Category Archives: Local Shows

Village Show

It was my local Horticultural Society’s Summer Show yesterday and we had superb weather at the Village Hall. Whilst the vegetable entries were down understandably, the flower entries and other classes held their own for another successful local show.

After winning the cup for most points in the vegetable classes for the last three years I didn’t want to enter all the individual classes again – and I’d entered a few in last week’s Allotment Association Show, so it was just my shallots and any other veg (marrow) which achieved 1st and 2nd respectively. And I won the top tray although I was the only entry!

In the 4 Dahlia classes I entered I had a 1st (small), 2nd (minature), 1st (5 mixed) and 2nd (3 cactus) which I was pleased with.

And it was great to see some new faces taking prizes and cups which is what it’s all about!

This was my top tray entry of onions (Vento), Runner Beans (Stenner) and Potatoes (Kestrel).

And my shallots (Hative de Niort) – the same set I won with last week.

Finally my winning vase of 5 Dahlias (minimum 3 varieties). The girls entered their classes as well with Chloe taking the prizes for her leaf print picture, picture made from recycled material and play-doh flower. Winning £8 she took home more prize money than I did!

NVS Hampshire D.A. Show

Following on from my last post when I showed you my latest carrot growing success I put the 3 long carrots on the showbench at our NVS Hampshire DA mini-show last night. It was really interesting to hear newly appointed NVS Chairman Barry Newman’s expert judging feedback and he gave my carrots some favourable comments and 2nd place to Mr Blick’s superb set that also took overall best in show. Considering it’s my first attempt and I only had 3 long carrots to choose from I’m pretty happy with that. Pictured below you can see how great Darren’s set is and they would have graced any showbench at any level. No wonder he’s smiling and a nice little trophy for the mantlepiece too! You can follow Darren’s progress over at Blicky’s Blog.

So that’s it for this season. Good luck to all those entering the Midland Championship at Malvern a week on Saturday. Next year it’ll be an all out assault on the NVS Southern Championship at the New Forest & Hampshire County Show for me. I’m going to busy over the winter planning for that!!

Summer Show Results

Yesterday was the annual Winterslow & District Horticultural Society Summer Show and we had over 300 entries at the Village Hall for veg, flowers, jams, cookery, flower arranging and childrens.

I entered the veg for the 3rd year (of course) and Rachel went in for the 5 cookery classes with Chloe entering the three 3-6 year old classes. And here’s the results list:

Master Gardener (3 veg & flowers) – not entered
Society Top Tray – 1st (3 parsnips, 3 carrots, 3 potatoes)
Onions (larger than 250g) – unplaced
Onions (smaller than 250g) – not entered
6 shallots – 2nd
Truss of Tomatoes – not entered
5 Cherry Tomatoes – 3rd
5 Tomatoes – 1st
Carrots – 1st
5 Potatoes – 1st
5 Salad Potatoes – 1st
Beetroot – 2nd
Any other Root Veg – 1st (parsnips)
6 Runner Beans – 3rd
8 Dwarf Beans – 3rd
8 Climbing Beans – unplaced
2 courgettes – unplaced
2 indoor cucumbers – not entered
2 outdoor cucumbers – not entered
Any other Veg – unplaced (pair of marrows)
Collection of Veg from Garden – 2nd (Carrots, Squash, Celeriac, Chillies, Garlic)
Collection of Salad Veg from Garden – 1st (Lettuce, Cucumber, Beetroot, Tomatoes)
5 culinary herbs – 2nd

Flowers – entered 4 Dahlia classes
Miniture Dahlias – 1st
Small Dahlias – 2nd
3 Cactus Dahlias – 2nd
5 Dahlias – 2nd

5 Savoury Biscuits – 1st (Parmesan & Rosemary)
Summer Fruit Tart – 1st (Raspberry)
5 Sausage Rolls – 2nd
Millionaire’s Shortbread – 3rd
Cake from fruit/veg – 2nd (Courgette Cake)

Potato Face – 1st
Sponge Painting – Highly Commended
Collage of items collected on a summer’s walk – 2nd

For the veg I won the Top Tray shield, the Challenge Bowl for the most points in the roots veg section (were I only dropped one point getting a 2nd for beetroot), and the Joe Kiff Cup for the most points overall in the veg classes. Rachel won the Winterslow Cup for most points in the cookery and Chloe shared the Junior Class with two other children and received a certificate. What a fantastic result!! We were very pleased if a little worn out by the end of the day!

Thanks to all the competitors, the committee, judges, stewards, helpers and our local MP John Glen for presenting the prizes.

Here’s the best of the photos:

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One of these days I gotta get myself organizized

One of my favourite Travis Bickle quotes from one of my all-time favourite films, although not everyones cup of tea I’m sure. It rang true over the last few days with the stress and my own dis-organisation ahead of our Summer Show.

The show would not have been possible without the organisation by the Committee, Stewards and Judges. With over 300 exhibits I am told it took a good hour and a half to make all the decisions.

Our local MP, John Glen, kindly presented the prizes. Now I must admit John I switched off when you started talking about David Cameron’s Big Society, but I appreciate you giving up your Saturday to present the prizes for our Society. You don’t need to waste your words on us John, your Salisbury seat is as safe as houses (even in these toxic debt times!).

Then there’s the clean-up, the garden looks like a storm has been through, discarded veg trimmings all over the place. So that’s the first job, a good tidy.

And lastly to look ahead, as summer draws to a close, what do I need to sow to guarantee a continuation of crops? What will overwinter? Two years ago with a relatively mild winter my onions, garlic and shallots did well and got a good head start but would they have survived last winter if I’d have done the same? So many decisions to make.

Finally I’ve started to dig up the main crop spuds. The Desiree look good.

This is your last chance to enter my free Land’s End Gift Voucher and Seed giveaway. All you have to do is leave a comment on the post, just click here. I’ll be drawing the gift voucher winners and despatching the seeds this weekend.

100 Not Out – Summer Show Results

Two things to celebrate this weekend, my 100th post and the results of the Winterslow & District Horticultural Society’s Summer Show which took place this afternoon. For 2009’s results click here.

The village hall was full of exhibits in the vegetable, flower, homecraft, fruit, flower arranging and children’s categories. I spent Friday afternoon and evening preparing and was up early to get to the staging at 8.15am. Two hours later I left the hall after staging 40 odd exhibits pretty exhausted and then returned at 3pm for the results:

Master Gardener Shield for three veg and vase of flowers
Joe Kiff Bowl for most points overall vegetables
RHS Banksian Medal for most points overall vegetables & flowers
Tomato Cup – joint winner
Lindsay Edwards Cup for most points in non-root vegetables classes 14-19
Chloe won the Juniors Certificate and prize for most points in the under 5s

I was really pleased that all my efforts paid off and the trophies look great. As part of their affiliation the society applies to the RHS for one Banksian medal per year which they present as their top prize and I’m allowed to keep it.

Other Veg results:
Society Top Tray (3 veg) – 2nd, Shallots – 2nd, Small/Cherry Tomatoes – 1st, Carrots – 2nd, Potatoes – 3rd, Salad Potatoes – 2nd, Dwarf French Beans – 1st, Climbing French Beans – 1st, Cucumber – 2nd, Any Other Non-Root Vegetable – 1st, Vegetables from my garden – 3rd, Salad Vegetables – 1st, Herbs – 3rd.

Flowers: 3 small Dahlias (one variety) – 1st, 3 minature Dahlias (one variety) – 2nd, 5 Dahlias (3 varieties) – 1st, 3 Cactus Dahlias – 2nd, Gladioli – 1st, Asters – 3rd, Vase of flowers (pink and white) – 3rd.

You’ll remember from this post that Rach was busily preparing for the homecraft section. She did very well narrowly missing out on the trophy for baking: Jam (stoned fruit) – 2nd (Plum), Selection of 3 preserves – 3rd, Carrot Cake – 2nd, Sponge Fruit Flan – 3rd, Malt Loaf – 2nd, Mince Pies – 2nd, Cornish Pasties – 1st, Fudge – 1st. I came 2nd in the Men’s baking class with an Apple Cake.

Chloe won a 1st for her Cardboard Clockface and a 1st for her drawing of a house.

I shared the Tomato Cup with two others, we each won 1st in one of the three tomato classes.

I can’t believe I’ve reached my 100th post! What started in November last year tentatively as a journal has picked up pace over the last 6 months with 6000 views and the discovery of a community of like-minded people to share the high and lows of this sometimes frustrating, but mainly rewarding pastime of ours. Thanks for following my progress and I hope you’ve found the site enjoyable. And roll on next years show!!

Pre-Show Checks

Well the countdown to the village show run by my local Horticultural Society has well and truly begun. It’s 6 days away so I’m going around the garden checking on progress and seeing what I think will be ready for the big day. For last years write-up click here.

The main classes are Master Gardener and Society Top Tray.

Master Gardener (display space 24″ x 24″) – One vase of flowers and 3 vegetables from the list. One from Sweet Peas – 9 of any variety, Gladioli – 2 of any variety, Dahlias – 3 of any variety, or Perrenials – 9 of any variety. And 3 from Runner Beans – 6, Cabbages – 2, Cauliflower – 1, Carrots – 3, Onions – 3, Peas – 6 (pods), Potatoes – 6 (one variety), Tomatoes – 6.

I didn’t enter this class last year as I wasn’t growing any flowers, it’s most likely going to be glads or dahlias with runners, carrots and potatoes I think. Or I don’t enter again this year and pool my best veg in the other classes. Decisions, decisions…..

Society Top Tray (display space 18″ x 24″) – 3 vegetables from the list:- Carrots – 3, Onions – 3, Parnsips – 3, Peas – 6 pods, Potatoes – 3 one variety, Runner Beans – 6, Tomatoes – 6. I’ll probably be relying on parsnips, runners and spuds for this one, possibly carrots if I have enough decent ones.

The Dahlia bed is looking good. I should be able to enter some of these into the show. The varieties I’m growing are Shooting Star, My Love, Firebird, Hayley Jane, Kennermaland, Vancouver, Black Cat, Le Baron and Pompon Flow Mix (various small ball types). In containers I have Bristol Stripe, Babylon Bronze, Atika, Kenora, Purple Gem and Kelvin Floodlight. For more Dahlia posts click here, here and here.

This is Shooting Star.

Hayley Jane.

Le Baron.

Black Cat.

The Gladioli are looking good, should have some ready at the right time.

Courgettes are a tricky class as I need three around 6″ long with flowers.

I need two cucumbers, they have their own class and can go into the salad veg selection.

The squash will go into the any other veg and selection of veg from my garden categories.

Peppers will go into the selection of veg category. Possibly some of the aubergines and chillies too.

The pumpkins are doing well. I’ve grown a couple of plants from the seeds Maureen sent me, the variety is Rouge Vif d’etamps.

And Chloe and I were in the garden harvesting the plum tree which produces hundreds of these tiny plums. Chloe loves them!

Don’t forget my free Land’s End Gift Voucher and Seed giveaway that I launched earlier this month. All you have to do is leave a comment on the post, just click here. I’ll be drawing the gift voucher winners and despatching the seeds towards the end of the month.

Domestic Goddess

Well not me obviously but Rach has been going mad in the kitchen ahead of the Summer Show next Saturday. So far I have sampled, and given verdict on, Carrot Cake (all gone), Malt Loaf, Lemon Curd, Plum and Strawberry jam. All very good and I can’t wait to try batch 2 of the cakes after the show. Still to come are sponge fruit flan, mince pies, cornish pasties and home made fudge. Oh and the pile of chutney we made last summer. This tasting job is hard work!