GREENVILLE — The Darke County Association of Garden Clubs presented Garden Highlights at the 163rd Great Darke County Fair on Sunday. It featured three presentations to help those who may be interested in entering the horticulture show in the future. The presentations included a how-to on design, tips on exhibits, and edible animal displays.
Kim Cromwell provided tips, tricks, and hints for horticulture exhibits. She has been the Great Darke County Fair Flower Show Chairperson for the last 20 years. It is something of a family affair covering four generations with her mother, Charlene Thornhill, the Darke County Association of Garden Clubs President and also the Butterflies Junior Garden Club leader.
Cromwell is currently working on becoming an accredited flower judge and her first tip for flower shows is to read the schedule and supplement thoroughly.
“So you know what comes on what days,” explained Cromwell, along with knowing, “the requirements for each one as far as particular varieties.”
Cromwell provided examples of requirements on several different varieties, including sunflowers, hostas, and grasses. For example, sunflowers can be no more than seven inches in diameter. Sunflowers are measured from petal to petal to make certain it is within requirements for the class.
For hostas, which the flower show had over 300 entries this year, must be free of holes, tears, brown spots, and insect damage.
Small hostas may be placed in a water pick with the latter placed into a vase for presentation.
Cromwell recommended gently cleaning off cobwebs and stems but to not rub off the natural sheen found on some varieties of hostas. Other presentations, such as potted plants must also be free of dirt and mildew.
Other tips included flowers facing to the front with the entry tag, the latter hanging from the lip of the vase.
“So when the judge is coming through they do not have to turn the head,” said Cromwell. Flowers may be secured with a wedge made from paper towels, cotton balls, or an Oasis, items that are soft and will not damage the stem.
Some varieties require disbudding, removing side-shoots from the main stem of the specimen, leaving two sets of full leaves but no leaves below the waterline.
Grasses must be less than 36” measured from the top of the seed head with three stems as part of one presentation.
These are only a few tips and tricks Cromwell provided during the presentation. Those interested in flowers, gardening, and horticulture shows are encouraged to join one of the three clubs in the county. Those clubs are the Wildflower Garden Club, Ladybug Garden Club, and the Butterflies Junior Flower Club which is currently celebrating 35 years. All three clubs are part of the Darke County Association of Garden Clubs.
Be sure to check out the large variety of floral displays and designs in the basement of the coliseum during the Great Darke County Fair.
See the next edition of the Daily Advocate for more coverage of the Garden Highlights presentation by the Darke County Association of Garden Clubs.
Reach reporter Bethany J. Royer-DeLong at 937/548-3330 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more news, features, and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.