Best in Bloom: Discover our wildflower competition for lockdown Britain

The Commonwealth War Graves Foundation (CWGF) has planted the seeds for a new competition designed to brighten the public’s lockdown, while encouraging remembrance of our war dead.

Best in Bloom is a competition for people of all ages and all gardening abilities. Whether your green to gardening or green fingered, CWGF is encouraging you to take part by requesting a free pack of Wildflower Mix seeds to grow your own memorial garden.

The seeds within the mix have been specifically chosen to reflect those that would have grown on the battlefields of the First World War. Those who take part can share the results of their efforts by posting a photograph on Twitter or Instagram using #WarGravesWeek. The best in bloom will be judged by horticultural experts and the lucky winner will take a home a prize of up to £200 to spend in a garden centre.

The competition forms part of the CWGC’s first ever War Graves Week- a week of national activity. Running from the 21-28 May 2021, War Graves Week will shine a light on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s work and the people who keep Remembrance of our war dead alive.

The seeds initiative is kindly supported by British lawn care manufacturer Hayter®, who will be stocking the seeds across their UK network of independent lawnmower dealerships. Hayter has been designing and producing premium quality lawn care products since 1946.

On the partnership, Craig Hoare, Sales and Marketing Manager for Hayter, said “We are excited to be able to be part of this initiative with CWGF. We have had a long-standing history with the CWGF with our popular Harrier® rear roller lawnmower being used at a number of war grave sites.

The seeds are also available to order from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website.

John Grain, Executive Director for CWGF, said: “As the First World War ended, new life quickly sprang up from the battlefields. As wildflowers came into bloom, they brought a sense of hope and new beginnings.

“We want the British public and especially families and younger people, to have a go at growing their own wildflower memorial garden, either in their back yard or a flowerpot. It is an easy and fun activity but with a serious message – that even in these dark times there is hope and we must never forget those who gave their lives for the freedoms we so look forward to enjoying once this pandemic is over.”

Whilst the seeds are free, donations to the CWGF are encouraged. The CWGF aims to engage and educate people especially the young - with the work of the CWGC. It offers a programme of innovative educational and engagement activities, telling the stories of the 1.7 million fallen Commonwealth servicemen and women, and of how the CWGC now, as then, continues to honour their sacrifice.