A first-time entrant and a festival veteran are among the gold medal winners at the Ellerslie International Flower Show.
Judges on Tuesday awarded eight gold medals to exhibitors in five categories that attracted 80 entrants.
Wellington student Bayley LuuTomes, who entered the festival for the first time this year, won the gold award for the student designer of the year.
He says he had to take a month off from his studies to create the garden and would have never have completed it in time without help fromhis mother.
Exhibitor Ben Hoyle, who has entered nine times, won gold for his garden, A French Kiss in Akaroa.
The festival opens to the public on Wednesday, with about 50,000 people expected to attend over the next five days.