Posts Tagged ‘growing competition’

Halloween Finale for Staff Competitions at Mr Fothergill’s

October 31st, 2018 | News | 0 Comments

Each year the trials team at Mr Fothergill’s organise fun growing competitions for the staff to have go at.

This year volunteers could grow the tallest sunflower or the heaviest pumpkin. The ones with artistic flair could grab any pumpkin from the field and carve it for Halloween display.

The tallest Sunflower reached 3.06m high and was grown by Lisa from the IT department. She not only watered them every day, but also gave them names, talked to them and sung from time to time.

Lisa commented: “I enjoyed the competition and looking after my sunflowers. Everyday watering with the addition of Seasol every two weeks did the trick. Moreover, when you talk, you release carbon dioxide which plants use to produce food, therefore helping them to grow. I also believe that all living things are somehow connected, so just like animals and people, they need to feel a sense they are loved. I spent 5 mins every evening after work telling them about my day! Now, when it all finished and they died I really miss my three plants I used to talk to.”

12 people took the challenge to grow the heaviest pumpkin. Rachel from our trials team won the competition with a pumpkin weight of 24.3kg. Production director Jeremy gained 2nd place with a 19.5kg fruit and mail order manager Paul was just behind him with 18.7kg.

Rachel said: “It was an amazing summer and pumpkins are very thirsty. I fed the pumpkin only a couple of times with Seasol, I watered every other day in the height of the summer, a whole watering can full at a time as I felt it needed it. It was only when it got a little cooler that the pumpkin got bigger, it ripened well and I did not realise how heavy it was until I tried to lift it!”

At Mr Fothergill’s the growing season ended with the pumpkin harvest and carving competition this year. Eight judges scored six amazing entries. Gladys the Witch created by Carol, Lindsay and Hannah was the judges’ favourite, followed by an eye ball carved with attention to detail by Suzi. Joint 3rd place went to Colin’s Polar Bear Mafia and Jeremy’s Little Boo. All participating employees put much effort and creativity to create a stunning Halloween display.

Gladys-the-witch-stole-1st-place-of-Mr-Fothergills-pumpkin-carving-competition

Congrats-to-Suzi-on-2nd-prize-of-Mr-Fothergills-pumpkin-carving-competition-with-eerie-eye-ballWell-done-to-Colin-for-joint-3rd-place-with-Polar-Bear-Mafia-creation

SWell-done-to-Jeremy-for-joint-3rd-place-with-Little-Boounflower Giant Single costs £1.40 for 75 seeds, Pumpkin Atlantic Giant priced £3.05 for 10 seeds.

Mr Fothergill’s has a wide range of pumpkins and squashes that will look great on Autumn displays, many of them having amazing flavours when cooked. They are available from Mr Fothergill’s retail stockists throughout the UK, from our latest Seed Catalogue or online. Visit your local garden centre for the full range or head over to www.mr-fothergills.co.uk.

And The Winner of Mr Fothergill’s Longest Runner Bean Competition Is…

October 23rd, 2018 | News | 0 Comments

Congratulations go to June Saddington who has grown the winning pod – measuring an impressive 62.3cm! Alison Cartwright gained 2nd place with a 61cm long bean and David Graney gained 3rd place with a pod of 53cm.

In April 2018, we announced our quest to find the longest runner bean in the UK. Mr Fothergill’s Facebook and Twitter followers were asked to share pictures of their runner beans growing, where they could get spot prizes every month. To have a chance to win the main prizes they were asked for images of the longest beans with a tape measure showing the length.

It all started with Mr Fothergill’s staff competition for the ‘Year of the Bean’ and the introduction of new and exclusive Runner Bean Guinness Record in 2017. There was great interest when the competition was announced. The winning bean that year was 47.2 cm long.

This year’s winners come from around the UK and used various ways to succeed.

The-winner-of-Mr-Fothergills-Longest-Runner-Bean-Competition-2018

 

 

June Saddington said: ‘‘I grew the plants in a raised bed in my back garden veg patch, a bag of manure was dug in first then I grew 5 plants, one up each pole of a wigwam, and just watered lots over the hot summer.’’

 

 

 

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Alison Cartwright applied a different approach: ‘‘My beans were surface sown in a seed tray of compost and then transplanted to one of my raised beds at the four-leaf stage. They were planted just as the hot summer weather started so this meant that watering every other day was necessary and on every third or fourth watering they were given a low nitrogen feed, they were also misted regularly to encourage the beans to set.’’

 

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David Graney, who won 3rd prize, commented: ‘‘I prepped the bed with well-rotted manure, then fed with comfrey tea and also mulched with comfrey leaves when we had the heatwave.’’

 

 

 

Well done to all the winners!

Runner Bean Guinness Record costs £3.55 for 45 seeds.

Mr Fothergill’s has a wide range of Runner Beans. They are available from Mr Fothergill’s retail stockists throughout the UK and from the company’s latest Seed Catalogue or online. Visit your local garden centre for the full range or head over to www.mr-fothergills.co.uk.

Big Money Prizes on offer again with Mr Fothergill’s Sweet Pea Competition

September 22nd, 2014 | Competitions, The flower garden | 0 Comments

Six winning vases of sweet peas will together be worth £2500 to the six growers who win a national sweet pea competition in July 2015.

Sweet peas awaiting judging in the 2014 sweet pea competition

Mr Fothergill’s has announced it will once again be running its sweet pea growing competition, with £2500 in prize money, for a third successive year.  The event, to be held on Saturday 18 July,  and aimed at ‘ordinary’ gardeners rather than at exhibitors, will once again be hosted by Capel Manor College in north London.  It was decided to move the date back a fortnight to ensure a greater number of potential entrants have plenty of blooms from which to choose.

Entrants may either post their blooms in a two-litre soft drinks bottle or turn up at the college on the day of the show to stage their flowers.  The two categories will be judged separately and there are also categories for schools and individual youngsters.  Each of the two adult and school classes will carry prizes of £500, while the youngsters’ classes will have two prizes each of £250.  Mr Fothergill’s have developed a tried and trusted method of packing and mailing sweet peas through the post, allowing postal entries to arrive in good condition.

Mr Fothergill’s competition coordinator Pim Dickson said he hoped that by making the competition two weeks later than in earlier years, everyone’s sweet peas would be in full bloom.  “We are looking for attractive bunches of mixed sweet peas, which will be judged on their overall appeal.  No one should feel their blooms are not good enough to enter and, after all, it is only a bit of fun,” he explained.  “The competition is becoming increasingly popular with schools, and we hope this trend continues.”

You can request a copy of the Mr Fothergill’s Seed Catalogue 2015 online, which features an extensive range of sweet peas suitable for October sowing, or you can make a catalogue request by calling 0845 371 0518 or by writing to Mr Fothergill’s, Gazeley Road, Kentford, Suffolk CB8 7QB.   Alternatively, you can take a look at the sweet peas on offer online at www.mr-fothergills.co.uk.

Make a New Year’s resolution: Grow and win with Sweet Peas

January 10th, 2014 | Competitions, Events, News, The flower garden | 0 Comments

Sweet Pea Old Spice MixedGardeners can make the best and most easily kept New Year’s resolution by sowing sweet pea seed in January for both the satisfaction of producing armfuls of cut flowers and the chance to win a large cash prize in Mr Fothergill’s national sweet pea growing competition.  The Suffolk seedsman has put £3500 up for grabs at its event to be held at Capel Manor College, Enfield, on Saturday 5 July 2014.

“Sweet pea seed can be sown in small pots of compost and placed in the greenhouse or on the kitchen windowsill any time during January or February”, says the company’s John Fothergill.  “The seedlings grow away well as the days lengthen to provide stocky young plants for setting out to their flowering positions in March or April”.

Several of Mr Fothergill’s recent and exclusive sweet pea introductions, such as Sir Henry Cecil, Chelsea Centenary and Pandemonium, have been bred in New Zealand by the renowned Dr Keith Hammett.  Such is his reputation that Mr Fothergill’s now puts a special flash on all its sweet pea variety packets bred by him to highlight the fact..  “We are delighted to be forging links with the world’s foremost sweet pea breeder”, comments John.

Sweet Pea Hammett CollectionThe competition is aimed at ‘ordinary’ gardeners rather than sweet pea exhibitors, and John is offering a collection of seed of six Hammett-bred varieties for just £8.95 – saving over £3 on the normal catalogue prices, to encourage as many people as possible to grow sweet peas this year (2014).  Collection includes: ‘Sir Henry Cecil’ (chocolate flaked), ‘Hi Scent’ (cream/mauve picotee), ‘Chelsea Centenary’ (pale lavender), ‘Pandemonium’ (frilly pink flake flowers), ‘Blue Shift’ (purple-blue) and ‘Almost Black’ (rich, dark colouring). Simply visit the main website to order our Sweet Pea Hammett Collection.

As the competition approaches, entrants may either post their blooms in a two-litre soft drinks bottle or turn up at the college on the day of the show to stage their flowers.  The two categories will be judged separately and there are also categories for individual youngsters and for schools.  Each of the four classes will carry a prize of £500.

Sending Postal Entries

The company has devised a method of allowing postal entries to arrive in good condition.   Follow the instructions for how to do this in the competition rules page.   All entries received this way last year arrived in good condition for judging.

 

The new Mr Fothergill’s catalogue features an extensive range of sweet pea seeds, which you can also browse online.   Request a copy of Mr Fothergill’s Seed, Plant and Bulb Catalogue 2014 online now or you can telephone 0845 371 0518 or write to Mr Fothergill’s, Gazeley Road, Kentford, Suffolk CB8 7QB for a copy.