Photo Contest at High Country Gardens

– Posted in: Contests and Giveaways, Garden Photography

Our friends at High Country Gardens are running a Spring Photo Contest.  Deadline May 31.  Gardening Gone Wild readers know about contests from our own ‘Picture This’ photo contests and should be well prepared to enter – and win.

David Salman xeric New Mexico rock garden with silver foliage Artemisia frigida, Penstemon pinnifolius, Melampodium (Blackfoot Daisy) and Claret-cup cactus, Echinocereus triglochidiatus

High Country Garden David Salman’s own New Mexico picturesque rock garden

I gave HCG a blog post and free photo tips,  Six Tips for Good Garden Photography in exchange for mentioning my e-book Good Garden Photography, but readers here have read the entire book over the years and can probably enter the contest without reading the Six Tips post.

But just in case you want a garden photography refresher, here are two of the tips:

  1. Composition 101: Fill the Frame.California drought tolerant succulent garden with Golden barrel cactus, Echinocactus grusonii, Aloe elgonica, A. cameronii, Senecio; design Jeff MooreBegin by thinking of your camera viewfinder as a frame, wherein you compose your picture. The core objective of any good photo is to fill the entire frame with purpose. Do not waste space with elements that don’t contribute to your story. Use the camera viewfinder (or your crop tool later) and fill the frame.

3. Finding the Light.

Mexican feather grass (Nassella tenuissima) flowing through New Zealand Flax, Phormium 'Guardsman' (spike, lance foliage leaves) in California garden

Soft light helps create the flow of Mexican feather grass through Phormium.

Understanding light is key to getting good photos. Light fundamentally affects color renditions in garden photography. Stay away from hot, contrasty midday light – a camera can not see the full range of highlights to shadow that the eye can see.

The rest of the tips are on their site along with contest rules and entry forms.  There are lots of categories with $100 gift certificates prizes: and a Grand prize, a $250 High Country Gardens gift certificate.

  • Flower Close-Up
  • Flower Grouping
  • Amazing Yard/Garden Landscape (We love Before/After Stories)
  • People Enjoying Gardens
  • Critters in the Garden (birds, cats, dogs, etc.)
  • Insects in the Garden (bees, butterflies, ladybugs, etc.)
  • Winter/Fall Interest in the Garden
  • Indoor Bloomers (Amaryllis, Paperwhites, etc.)
  • Spring-Blooming Bulbs
  • Patio/Container Gardens
  • High Country Gardens’ Pre-Planned Garden (Let us know which garden you’re featuring.)

Now, c’mon Gardening Gone Wild – go enter. Good Luck !

Saxon Holt
Saxon Holt is the owner of, a garden picture resource for photographs, on-line workshops, and garden photography stories. An award winning photojournalist and Fellow of The Garden Writers Association with more than 25 garden books, he lives and gardens in Northern California. PhotoBotanic - Garden Photography online at
Saxon Holt

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henry June 2, 2016, 10:01 am

Thanks. this is quite informative.

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