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TV presenter Zephaniah Lindo handed out prizes to competition winning Pupils from Wheatfields Infant and Nursery School, St Albans

St Albans News

TV presenter Zephaniah Lindo handed out prizes to winners of a competition that encourages young people to learn about wildlife and horticulture.

Schools In Bloom 2016

Zephaniah, a host of BBC2’s Gardeners’ World, was the star guest at the presentation ceremony for Schools in Bloom.

He was joined by the Mayor of St Albans City and District, Councillor Frances Leonard, and Emma Norington of the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust 

The contest, which is in its third year, attracted a record number of entries from primary schools across the St Albans District. 

Fourteen schools where pupils had cultivated plants, flowers and vegetables battled it out for five prizes. 

Pupils from Wheatfields Infant and Nursery School, St Albans, came top in two categories. 

They grew the tallest sunflower to be declared the Super Duper Sunflower champions and also took the Refreshing Water Prize for devising innovative ways to collect rainwater. 

Bernards Heath Infant and Nursery School, St Albans, came first in Wonderful Wildlife for initiatives such as bird boxes and log piles to attract animals. 

Redbourn Infant and Nursery School were the Perfect Pollinators, using flower varieties in the school garden that support bees and other pollinating insects. 

Camp Primary School, St Albans, was first for Vibrant Vegetables, the contest for growing different vegetables and making good use of them once cultivated. 

The awards ceremony on Friday 16 September was held at the St Albans City and District Council’s Civic Centre and was attended by around 100 children, teachers and parents. 

Zephaniah, who lives in London Colney, is also a horticulture lecturer at Capel Manor College, in Enfield, north London, and joined the BBC show earlier this year. 

The Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust sponsored the competition along with Carpenters Nursery. 

Mayor Leonard said: “As a keen gardener, it was wonderful for me to see so many children developing an interest in planting and growing. 
  
“Schools in Bloom is also inspiring a lot of young people to learn about nature and helping their teachers to make this important subject more exciting. It was particularly heartening to find out the contest itself is growing like a sunflower with the number of entries shooting up this year.” 
  
The prizes for the schools’ gardens included a water butt, bird table, watering cans, tiered grow house, oak barrels, bean planter and an apple tree. 
  
Every school that entered received a free pass to Capel Manor and tickets to Willows Farms as well as packets of seeds and bulbs. 

Picture: 1. Zephaniah Lindopresents a certificate to How Wood School, runners up in the Vibrant Vegetables category.