NPA names inaugural garden contest winners

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Adele Dodd, from right, presents the inaugural Noblesville Preservation Alliance Denzel Hufford Garden Contest grand prize to John and Cindy Hillard with NPA Vice President Donna Parker.

Cindy and John Hillard were named the grand prize winners of the inaugural Noblesville Preservation Alliance (NPA) Denzel Hufford Garden Contest. The Hillard’s received an outdoor garden marker and $200 for their beautiful outdoor haven at 678 N. Ninth St. in Noblesville.

The Grand Prize winning garden was judged “perfect” in the judges’ eyes. According to the Hamilton County Master Gardner judge, the garden was diverse and lush. The Hillard’s have a rock grotto, brick hardscapes and garden art, including antique iron pieces used in a way to accent, not overshadow, the lushness of the garden.

The first runner-up winners were Norma and Mel Minion, 219 Cheshire Circle, and the second runner-up was Ingeborg Reichwein, 548 Banbury Road. The runners-up each received $50 gift certificates to Garden Thyme at the Old Schoolhouse. The awards were made possible by an anonymous NPA family with NPA matching funds.

Adele Dodd, daughter of the late Denzel Hufford, presented the award. Dodd feels her mother would have loved the winning gardens as Hufford brightened the yards and hearts of Noblesville.

“She was a fine lady and did so much for our community,” NPA Vice President Donna Parker said of Hufford. “We do want to honor our heritage and history; we definitely want to preserve that. We want to encompass all of Noblesville. The garden contest is a way of expanding (NPA in the community).”

Parker said the five judges were comprised of Dodd, a Hamilton County Master Gardener, an NPA member, a member of Keep Noblesville Beautiful, and a city resident. She said the judges were amazed at the beauty and quality of care found in this year’s applicants’ gardens.

“I was pleased with the diversity. We had all kinds of gardens which I thought was nice,” said Parker. “It inspired me. We all saw things that did inspire you – new ideas or plants.”

NPA will move the date of judging up just a bit earlier for next year. Parker said the contest may move ahead two weeks to help avoid the “dog days of summer” when judging.

“It was very, very hot. Everybody’s garden was not looking its best because of the heat,” she said.

Although Grand Prize winners cannot reapply, all others are welcome to try again in 2012.

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