Thursday, 19 September 2013

Show Time at Harrogate

This weekend we had a weekend off from gardening at Easter Mosshat and headed to the Harrogate Autumn Flower show, run by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS). I went to their Harrogate Spring Show many years ago, possible even BC (Before Children!). Despite the weather deteriorating into blustery, rainy autumnal weather, we were lucky. The sun it was exceptionally warm and we even managed to sit outside with our lunch and soak up the sun while we ate.

The Artist's Garden

The RHS runs several shows over the summer in various locations, the most famous of course being Chelsea in May. Harrogate is more compact and has that wonderful Yorkshire touch: the accents, the laid back no-nonsense approach to life and a wonderful food hall. I thought I'd lost my partner David for good in there! Having experienced many shows, both as an exhibitor and as a visitor I always enjoy seeing garden and flower shows, to see what's new and get ideas for Easter Mosshat. There were the usual outdoor stands of every type of garden ornament and tool to make your life easier and some classy sculptures I would very happily install at Easter Mosshat if it wasn't for the price tag! We wandered past some of these stands to the floral halls where the Chrysanthemum, Dahlia, Fuchsia, Bonsai and Cacti championships were being held. As you might expect the entries in all these categories were impressive.


Being such foodies we enjoyed the food hall, where there was a great range of pies, cheeses and drinks. We ended up going back later in the day for pork pies with amazing toppings for our lunch.

The National Vegetable Championships

I was disappointed at the lack of outdoor gardens. Usually these can be interesting, innovative, quirky and a source of good ideas, but there were only three this year. One was very good: an artist's garden using a shepherds hut and lots of late summer herbaceous colour and grasses. The other was a children's garden using lots of colour and recycled materials. We liked a greenhouse made out of plastic fizzy juice bottles.Finally we came to the floral hall, containing many nurseries and their displays of plants. In this hall there was also the Regional and National Vegetable Championships. These monsters had to be seen to be believed! From carrots a yard long to marrows heavier than David; from perfect baskets of fruit to pumpkins you could fit Cinderella in, they were amazing!

Jerry

All in all it was a good show. We were lucky with the weather and we brought home two giraffes! Seeing David take a seven foot tall giraffe and it's baby on the bus back to the car park was highly amusing, both to me and the other passengers in the bus! They will probably end up in the woodland borders in the summer, just for fun and because we can. I would definitely recommend the show, especially because it's in Yorkshire, one of my favourite places.




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