The Birmingham Branch Autumn Show and Haworthia Society Annual Show – A Guest’s Perspective

We’re very grateful to Tony Roberts from Dartford Branch for his response to our show:

It was my first visit to this show and I certainly wasn’t disappointed! Birmingham Botanical Gardens is a splendid venue for this event, and the conference hall provides ample space for the exhibits and “trade stands”. There was a tremendous variety of plants to be seen in the 46 Cactus and Succulent classes and then a dazzling array of specialist plants in the 35 Haworthia classes. What a feast for the eyes! There were some show-winning plants I recognised from other events “down south” (must have been Stirling Baker’s fine entries!) but what was really nice was to see different plants grown by enthusiasts from parts of the country I don’t normally reach.

I also enjoyed browsing the sales tables of Plantlife, Toobees and the Edgingtons, not forgetting the Branch Sales stand too and those of Haworthia Society members. I almost resisted (keeping my hands firmly in my pockets!) but succumbed to a couple of super Adromischus and a Gasteria from the members’ sales tables. The highlight of the day though, apart from the plants, was meeting so many friends, old and new, and making contact with people I’d previously only conversed with by phone, e-mail or on the BCSS Forum.

Any regrets? Well, I spent too much time talking and at the Haworthia Society B.G.M. and not enough time looking at the plants, whilst exploration of the “Gardens and Glasshouses” will have to be reserved for another, perhaps sunnier, visit! Many thanks to all the Birmingham Branch and Haworthia Society officials and members and particularly the Exhibitors who made this such an enjoyable day. I look forward to next time!

Dr Tony Roberts, Chairman, BCSS Dartford Branch

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