The Plot

The Plot

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Scottish Branch Championship Dunfermline 2014

Well at the start of the year my goal was to exhibit at the NVS Scottish Branch Championships at Dunfermline with the hope of gaining a "Red" ticket. I did succeed in benching two exhibits this year, but unfortunately did not succeed in gaining a first.  There were some great exhibits at the show and two other fellow members of our North of Scotland District Association were also exhibiting.  Steve Halifax had a number of exhibits down and gained a good third in the blanched leek class where the best exhibit in show came from.  Steve also gained a fourth in the collections which again was a strong section.  Graham Taylor from Ardersier was down for his first Branch Championship where he had an excellent show, gaining two thirds and a fourth.  Graham had a very well deserved 3rd in the under 250 gms onion class and a forth in the strong blanched leek class.  He also gained a third in the 1,1,1 veg class for exhibitors who have never won a red ticket at a NVS show.
 
   
 
Below is my second prize entry in the 1,1,1 class.  Sweet candle, Morning Star, Show Perfection.
 
 The Branch Championships was held in conjunction with Fife Flower Show so here is a photo showing the fantastic display of flowers.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Dufftown 2014 Show Results

This last weekend was the two day show at Dufftown.  It is a well supported show and attracts exhibitors from Banffshire and Morayshire.  Considering the monsoon like weather this area suffered for nearly 3 weeks in August there were a good turn out of exhibits. In the Veg section Sandy Robertson from Rothienorman was the main winner with his collection and large onions also winning the NVS medal for best exhibit. Iain Lumsden of Huntly secured the Arthur Rugg trophy which was for Onions from set this year with an exceptional dish of Setton onions. I was fortunate enough to secure the trophy for most points in the veg section and retain the trophy for the potato collection with 7 firsts 3 seconds and 2 thirds  from my 12  entries.   This is a very friendly but competetive show and it was great to spend an enjoyable Sunday speaking to like minded growers.  I was also able to encourage a number of exhibitors to consider coming up to Inverness on the 18th of October to the North Of Scotland NVS DA meeting. Where one of the top growers in Scotland Mr Alister Gray will be giving a talk on Blanched Leeks.  This takes place at the Cheiftain Hotel Inverness on 18th October at 2.00 pm all interested welcome.  
 
 
 
 Above is my dish of coloured and white potatos, Bonnie and Harmony.  I have been fortunate to win this class for the last 3 years.
 Above is my potato collection, they were slightly on the small side but lovely and clean.
 This is the collection boards with Sandy Robertson's winning board in the center, Bert Marshall's board to the left and my own 3rd placed board to the right. 
 The leeks boards with Sandy's far right my own second prize one center and Dod Jamieson's one on the left
This shows Sandy's winning onions far right and my own smaller second placed ones center.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Lhanbryde show results 2014

Saturday 30th August brought Lhanbryde Flower Show.  Over the last 6 years this show has been a fairly happy hunting ground for me. I was fairly apprehensive this year as some of my produce was not up to scratch, in particular I had been having a problem with my stump carrots and my potatoes.  On Friday evening I pulled the carrot below from my last stump bed. These are Sweet Candle and were sown on 2/5/2014. I they are probably the best set I have ever pulled and I only pulled 4 to get these 3. They were 10.5 inches long and 7 inches round the crown. So this set me up nicely fro my collection as I also had 4 nice Maxine. The show went very well for me with a total of 11 firsts and 1 second out of 12 entries.  I also managed to win the trophy for "Onions from Set" and Won the best exhibit with my collection in the premier section. very happy with the result. Below are a selection of my entries.
 
 
 First with my tattie board, Maxine, Harmony, Blue Belle & Bute.
 First with my under 250 gms onions " Globo"
 First with "Show Perfection"
 First with my Collection
 First with onion from set " Hercules"
 The board with the "Premier Section" Trophy.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Nairn & District annual show

Saturday was Nairn show and there was a number of good entries forward. Below shows the four collections. I was fortunate enough to win this class with the board on the far right with the celery on it. 
 
Below is my Celery before mounting it on the board

This is two of my Parsnips I also got a first with Parsnips

 
They main winners were G Taylor  who won the the Croy Tankard for most pionts in the Onions,leeks and Shallot classes. Kate Fraser won best exhibit in show with 3 stump carrots.  Next show Lhanbryde this Saturday.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Black Isle Show 2014 Results

 Sorry for not up dating much this year but been flat out with work and not had a lot of time.  On Wednesday 7/8/14 was the black Isle show where we had a really good turn out of Veg exhibitors. I had 13 entries in gaining 3 Firsts, 3 Seconds and 3 Thirds. So well pleased. The over all best exhibit in the Fruit & Veg and in the whole Flower show was Steve Halifax with his Leeks. These were a lovely matched pair measuring 10.75 inch i girth and 19.5 inches to the button.

Steve's Winning Leeks 
 My first prize beetroot "Pablo"
 My second prize white potatoes "Harmony"
 My third prize collection. Pacific Parsnip, Carmen Cucumber, Kelsae Onions, Sweet Candle Carrots, Maxine Potatoes. 
 My second prize collection of potatoes. Kestrel,Amour,Harmony,Maxine. Was really pleased with this as there were 6 collections in. 
My first prize salad box

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

I managed to get my Parsnips in during the week. So that's me got Pacific in, and hopefully get Panarama in this week. Here is photos of the two batches of Leeks I've got going. The ones on the left are Pendle Improved, I got them up from my good friend Neil Muirhead after the NVS Scottish Branch AGM last week. I've got 7 inch collars on them and will pot on this week. The ones on the right are off my own head and I believe are Welsh Seedling. I have no colars on them as I've been told not to draw them too early. They are averaging about 5.5 inch to buttom and about 2.5 in girth. I will pot them on this week and hopefully they will continue growing on.   


Here is a selection of my 250 gm onions that I got up from Niall Currie. They are growing on strongly and again will be potted on into a M3 mix in the coming week.  

I hope to start some stump carrots away this week in an attempt to get them ready for the Black Isle on 6th of August.  I've got Sweet Candle and Match so hopefully 20 weeks will suffice.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Leeks & Onions

Hi folks sorry for the lack of posts but been busy with work and trying to play rugby, (thats another story). Any way I've got some of my Parsnips sown.  This year I've got Pacific in and hope to get my Panarama in at the weekend.  After listeninmg to a talk by Uan Stocks NVS Scottish Branch Chairman I changed how I make my stations. I now just use a Pinch bar and bore the hole with out removing and of the material from my box.  I must say it was quicker and I did not use as much compost mix when filling the station as they are now naturally conical shaped.
 
 
So above and below are pictures of my Kelsea onions. They are in one ltr pots and to my eye growing on quite strongly.  They are now in M3  compost with Perlite to keep it open and free draining. They get a spray of SB invigorator once a week. In addition to thier normal water requirements once a week they are watered with a Maxicrop solution.  This works out that 2 in 5 waterings over a 14 day period are with the Maxicrop solution. As you can see from the picture below they are thicker than my pinkie but not as thick as my fore finger.  They chamber they are in is getting lights from 6.00am to 8.00 pm. and hopefully not dropping much below 12 degrees through the night. 

 
Below is my leeks, they are in 2 ltr pots and on average are about 2. inch in diameter and about 5.5 inch to the buttom.  They will be potted on this week into 3 ltr pots and I will reselect with the the ones not choosen for show going to a local school.  They will be kept going in the green house without any further additional heat or light.  The Leeks are also on 14 hrs of light and get sprayed once a week with SB invigorator.