Posts Tagged ‘winner’

Gold medal winners old and new

January 24th, 2020 | Plant Talk with Graham Rice | 0 Comments

Fleuroselect Gold Medal winners Lavatera 'Silver Cup' and Zinnia ‘Queeny Lime Orange’

Fleuroselect is the Europe-wide organisation that trials new annuals and gives awards to the very best. The idea is to highlight the finest new plants so that home gardeners can choose varieties we can depend on.

Trial grounds where the assessments are made are scattered all across Europe and, in the organisation’s fiftieth anniversary year, a new trials site has been added to the roster – the Mr F trials in Suffolk!

Every year new varieties are grown, unidentified, under code numbers – to eliminate any chance of bias – and voted on by experienced and knowledgeable growers. The very best performers are awarded a coveted Gold Medal.

Now you may wonder what relevance the results from trials sites in Italy or Russia have to us in Britain. Well, if a variety does well enough across Europe to be awarded a Gold Medal then it’s likely to do well in different situations here in Britain.

One of the best early winners was Lavatera ‘Silver Cup’, gaining its Gold Medal in 1979 and still going strong as is Alyssum ‘Snow Crystals’ (1989). The pick of recent Gold medal winners is last year’s Zinnia ‘Queeny Lime Orange’, an entirely new colour in zinnias. Mr F will soon be highlighting the Gold Medal winners in the print catalogue and online.

Of course, many older Gold Medal winners have also been superseded by newer introductions, development is rapid and competition to create improved varieties is intense. But even those winners from long ago are still good plants and worth growing.

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.

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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.