The horticultural pavilion at the upcoming Maitland Show provides an ideal opportunity for gardeners to observe plants, vegetables and flowers that are growing in local gardens.
Entries and displays in the pavilion will feature a variety of horticultural pursuits, including; vegetables, flowers, pot plants, fruits and floral art.
Flower entries will include; dahlias, roses, native plants and flowers found in the average suburban garden.
The 158th Maitland Show will be held from Friday, February 15 to Sunday, February 17.
The pavilion will be open for public viewing, following the judging, on Friday from 9am.
Floral art entries are designed and put together as interpretations of given topics. Note the staging area restrictions for each grade.
Topics for A Grade this year these include: “’Celebrate the Land’ using Colonial Embellishments”, “Summer Brilliance”, “Driftwood Adds Strength to Beauty” and “Luscious Leaves with Fruit”. There is also a section for wired flower work – “Two Sprays for a Wedding Cake”. A Grade staging is limited to 43cm deep and 56cm long.
B Grade topics are: “’Celebrate the Land’ with Fruit and Vegetables”, “Colour without Flowers”, “Feminine Charm” and “My Country-using Natives”. The wired topic is “Groom’s Buttonhole”. B Grade entries are restricted to staging 43cm deep and 50cm long.
For Grade C entrants, the topics are: “Celebrate the Land’ using Seeds, Grains and Grasses”, “The Beauty of Flowers”, “A Novel Container of Flowers”, and “Welcome to our House”.
Children and young adults are also able to compete in the floral art sections.
Novice (under 18 years of age) have the following themes; ““Celebrate the Land” with Cows and Sheep”, “Beauty with a Fan” and “Around & About”.
Children in infants and primary classes might like to complete one or more of these topics: “Celebrate the Land” - a plate garden, “Bird made from Plant Material”, and “Flowers with a Small Toy”, Large and small vegetables, and a plant growing in a pot may also be entered.
Entrants in the floral art section are allowed to use any embellishments except for artificial flowers. Judges will examine entries for creative interpretation of the selected topic. Flowers and greenery used should be of good quality.
Local gardeners are encouraged to put in entries from their own gardens, green houses and collections. A fee of $0.50 per entry applies in each section, up to a total of $10, has been set. Prize money, cards and champion ribbons are awarded.
Gardeners who would like to put in entries should start to look around their gardens now in order to find suitable plants and flowers. Remember, however, that all gardeners placing entries will have had their plants and flowers subject to the same weather conditions. These may include extreme temperature ranges and hot, drying winds. Therefore, all flowers will be suffering from similar defects. This should not deter the gardener from entering exhibits.
If entering pot plants, the owner should ensure the outside of the pot is clean and in good condition. Leaves should be cleaned of dust, spray markings and other markings. Dead leaves should be removed, and the surface of the soil should be clean and tidy. Note that pots with a base greater than 30cm cannot be displayed.
Flowers selected for the cut flower sections should be as free as possible from blemishes and leaves should be clean. Entries are displayed in glass bottles, supplied by the Show Society. Entrants should take particular notice of how the flowers should be displayed, including whether they are to be single or multiple blooms. Flowers should be placed into the bottle, with water, so that they display their best appearance. Strips of newspaper may be used to support the flowers stems in the bottle. Any foliage used must from the foliage of the displayed flower.
Gardeners who grow vegetables might like to put some of their garden’s produce in to sections such as: basket of vegetables, best pumpkin, squash, onions, small vegetables and salad vegetables. Fruits (including nuts, figs and grapes) and melons (including watermelons and rock melons) may also be entered. Gardeners who wish to enter individual blooms, pot plants or floral art arrangements or fruit and vegetables in the different competitions should take their entries to the horticultural pavilion.
It is important to note the closing times for the different sections. Pot plants entries close on Thursday at 7pm and must be staged between 5pm and 8pm on that day. Floral art entries close at 8am on Friday. Entries may be staged between 5pm and 8pm on Thursday, and between 7.30am and 9am on Friday. Cut flower entries close at 9am on Friday. They may be staged between 5pm and 8pm on Thursday and also between 7.30am and 9.30am on Friday. Vegetable and fruit entries must be staged between 5pm and 8pm on Thursday, with entries closing at 8pm.
Further details are contained in the horticulture schedule, available from the Show Society office. It is important for entrants to read the schedule carefully so they place entries as described in the schedule. Entries that are not as described will be disqualified.