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  • Writer's pictureHorticultural Society

Growing and Showing: Tips for Successful Exhibiting

In this post, we're going to delve into the art of "Growing and Showing." Whether you're a seasoned exhibitor or just starting out, Chairman Chris Anderson and seasoned resident expert Charles Matthews have shared some invaluable tips and insights to help you succeed in showcasing your best produce and floral arrangements at our society's events.

1. Know Your Show Schedule: One of the first steps to successful exhibiting is thoroughly reading the show schedule. It's your roadmap to understanding what's expected in each category. Ensure your exhibit aligns precisely with the schedule's requirements. This attention to detail can make all the difference in the judges' eyes.

2. Uniformity and Cleanliness: For vegetable exhibits, uniformity is key. Aim for consistency in size, shape, and colour. While cleanliness is important, avoid overdoing it. Scrubbing vegetables like potatoes can strip away their natural skins, so a gentle cleaning is usually sufficient.

3. Allow Space for Your Exhibits: To make your vegetables and flowers shine, they need space to breathe. If you're displaying items like potatoes, use an appropriately sized plate or container to prevent overcrowding. This not only enhances their visual appeal but also ensures fairness in judging.

4. Floral Arrangements - Complement, Don't Overpower: When it comes to floral arrangements, your accessories should complement your exhibit, not steal the spotlight. The focus should be on your flowers. Simplicity often wins, so remember that "less is more."

5. The Power of Knowing Varieties: While not always a strict requirement, knowing the variety of the flowers you're exhibiting can be a helpful tidbit for curious visitors. It showcases your knowledge and adds a layer of professionalism to your display.

6. Date Your Preserves: For those submitting jars of jam, chutney, or jelly, remember to write the date on the front label. This simple step is not only good practice but also ensures transparency for judges and potential buyers.

7. The Chairman's Challenge - Onions and Presentation: For this year's Chairman's Challenge, don't forget to bring your onions. But it's not just about bringing them; it's about presenting them properly. Chris Anderson discussed this in detail during the Growing and Showing lecture, so be sure to apply those insights when showcasing your onions.


The "Growing and Showing" aspect of our society is not just about competition; it's an opportunity to share your love for gardening, horticulture, and creativity with fellow enthusiasts. By following Charles Matthews' and Chairman Chris Anderson's tips, paying attention to the details, you can make the most of your exhibition experiences. Good luck at The Autumn Show on the 30th September, and may your exhibits shine brightly in the event!

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