Botanics Best: wonders of nature caught on camera

Judges of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) Photography Competition 2013 were set an arduous task when asked to select nine winning images from 246 entries. Faced with quality shots from all four of the organisation’s Gardens, they deemed the fourth annual Friends of RBGE fund-raiser to be an outright success.

“The judges were very impressed,” commented Membership Manager Inger Kristiansen-Bragg. “The photographers had clearly worked hard and the calibre of their entries made selecting the winners a difficult task.”

Overall winner Alan Pyke explained how the changing nature of the Edinburgh Garden continued to inspire him: “There's always something that catches the imagination no matter the season,” he said. “I'm drawn to speckled light. So, when I saw a leaf back-lit by a ray of sunlight, I walked over. There was an ant running across it and the little silhouette stood out against the vivid back-lit colours.”

James Ratchford took his prize-winning Wildlife in the Garden picture in Edinburgh’s Demonstration Garden. “It was impossible not to notice the lively insects buzzing around the wildflowers and I spent some time waiting for them to rest long enough to get a focused picture. There are so many things that I love about the Gardens, the quiet and calm atmosphere seems so far from the city.” 

This year’s competition raised £732 for RBGE’s Small Project Fund. During the last 12 months, the fund supported projects from all four Gardens, including a Terrific Trees Trail at Dawyck, in the Scottish Borders, and the re-curation of the Rosaceae Herbarium collections at Edinburgh.

The winning photographs will be on show in the RBGE Library Foyer, weekdays from November 5 to December 2. Next year it will travel to the Regionals at Dawyck, Logan, in Dumfries & Galloway and Benmore, near Dunoon, in Argyll.

Click here to see the winning entries.

The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is a charity (registration number SC007983)