The Edinburgh and Lothians branch of the SRGC hold a show here in Edinburgh annually. Being that it is very local for me, a ten minute drive round the city bypass, made it an ideal candidate in which I could dip my toe into the water so too speak. Alpine plants have always fascinated me and have admired them more often than not, from afar! As my confidence in gardening is growing - I am hoping that I can turn my hand to growing some of these special little plants. The main purpose was to get some inspiration and talk to the people who grow them.
I met some lovely people on the day. They were very willing to discuss their plants and more importantly answer some of the questions I put their way. I did feel like a bit of a duck out of water - the show format was sort of baffling for a first timer! I've since found that the show rules are available on their website - now that I've read them, I can look back with a bit more understanding.
As I walked into the hall - I was taken aback by the riot of colour that greeted me. Members, visitors et al formed an orderly queue - I stood patiently in line until it was my turn. There was plenty of oohing and aahing. Heads were nodding, grins were beaming and appreciation was apparent. The dedication and commitment could not be ignored.
The most coveted award in the show is the George Forrest Memorial Medal. Named after George Forrest the Scottish plant collector and explorer.
"the winner is........Hepatica Transylvanica - exhibitied by David Boyd"
A few more shots of these fascinating little woodlanders
|Hepatica Ashwood strain|
On the opposite side of the hall - pans of Primulas were lined up - their exhibitors, no doubt, waiting with anxiety just a few minutes before the doors were opened and results revealed. Here are a few,
|Left to Right|
Primula Gold Lace, Primula Jackie Richards and Primula Blindsee
|Various prize winning Primula|
|Perfect white blooms|
By far the largest exhibitor on the day was the Royal Botanical Gardens of Edinburgh their display was astounding and had I more room and a proper camera (not my phone) with me - I could have show cased this panoramic scene better. Here are a couple of shots from the display
|Various bulbs inc. Muscari, Narcissus and Fritillaria|
|Fritillaria towering above|
|More spring bulbs|
The vast amount of spring bulbs on display was to say the least, impressive - I wondered if the extended winter that we have seen this year has anything to do with the selection displayed at the show. Having looked back at previous show reports it seems so! Not that it hampered my enjoyment of the show, far from it!
My favourites of the day.....
|Crocus 'Prins Claus'|
There was a few nurseries displaying their wares along with an SRGC members plant sales table. I was speaking to the owner of the local nursery I frequently use - he told me that despite the hall only being open for a short time - sales were good and plants were just flying off the tables! I cheekily told him that I would not be buying from him, I could do that any time and if I'm being completely honest - I already had most of the plants he was selling that interests me! He just laughed and with a little wink said 'See you next weekend!' - he knows me well!
As I wandered from seller to seller - I felt it only fair that I should not show favouritism and purchased a little something from each of them. That will be a topic for another blog of course but as I already had a little project in my mind before going - I'm going to have an attempt at something like this
These miniature gardens are fascinating - I'm hoping that I can recreate something similar. Now that I've bought the plants - I'm excited to get started. I have finally managed to find a local source of Tufa rock so will try to get there at the weekend.
I hope you have enjoyed my novice look around the Scottish Rock Garden show but if you would like to learn or read more, the 2013 report has just been published and you can read it here.