All-America Selections recently honored two iconic journalists with the AAS Medallion of Honor at the annual AAS/NGB Awards Banquet. This year’s banquet was held at Cantigny Park and Gardens in Wheaton, Illinois, one of the two hundred AAS Display Gardens across North America.
The AAS/NGB Awards Banquet is a time-honored celebration where industry representatives, judges, breeders, growers, retailers and resellers gathered for the annual AAS and NGB Summer Summit. This year’s event was held for the first-time ever in conjunction with the annual PPA symposium.
The 2019 event included tours of The Gardens at Ball Horticultural Company, Cantigny Gardens, Lurvey Garden Center, Chicago Botanic Garden, Chalet Nursery and Lurie Garden.
AAS Medallion of Honor
The prestigious AAS Medallion of Honor is typically presented to one individual who has given a lifelong dedication to the advancement of horticulture and contribution in raising the visibility of All-America Selections Winners.
All-America Selections announced that for the first time ever, the 2019 Medallion of Honor was given to not just one, but two recipients who also just happen to be husband and wife. This year’s recipients are Doug and Karen Weir-Jimerson.
Doug started his career at Better Homes & Gardens in 1976 and worked his way up to executive garden editor, serving that publication for more than three decades. As a freelance writer, Karen is the author of countless magazine stories and books, including 15 in the Better Homes and Gardens brand. Together, this dynamic duo established the first Better Home and Gardens Test Garden at their family farm outside Des Moines, Iowa. That garden is now located at the Meredith headquarters in downtown Des Moines. The Jimerson home and garden became a gathering place for other editors and writers to grow, photograph and observe new varieties and especially the AAS award-winning plants. Doug and Karen were the editorial force of Garden.com, one of the first gardening e-commerce businesses in the 1990’s, where they frequently wrote about and sold AAS Winners. As the years progress, Doug and Karen are continuing their writing work via Studio G, a creative agency they formed that specializes in garden, pet and food editorial.
"The goal of every garden journalist is to help make home gardeners successful," says Doug Jimerson. "That's why I've spent much of my career promoting AAS award winners. Because these plants have performed well in trial gardens across North America, I can be confident that my readers will have success, too."
"We have grown All-America Selections winners in our gardens for more than 30 years," says Karen Weir-Jimerson. "It's exciting to see the flower and vegetable varieties become popular, showing up in gardens across the country."