Harrogate Spring Show 2013

Once again I have had the pleasure of visiting the Harrogate Spring Show something I try to do every year.

Usually I upload any pictures I take up to the WWW in a Gallery format, so by way of a change I thought I would produce my experience in a Blog.

The Harrogate Spring show is the earliest of the major horticultural shows, and geographically it is the nearest one to where I live in West Yorkshire, so I always see it as the herald to another growing season.

Each year the visit also gives me the opportunity to meet up with friends from South Yorkshire who I only see at the various horticultural shows, e.g. Tatton Park and the Harrogate Autumn show.

I also like to meet up with the many stall holders and exhibitors I have befriended over the years, where we discuss, and compare notes on our previous years successes and failures, and there were lots of these in 2012!

So all in all, this relationship offers the makings of a good day from the outset!

The Show:

As always when we arrive, we start the day off in the cafe, and discuss our plans for the day over a cup of coffee.

Once we have refreshed ourselves the routine then is: the ladies go their way, and the men theirs, then we meet up somewhere for lunch.

During lunch we have another chat and compare notes and decide what we want to do in the afternoon, then again we split up and do our own thing.

This procedure has many advantages, not least, that if one of us stops at a stall to have a look at something, the rest of us are not hanging around waiting, meaning we can spend more time on our preferred areas of interest.

Back to the show:

The general content of the show is very much the same each year with many of the same visitors, exhibitors and trades people returning each year.

The organisers are grateful for this regular clientele so they try and introduce new features each year for us, this year they added Show Gardens designed by Professional Designers which I will discuss later in the blog.

I plan on discussing the different features in show in roughly five or six parts, so that if needs be you can dwell on the parts that interest you most.

I will start as I did at the show, and that was to visit the:

Amateur Show Gardens:

These gardens are designed and constructed by students from the various Horticultural Colleges, and volunteers from various Charitable institutions.

I found due to the size of some of the gardens, and the fact that I do not have a wide angle lense for my camera, I had to take pictures from different angles in the hope that I would capture the intentions of the designers.

So please accept my apologies for any confusion this may cause!


Askham Bryan Horticultural College - The Flow:

This garden was in two parts which I guess was to comply with the allocated area.

Having said that, given sufficient area the two parts could have been joined together to create a larger water feature, or left as shown here!

I thought this was quite innovative as it doubles your options!

I decided to photograph each end and the middle in the hope that I would catch the effect.


One End




Opposite end

click on pictures to enlarge:


Craven College: - Chiaroscuro

Craven College: - Chill in out


Horticap College - The Living Room:

Horticap is a training college for people with learning disabilities.

80% of this exhibit is constructed from recycled materials!


Finchale College - Waste Not Want Not

This is another garden constructed from recycled materials.

Professionally Designed Gardens:

The Rough with the Smooth - by Lizzie Tulip Garden Design

At the End of the Day - by Hibiscus Gardens and Landscapes

Wall Hole Art Garden - by Rapture Gallery

Modo Repose

< by PWP Landscapes >

The Green Room

< by Wood Landscapes >

Between a Rock and a Hard Place

< by Harewood House Trust >

Modern Courtyard

by Ward Associates Landscape Design

Gardening Societies:

National Primula & Auricula Society - Northern Division

Alloment Gardener's Federation - Leeds District

North of England Bonsai Society

Flower Show:

No Spring Show would be complete without the Daffodil Show and this one came up trumps again considering that the flowering season has been delayed with the recent cold weather and snow.

Normally I produce a slide show of single blooms as seen here at last years show, but this year thought I would give the suppliers of the bulbs some credit in my slide show so I have amalgamated my pictures.

Click on picture to engage slide show >>

Floral Art:

I have grown and exhibited flowers for many years but this Art never fails to amaze me!

The imagination and dexterity of the ladies and occasionally men, who, when they are given a brief title such as one given this year Top Hats then come up with so many different interpretations for the given title!

It's just mazing!!

What was also nice to see was how the Horticultural Colleges are training these young and not so young ladies thus ensuring that this art will continue for the forseeable future, unlike the flower and vegetable shows where the current exhibitors are sadly not being replaced with younger growers to ensure the continuation of this art!

The special feature this year was the fiftieth anniversary of The Beatles with interpretations of some of their biggest hits.

Well done ladies I got them all but one, as you will see in the slide show!


College Exhibits

A Great Day Out

Askham Bryan College

Bishop Burton College

East Durham College

Shipley College


These are various exhibits where I failed to record the title but are worthy of an entry in this blog.

Flowers for Fun

Five a Day

The Tree of Healthy Life

St Cuthbert's Church

An Apple a Day

Our Town-Driffield



The next section was entitled Music Maestro where the brief was; a bridal design to be held in the hand, and a cake top for a bride who is a musician.


This section was entitled - Weave a Magic Spell


This section was entitled - Children's TV programmes.

I am out of touch with children's TV programmes so I was unable to guess them all!

I got around 60% of them!

See if you can beat my score!


This section was entitled - Top Hats .

The brief for this category was - Design an arrangement for a new shop selling hats.

The class was open to students with less than two years experience.


The Beatles - John, George, Paul & Ringo

This section of the show was organised and constructed by the members of The Yorkshire Flower Club

Roll Over Beethoven

Ring's Drum Kit

Lady Madonna

Back in the USSR

Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club


I am the Walrus

Eleanor Rigby

Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds

Paperback Writer

Penny Lane

Norwegian Wood

All You need is Love

Yellow Submarine

Last but not least are the Trade Stands.

The places where you can buy and get information on all of those things that we hope will make us all better gardeners!

Click on picture to engage slide show:>>

....and that concludes my blog on The Harrogate Spring Show 2013

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