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Great weather helps attendence at 2007 Harrogate Spring Flower Show

The 2007 gardening season got off to a great start as warm Spring sunshine enticed tens of thousands of visitors to the 80th Harrogate Spring Flower Show at the Great Yorkshire Showground at the weekend.

The Daffodil Show was rather less spectacular than usual due to the unusually early season, which saw growers trying desperately to hold back their blooms by putting them into cold storage. However visitors were treated to many other compensating delights as other plants came into flower earlier than one might expect at the end of April.

The winner of the coveted ‘Best in Show’ amongst the horticultural nurseries was Edrom Nursery from Berwickshire with an exquisite display of woodland and alpine plants. Askham Bryan College picked up a Silver Gilt award for their Japanese-influenced show garden. This garden will be recreated later on this year as the UK entry in the prestigious World Skills competition in the former Olympic village in Shizuoka, Tokyo. Keith Chapman and Tim Lancaster, both students at the college, won the national final in the UK heats at Coventry in February.

Melanie Garbutt from Passion Flowers, Upton, Pontefract, won ‘Best in Show’ for the Floristry section with a bridal bouquet featuring a selection of sweets incorporated into the design. Susan Fairhurst, Lancaster, picked up ‘Best in Show’ for her flower arrangement depicting ‘Tropical Waters’ and New Dimensions won the NAFAS Club Class.

The new Richard Inman Trophy was won by the Hardy Plant Society for their educational display in the Plant Society marquee. Richard was a long-standing council member of the North of England Horticultural Society and an fervent supporter of the amateur societies’ presence at the show.

NEHS Show Director, Roger Brownbridge, said, “We are delighted with the visitor numbers this year, with an increase of 7% on the 2006 Spring figures. Exhibitors start every horticultural season with their fingers crossed and as always, the Harrogate show hopefully never disappoints, with many companies reporting excellent sales. We believe in offering value for money and have a very loyal visitor base who come to both Spring and Autumn Shows year on year.”

Many of the plant societies involved remarked that there is growing interest amongst the younger age group. The Thompson & Morgan show garden which showed how vegetables could be used decoratively in a small space proved particularly popular and the Northern Fruit Group and National Vegetable Society were delighted that so many people came along to find out how to grow their own.

“One good reason to visit a major flower show is that it gives visitors the opportunity to consult one-to-one with experts,“ said NEHS Press Officer Mary Bond. “Where else could you talk to garden designers, bonsai specialists, orchid growers and bulb specialists, to name but a few? At both the Harrogate Shows you’ll find all this and more is included in the price of your ticket.”

The 2007 Harrogate Autumn Flower Show is on at the Great Yorkshire Showground from 14 – 16 September. Tickets will go on sale from mid-June.

NEHS Press Release

Posted: 29 April 2007

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