Matt’s an Horticultural Star

Published Wednesday, 5th December 2012 in Education news

Hortic awards ceremony

Matthew Lowe, a 3rd year SRUC Horticulture student from North Berwick, was named Westland Star of the Future at the Recent Garden Retail Awards.

Chosen from entrants from across the UK, Matt, 21, won his garden industry ‘Oscar’ for ‘displaying great ambition, innovation and the drive to become a leader of tomorrow’.

Matt has been interested in gardening from a young age and switched from studying Geology at University to an Honours Degree in Horticulture with SAC (now SRUC, Scotland’s Rural College). He was one of the team of Garden Design students who won a Silver Gilt medal for their Artisan Garden at last years Chelsea Flower Show, going on to win a Gold and “Best in Show” at Gardening Scotland.

When not studying, Matt works as a Plant Area Assistant at Merryhatton Garden Centre. They entered him for the award. 

“We felt he fitted the bill perfectly,” explains Merryhatton’s owner, Helen MacDonald.  “In under two years, Matt has progressed from being a seasonal worker at Merryhatton to become a lead member of our plant team. He helps customers with all kinds of gardening queries, even helping them plant their garden on occasion.”

Matt received his award at a black tie awards dinner at London’s Grosvenor hotel:

“When I found out I was shortlisted for the award I was over the moon, and then to actually win was amazing!” he said. “I’d love to think that this might inspire other people to realise that horticulture is a great career to get into. I know it’s the ideal field for me, with lots of opportunities for the future.”
SRUC Program Leader in Horticulture, Dr. Margaret Norton Head congratulated Matt.

“He is a shining example of what we want our students to be. Already at the age of twenty one and three years into his degree he has already gained sound practical experience to add to his academic qualifications. Our industry needs that mix of skills at all levels and SRUC strives to achieve that.”

Photo caption: (L-R) John McDowell from Westland Horticulture, Matt, Roy Walker.

More articles in the news archive.