National Viola and Pansy Society Newsletter Autumn 1997

Ayr Show

The only major flower show in which violas and pansies may be exhibited in any quantity, 29 classes including 6 for novice growers. I had hoped to exhibit for the first time this year, but the heat of August did not leave me with anything in a fit state to show. Even further north, the weather had taken its toll and there was a general lack of entries. However, as in all florist societies there is always a small band of growers who manage to bench exhibits whatever the conditions, and in so doing make the show.

In this case Hamilton, Johnston and Macgregor were the names making up most of the exhibits. Sonya Ferguson mounted an impressive collection of bedding varieties in the display class as well as a good looking basket. John Hamilton continued what has been a good showing year by taking the Scottish Championship. This is a difficult class that calls for six Show Pansies, six Fancy Pansies, and six Exhibition Violas; six varieties of each is a real test of a florist's skill. Garden News readers will have seen John Hamilton and Rose Macgregor photographed with their exhibits.

Despite having no blooms, Christine and I were made most welcome, indeed John Hamilton stayed up all night in case I should need help in staging. President Tom McLatchie greeted us warmly and over tea my viola and pansy education was once more extended. Overall, Ayr is a comfortable and relaxed show in comparison with the bustle of Shrewsbury. I only hope that its projected move to a bigger ground does not spoil those qualities. I intend to return next year, with blooms. As a postscript, upon my return to Shropshire, I was greeted by several rows of Hugh Campbell, Mina Walker and Ada Jackson: all of course in perfect condition and ready to show! On reflection, rather better than having them go over too early.

Secretary's Notes Subscriptions Awards to Blooms Schedule Changes for 1998 A.G.M. Annual Show Shrewsbury
Ayr Show Kings Heath The Pansy Around the Gardens Ceri Bowen Plant Distribution 1998 Society Library

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