You’ve seen those gorgeous garden photos published in magazines and newspapers. Enter this year’s competition and have a chance of getting your images published, too! Whether you take the photos in your own backyard, a nearby public garden, or while visiting friends and family in their local gardens, there are so many photographic opportunities to be found. Let’s show off the best in DC-area gardening!

This contest offers an opportunity for all photographers to present their best shots of gardens in the greater Washington, DC, area. Contest entries will be judged on technical quality, composition, originality, and artistic merit. More than $500 in prizes will be awarded! Winning images will be published in Washington Gardener magazine, displayed during the Washington Gardener Seed Exchange, and appear in a local photo exhibit.

Each entrant is limited to a total of 10 images. Each electronic file must be identified with your last name and entry category. For example, GardenCreature1-Jones.jpg or SmallWonders8.-Smith.jpg. All photographs should accurately reflect the subject matter and the scene as it appeared in the viewfinder. Nothing should be added to an image and, aside from dust spots, nothing should be removed. Cropping and minor adjustments to electronic images to convert RAW files are acceptable.

If an image is selected as a finalist, a high-resolution digital file might be required before finalizing our results. Digitally captured images should be taken at the camera’s highest resolution (3 megapixels or larger). For preliminary judging, digital files must be submitted in JPEG format sized to 1,000 pixels on the longest side at 300 dpi. If photos are taken with a film camera, they must be scanned in and submitted in JPEG format sized to 1,000 pixels on the longest side at 300 dpi.

Contest entries can be submitted via email to Use the subject line “WG Photo Contest” and include an entry form for each image in your email’s text field. Entries can also be sent as a CD-ROMs. Please verify their integrity by making sure they are readable and not damaged. We reserve the right to disqualify any disk that is unreadable or defective. Please check your CDs with the latest virus-detection software. We will disqualify any disk that appears to contain a virus or a suspicious file.

Label each CD and case with your full name. We strongly suggest mailing CDs in protective cases. We are not responsible for disks damaged during shipping. No CDs will be returned, but they can be picked up after judging. Send your entries and entry fee to: Washington Gardener Photo Contest, 826 Philadelphia Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20910. Mailed entries must be received by January 21, 2022. You can print out blank entry forms from the Washington Gardener blog ( or from our Facebook page. We will verify all entries, so please ensure your email address is included on all items. Entrants must not infringe on the rights of any other photographer, landowner, or other person. Photos involving willful harassment of wildlife or destruction of any property are unacceptable. The entrant must have personally taken the photo. By entering, you state this is your work and it is free of copyright elsewhere. Failure to comply with any contest guidelines will lead to disqualification.

Your entry to this contest constitutes your agreement to allow your photographs and your name, city, state, and photo description texts to be published in upcoming issues of Washington Gardener and used for other related purposes including, but not limited to, Washington Gardener Photo Contest promotions and online, live presentations, and gallery exhibits. Entrants retain ownership and all other rights to future use of their photographs.

Each entrant is limited to a total of 10 images. You may submit a few in each category or submit all 10 in one category. Photos must have been taken during the 2021 calendar year in a garden located within a 150-mile radius of the Capitol Building in Washington, DC.

  • Garden Views: Beautiful, dramatic, or unusual perspectives of a garden landscape, including wide shots showing the setting. Subject can be a private or public garden.
  • Garden Vignettes: Groupings of plants in beds or containers, unusual color or texture combinations, garden focal points, and still scenes. Subject can be photographed in a private or public garden.
  • Small Wonders: Tight close-up images or macro shots of single flowers, plant parts, fruits, vegetables, etc. Subject can be photographed in a private or public garden.
  • Garden Creatures: Images of insects, birds, frogs, pets, etc., in a private or public garden setting.

Prizes include gift certificates to area camera stores, gardening tools, new plant introductions, and much more! If you would like to be a prize donor or sponsor, contact us today.

Photo contest winners will need to provide high-resolution versions of their images for publication and an 11×14 print suitable for framing. Winners may be asked to provide additional information for press and media coverage.

The entry fee is $20.00 or $15.00 for current Washington Gardener Magazine subscribers. The fee includes up to 10 total image submissions per entrant. Please send a check or money order made out to “Washington Gardener” or send a payment via to

Entries are due by midnight on January 21, 2022.

Please call 301.588.6894 or email

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