contest were Jose R. Azout, president of Alexandra Farms; David J.C. Austin of David Austin Roses; Tomas De Bruyne, internationally-renowned floral designer and educator; and David Coake, Florists’ Review’s editorial director.

ABOUT THE CONTEST This year, 203 designers from 34 countries participated, submitting 419 entries – a 22 percent increase over last year’s 344 entries. Schafer was delighted with both the level of participation and the quality of designs. “We’re amazed at the interest this contest has generated. This year’s submissions were really varied, ranging from very simple to very sophisticated, and we were impressed by the creativity and originality of the designers.”

Azout shares the inspiration behind the event: “Once we grow and ship our garden roses, our task of creating beauty is done. The roses, by themselves, are beautiful, but that’s not the complete experience. We wanted to continue to be a part of the creation of beauty through this contest. We also want designers to learn about our varieties’ performance, fragrance, textures and colors, and this contest is a great way to get that interaction. We are thrilled to see our roses being used in such creative and


Tobey Nelson
Tobey Nelson Weddings + Events
Whidbey Island, Wash.
Garden rose varieties used: ‘Bridal Piano’
and ‘Mariatheresia’
Photo by Suzanne Rothmeyer Photography

Nancy Zimmerman
Fancy Florals by Nancy                                       Fairbury, Ill.
Garden rose varieties used: ‘Miranda’ (Ausimmon) and ‘Keira’ (Ausboxer)
Photo by Stephanie Wood Photography

Kara Beane
Joyous Blooms
Yukon, Okla.
Garden rose variety used: ‘Miyabi’
Photo by Paige Keeton-Blu Knot Wedding

Gina Thresher, AIFD, EMC
From the Ground Up Floral
Kent, Wash.
Garden rose variety used: ‘White Cloud’
Photo by Sarah Anne Photography


Katie Noonan, AIFD
Noonan’s Wine Country Designs
San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Garden rose varieties used: ‘Caramel Antike’
and ‘Golden Mustard’
Photo by Ashley Ludaescher

Jessie Partridge
Maidenhair Floral & Event Design
Ocean Springs, Miss.
Garden rose varieties used: ‘Romantic Antike’,
‘Caramel Antike’ and ‘Princess Charlene of Monaco’
Photo by Jerrod Partridge

Meghan Maldonado
Flowers by Mae Mae
Chino Hills, Calif.
Garden rose variety used: ‘Romantic Antike’
Photo by Devon Donahue

Julie Mulligan
Belle Harbor, N.Y.
Garden rose variety used: ‘Princess Hitomi’
(Beautiful History)


Alexandra Farms is a 49-acre boutique rose farm dedicated to growing only nostalgic, romantic garden roses. Located in the Andes Mountains of Bogotá, Colombia, the company is the largest of four licensed growers of David Austin Roses in the world, and the only one in Colombia.

In their 40 greenhouses, they grow more than 50 commercial varieties of garden roses from breeders all over the world including Germany, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Denmark, England and Japan, to create four distinct collections: David Austin Wedding & Event Roses, Deluxe Garden Roses, Princess Japanese Garden Roses and Wabara Garden Roses. All roses are cut, graded and packed by hand. To explore Alexandra Farms’ large selection of garden roses, visit www.alexandrafarms.com.