Sunset's Dream Garden Awards

The best in regional style, outdoor living, small-space design, and more

Gardens in the West are as varied as the people who create them.

Both professional and home gardeners have entered the 2006 contest and will be judged and awarded separately.

Deadline for home gardeners was May 1, 2006. Deadline for professionals was March 22, 2006.

CATEGORIES

Regional style. The garden captures the spirit of a particular area with materials and plants appropriate for the climate and terrain.

Incredible makeover. Takes advantage of existing features or plants while removing undesirable elements. "Before" photos required.

Best personal retreat. Seating, birdbaths, garden art, and other distinctive items create a garden refuge.

Best for outdoor living. The space invites gatherings, entertaining, and recreation, with fireplaces, play areas, kitchens, or other features.

Best small space. Smart design and planting ideas in an area of 2,000 square feet or less.

PRIZES

One overall Grand Prize winner, Second Place winner, and Third Place winner will be selected from among all the entrants at the Home Gardeners level. And one overall Grand Prize winner, Second Place winner, and Third Place winner will be selected from among all the entrants at the Landscape Architects and Designers level. Each Grand Prize winner will receive $1,000 cash prize and $100 gift certificate to a garden-supply company of Sunset's choice, each Second Place winner will receive $500, and each Third Place winner will receive $250. In addition, some of the winning gardens may be published in a future issue of Sunset.

OFFICIAL CONTEST RULES AND REGULATIONS

Sunset's Dream Garden Awards Contest is a program recognizing the best of residential Western garden design, judged by a jury of garden experts. The contest is open to nonprofessional home gardeners and professional landscape architects and designers.

Nonprofessional home gardeners will be judged separately from professional landscape architects and designers. All contestants must reside in, and their projects must be located in, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, or British Columbia, Canada.

Nonprofessional home gardeners are qualified as those who do not make a living designing landscapes. (Gardens must be designed by the home gardener without the assistance of a gardening professional but not necessarily installed by said party.)

Professional landscape architects and designers are qualified as those who earn most or all of their living designing landscapes. Only residential projects completed between January 1, 2001, and January 1, 2005, will be considered.

TO ENTER

Home Gardeners: Click the link above or call 650/324-5632 for an entry form. There is NO entry fee. Submissions should include the entry form, description of garden, two to four pages of images (minimum 4- by 6-inch photo size), and plant list. All pages should be 8 1/2- by 11-inch paper, single-sided. Submissions are non-returnable. Submission should be mailed to Sunset's Dream Garden Awards Contest, 80 Willow Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025. One entry per envelope. All entries become the property of Sunset Publishing Corporation and may be edited and published in Sunset Publishing products, online services, and those of its corporate affiliates. Entries are limited to a total of six per entrant regardless of category delineation. All entries are by mail-in only. Mailed entries must be postmarked by May 1, 2006, and received by May 8, 2006.

Landscape Architects and Designers: Click the link above or call 650/324-5632 for an entry form. There is NO entry fee. Applications must be postmarked by March 15, 2006. Upon receipt of your application form, an 8 1/2- by 11-inch contest binder will be mailed to you for design statement, photographic prints, color photocopies, drawings, and plans.

All components must be inserted into the binder. It is not necessary for all sleeves to be filled. Contest binders will not be returned, whether or not a completed binder is submitted. All applicable correspondence (entry form, contest binder) should be mailed to Sunset's Dream Garden Awards Contest, 80 Willow Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025. One entry per envelope.

All entries become the property of Sunset Publishing Corporation and may be edited and published in Sunset Publishing products, online services, and those of its corporate affiliates. Entries are limited to a total of six per entrant regardless of category delineation. All entries are by mail-in only. Mailed entries must be postmarked by April 3, 2006, and received by April 10, 2006.

Categories and Prizes: The categories are Regional Gardening Style, Incredible Makeover, Personal Retreat, Outdoor Living, and Small Space Garden. Entries must be submitted by the home gardener or professional architect and designer and must be the design of that individual. Entries cannot have been published previously, except in the case where the project appeared once in a local newspaper or city magazine. Homeowner(s) must consent to entry and photography of the winning garden. Sunset reserves the right to add props to the garden for photographic purposes. Entries will become the property of Sunset Publishing Corporation and will not be returned. They may be edited and published, with credit, in Sunset Publishing products, online services, and those of its corporate affiliates. Entries will be judged, as submitted, on the basis of category appropriateness, function, utility, originality, quality of design, and skillful execution. To ensure anonymity during judging, names on entries will be masked. One overall Grand Prize winner, Second Place winner, and Third Place winner will be selected from among all the entrants at the Home Gardeners level. And one overall Grand Prize winner, Second Place winner, and Third Place winner will be selected from among all the entrants at the Landscape Architects and Designers level. Each Grand Prize winner will receive $1,000 cash prize and $100 gift certificate to a garden-supply company of Sunset's choice, each Second Place winner will receive $500, and each Third Place winner will receive $250. Judges' decisions are final. Taxes are the responsibility of the Winners. Sponsors are not responsible for lost, misdirected, or delayed mail. Sponsors, their affiliates, partners, and promotion and advertising agencies are not responsible for technical, hardware, software, telephone, communications network, website, Internet, or ISP malfunctions, errors, or failures of any kind, or for any injury or damage to participant's or any other person's computer relating to or resulting from participating in this Contest. If, for any reason, the Contest is not able to be conducted as planned, because of circumstances or causes, which, in Sponsors' sole opinion, affect the security, fairness, or proper conduct of this Contest, Sponsors reserve the right to modify or cancel the Contest. Any Winner who cannot be easily located at address shown on entry form will forfeit prize. Winner will be required to sign statement of eligibility and release of liability. Winner will be required to provide a release from the homeowner for access and photography (including necessary props). Depending on the value of the prize, Winner may be required to provide Driver's License or other government-issued identification number for verification and Social Security number for tax purposes. By acceptance of prize, Winner consents to use of his/her name and/or photograph and/or garden photography for publicity purposes without further compensation. Eligibility: Entrants must reside in, and their projects must be located in, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, or British Columbia, Canada, and have reached the age of majority in the place of their residence. No substitution or transfer or prizes, except at the discretion of Sunset Publishing Corporation, which reserves the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value. Sunset Publishing is not responsible for lost, misdirected, or delayed mail. Employees of Sunset Publishing Corporation, sponsoring companies, their affiliates, subsidiaries, agencies, suppliers, and the families of each are not eligible. Void where prohibited by law. All federal, state, and local regulations apply. Names of the Winners will be posted on www.sunset.com. All or some winning gardens will be published in a future issue of Sunset and may be used in other Sunset publications.