Once again, we would like to say a big thank you to all our 2022 Young Horticulturist Competition Finalists, Trust Members, Speakers and Sponsors who attended the Professional Development Day on Tuesday 9th May 2023.

This is a one-day event at the Auckland Botanic Gardens held six months post Competition where our Finalist develop their emerging leadership capabilities through networking, hearing presentations and receiving leadership training such as personality profiling and goal setting.

Although the day consisted of heavy rain and an Emergency Alert for Auckland due to flooding, we were able to proceed safely in the Logan Campbell room at the Gardens including a well-earned lunch break up at Café Miko.

The day started off with Patrick Malley, our 2014 Young Horticulturist Winner, and we were thrilled to have him speaking for us again!  We loved hearing Patrick's back story and where his Horticultural career has taken him to date as he takes us through Life after Competition.  Our Finalists thought he was a great speaker, very interactive, inclusive and encouraging of everyone's thinking and sharing of ideas.  They appreciated how genuine Patrick was his his approachability for questioning.

Candice Collier from Belbin Leadership Solutions joined us again this year with leadership profiling and training which is a great tool to strengthen leadership capabilities.  Belbin provides the Finalists a fantastic opportunity to receive feedback from those around them and learn about different work styles and how to use them to create well rounded teams.  Candice as always is so passionate, knowledgeable and with her strong beliefs, aids in the benefits for our Finalists to grow.  This is a great interactive session where the Finalists all worked on their individual leadership styles.  

New Bronze Sponsor and supporter Pedro Wylaars from Zealandia Horticulture gave a great insight into Leadership in the Field.  The Finalists thought Pedro was brilliant, they loved hearing how he has forged a path in the industry and enjoyed hearing his insights on leadership and growing people.  Pedro was very inspiring and engaged with all the Finalists.

We completed this years Professional Development Day with some great financial advice from our Bronze Sponsor ANZ Bank.  Becky, a Senior Relationship Manager took them through financial advice to further their projects, to starting their own business.  The Finalists thought this was a very beneficial, excellent, informative session with great relevance, interest and use of financial advice.  Becky did a wonderful job relating to the Finalists and making it interesting for them!

We would also like to thank Friends of the Competition, Auckland Botanic Gardens, for hosting our Professional Development Day.  Due to the torrential weather the lovely Garden Tour was cancelled but everyone was very adaptable to keep us all safe and make the day a success!