Two dedicated neighbours win best gardens among over 2000 Christchurch social housing units

It's a coveted title, winning the best garden out of over 2000 Christchurch social housing units.

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1 NEWS reporter Lisa Davies went to meet them. Source: 1 NEWS

And this year the top prizes have gone to two dedicated neighbours at the Reg Adams Courts in Papanui.

It's hard to get 79-year-old Irene Barr to stop gardening.

"I can't be without a garden. It just helps, it helps with the mood," she told 1 NEWS.

The hours of work by Ms Barr and her 86-year-old neighbour Alice Tomlins haven't gone unnoticed by the Ōtautahi Community Housing Trust.

Cate Kearney of the trust told the two women, "You have been two of our most wonderful gardeners. Alice, you have done stunningly this year, and you have won".

Ms Kearney said the garden awards "are about recognising people's hard work, the hours they've put in, the love they've put in".

Ms Tomlins has Parkinson's disease. 

"I think its an eye opener to all of us. It doesn't matter what you've got wrong with you you can always do something for yourself," said Ms Barr, who was runner up.

It will take more than a tremor to keep Ms Tomlins her from her flower beds.

But with water restrictions in place, the two gardeners sometimes struggle to follow the rules.

"We are trying to do it alternately, but if anything desperately needs watering it's going to get some. I'm sorry," Ms Barr said.

But mainly, it takes love and the two ladies invest a lot of love for their gardens to flourish.