At ease in front of the camera - Rubie shows seedlings ready for planting in one of her submitted pictures.

Your Vote’s Needed


Judges (one of whom was Rudd Kleinpaste) of the Yates Budding Young Gardener competition have  just announced the regional winners and now it’s public voting that determines the overall National title of New Zealand winner.

It’s hoped News readers will get behind young Darfield gardener, eight year old Rubie Leech, who has just taken the title of Regional (Canterbury/West Coast) Budding Young Gardener. Rubie now goes up against the six other regional winners to be eligible for a family trip to Australia which includes passes to three Gold Coast theme parks – and it will all depend on public voting from here! Voting is now open and closes on October 6th.

“To enter this competition, Rubie had to enter either a photo, or a video, of her and her garden and also answer some gardening questions such as who her biggest gardening inspiration is and what she likes to grown in her garden, and why,” reported Rubie’s mum Kylie.

“Rubie loves presenting, so decided to enter a video.  In her video, along with fruit trees plus the vegetable and herb gardens, she and her little brother Harry exhibited some great faces after trying some lemons from the tree! She also included some footage of her planting some seedlings for her garden as well,” Kylie added.

For winning the regional section, Rubie wins a Yates gardening hamper worth over $300, plus a place in the final round.

“Although the theme parks in the final prize are a massive attraction to Rubie, her greatest wish to win the trip to Australia is because it would mean that she would get to see her Great Aunty and Uncle, who she is very fond of,” Kylie explained. The grand prize also includes a home visit from a Yates horticulturist to pass on some great skills and tips.

Rudd Kleinpaste commented that he felt the next generation of New Zealanders is becoming more and more disconnected from nature as digital devices demand more time. “The Yates Budding Young Gardener aims to celebrate a love of gardening and encourage children of all levels of capability to further develop their passion. Whether children are just starting out, or have been gardening for a few years and know how to sow seeds, rustle up a few radishes and turn lemons into lemonade – this competition is for them,” Rudd enthused.

“We’re really hoping that Malvern News readers will get online and vote for Rubie,” Kylie said. “It’s an absolutely amazing prize and she’d be absolutely thrilled to win it.”