The beast from the east and blistering summer temperatures failed to faze growers in the world-famous giant vegetable competition at Harrogate autumn flower show today.
Thousands of visitors poured into the Great Yorkshire Showground for the first day of the show, and the giant vegetables proved to be a real head-turner. Up to 40,000 visitors and 1,000 exhibitors are expected to take part in the show across the three days, featuring displays from nearly 50 plant nurseries and over 5,000 autumn blooms in Britain’s biggest exhibition by specialist gardening societies. The 2018 show theme is Plants of Pleasure, exploring the origins of those plants often considered naughty but nice, and there is also a special bicentenary tribute to Humphry Repton, the man who coined the phrase landscape gardener. This year’s Best in Show for the plant nursery displays went to RV Roger of Pickering for their display of apples, and The Rose Society UK won Best in Show for educational and scientific exhibits. Judges awarded 19 Premier Golds, with 24 Gold Awards, 19 Silver Gilt, six Silver and one Bronze. The 2018 garden border competition saw three Gold medals awarded, plus two Silver Gilts and a Silver. Themes ranged from a campaigning entry by the Women’s Farm and Garden Association, to a gruesome gothic dinner gathering for carnivorous plants. The full garden border results are as follows: Class 1 – One Heaviest Onion 1st Nick Brake 7.755kg 2nd Stephen Purvis 6.885kg 3rd Peter Glazebrook 6.615kg Class 131 – One Heaviest Marrow 1st Kevin Fortey 72.2kg 2nd B Marshall 47.7kg 3rd Peter Glazebrook 46.5kg Class 132 – One Heaviest Cabbage 1st Ian Neale 30.2kg 2nd Kevin Fortey 26kg 3rd Chris Marriott 20.3kg Class 133 – One Heaviest Potato 1st H Oughton 2.192kg 2nd Peter Glazebrook 1.910kg 3rd D Unsworth 1.396kg Class 134 – One Heaviest Tomato 1st Peter Glazebrook 2.538kg 2nd C Marriott 2.151kg 3rd E Walker 2.126kg Class 135 – One Longest Runner Bean 1st Joe Atherton 33.5 inches 2nd Peter Glazebrook 33 inches 3rd B Marshall 29.5 inches Class 136 – One Longest Cucumber (Cucumis Sativus) 1st H Oughton 36.5 inches 2nd J Dale 34.5 inches 3rd Peter Glazebrook 30.5 inches Class 137 – One Heaviest Leek 1st Mark Shepherd 6.6kg 2nd A Kaye 6.3kg 3rd Stephen Purvis 6.2kg Class 138 – One Heaviest Beetroot 1st Ian Neale 19.315kg 2nd Chris Marriott 14.725kg 3rd Graham Barratt 11.46kg Class 139 – One Heaviest Stick of Rhubarb 1st A Wright 813.63g 2nd N Pattison 722.91g 3rd P Glazebrook 708.74g Class 140 – One Heaviest Pumpkin 1st Graham Barrat 319.8kg 2nd B Marshall 242.6kg 3rd Chris Marriott 187.1kg Class 141 – One Heaviest Carrot 1st Ian Neale 4.29kg 2nd Daniel Unsworth 3.36kg 3rd Kevin Fortey 3.2kg Class 142 – One Heaviest Parsnip 1st Peter Glazebrook 4.025kg 2nd Ian Neale 3.795kg 3rd Graham Barratt 3.735kg