Scale for Judging Naturalistic Designs - [Emily Seaber Parcher Award]

Design: The viewer should feel part of the garden, not as if he is admiring a framed painting in a gallery. Larger lacy material can be used in front to tantalize without obscuring the effects.


Naturalistic Reproduction                  = 40 points

The selection and arrangement of materials should create an essence or heightened version of natural landscape.


Suitability and Quality of Plants        = 35 points

Materials should be in excellent condition. Since plants in the wild occur in communities, plants should be grouped according to natural growing conditions (sun or shade, wet or arid, alkaline or acid, hardy or tender.)


Seasonability                                    = 10 points

Plants should occur naturally within a 6-week span, up to 3 weeks each side of date.


Charm and Appeal                            = 10 points


Correct Labeling                               =  5 points


                                          Total    = 100 points



From a 1999 handout by Margie Lamar:

“Naturalistic is a treatment influenced by the way nature handles earth forms, water features and planting design which result in a ‘flowing, untrimmed, billowy effect’ a bit fuzzy around the edges in appearance It differs from a more structured architectural and formal style, where man-made forms or hard-edged shapes dominate”.

Scale: Exhibit should feel life-sized, not miniature. Scale is determined by the smallest element.

3-D effect: Should reveal different aspects from different viewing angles.


The Emily Seaber Parcher Award “for excellence in landscape design of a professional garden exhibit of less than 1000 square feet” is one of three awards given annually by the Landscape Design Council at the Boston Flower and Garden Show. Qualified Landscape Design Consultants judge the exhibits competing for this award. See “Landscape Design Council Awards - Five Awards”.