Container Contest 2015

May 8th | 10 am to 3:00 pm
in the Enid A. Haupt Garden behind the Smithsonian Castle

Can you show how to attract different types of pollinators to a container?
Do you have a vision for a container garden that cannot be contained?

Container Contest

Activities at Garden Fest include the annual Container Contest, an opportunity for garden enthusiasts of all levels to show off their unique potted designs.

This year’s contest will challenge participants to think outside the pot by creating a pollinator- friendly container garden.  There are no excuses about limited space when it comes to container gardening! Whether it’s a tiny balcony or small patio, sunny or shady, day or night, there’s always room for these wonderful gardens.  Select the perfect combination of annual, perennial or woody plants to entice all types of pollinators to your patio, deck or landscape.


Click here to register!

The deadline for registration is May 5, 2015. For more information, email

When submitting your entry, please include the following:

  • Title for the container design
  • List of all plant varieties used in the container
  • Whether the garden is for sun or shade
  • Any additional information to tell your gardening story

Contest Rules

  • Container must be able to be lifted.
  • Container must include a minimum of 3 types of plants, at least one of which is a pollinator flower or plant.
  • One entry per person.
  • Participation is limited to the first 20 entrants
  • Entrant is responsible for submission set-up and take down

Contest Details

The 2015 Container Contest will take place during Smithsonian Gardens’ Garden Fest on Friday, May 8th. Entries must be dropped off between 8 am and 9 am the day of the event at the Enid A. Haupt Garden.

Judging will take place at noon and be conducted by Smithsonian staff.  Submissions will be evaluated on color, arrangement, container usage and overall design.  When making plant selections, please be sensitive to potential irritants and avoid common allergens (i.e. poison ivy). The People’s Choice award will be determined by a popular vote extended to all Garden Fest attendees.

The number of awards issued will depend upon the quality of the submissions.  Each participant will receive a Smithsonian Gardens tote bag.

Entrants must pick up their container from the Enid A. Haupt Garden at the conclusion of Garden Fest between 2 pm and 3 pm.

Smithsonian Gardens assumes no responsibility for lost, stolen, damaged or misdirected entries during the contest period. Entrants must abide by the contest rules and decisions of the judges which are final.

If, for any reason, the Garden Fest Container Contest is not capable of being run as planned, Smithsonian Gardens reserves the right to cancel, modify, or suspend the contest.