A flower show is not only a beautiful collection of specimens and designs, but a prime opportunity to capture the wonder and minds of the viewing public and club members. Flower shows stimulate interest in growing and showing horticulture, creating floral designs, and expressing creativity. It can be an invaluable way to educate and share knowledge of National Garden Clubs from local organizations to national goals and objectives. A flower show can be as simple as an intimate gathering or be a large celebration of horticulture. At any scale a flower show brings community members together to learn, grow, and display.
THE HORTICULTURE DIVISION
One of the two most important divisions of a flower show, the Horticulture Division gives us the opportunity to see plants at their best. Excellence in exhibiting standards, clean unblemished specimens, and variety of genus, species, and cultivars, give the gardener inspiration to find new ideas for growing plants they may not have considered before. The Horticulture division gives a chance for local growers to showcase their work and connect with other gardeners to share knowledge and expertise in gardening skills.
In a standard flower show there must be a minimum of 5 horticulture classes and a total of 20 exhibits total with no minimum number of exhibits per class. Classes are chosen based on seasonal availability and interests of club members. Exhibits can range from cut specimens of flowers, foliage of plants or trees to container grown exhibits grown indoors or out. Exhibits are judged using scales of points listed in the Handbook.
THE DESIGN DIVISION
This division is a creativity showcase where those who love to design and arrange flowers can show off their style. The show’s theme along with class titles, inspire the exhibitors to interpret the show theme. The schedule state the type of staging which will be used and can be tables, pedestals, frames, floor area, and many other possibilities based on the skills and experience of club members. Designs may be traditional or creative or reflect a certain style. The schedule may require specific plant material or specific sizes. Functional table designs as well as exhibition tables may be included. The Handbook suggests a variety of designs styles and types with descriptions for all that may be used in a show.
Small standard shows require 3 classes with a minimum of 4 exhibits in each class. A standard show requires 5 classes with a minimum of 4 exhibits. Exhibits are judged using the principals and elements of design.
One of the best ways to educate the public is with an informative educational display. The topics can be of local or national concerns or may address environmental issues. They may relate to the theme of the show or be instructive. To be eligible for an award, at least two exhibits are necessary. They may be created by one or more exhibitors and may include handouts if appropriate.
YOUTH AND SPONSORED GROUPS DIVISION
A great way to teach children about the joys of growing and showing plants is to include them in a flower show. This division was created for garden club youth groups and adult groups that are given leadership, programs, workshops or financial assistance by garden clubs. Youth exhibits do not compete with adults in the show and are divided into categories by age groups stated in schedule. Youth must be 18 years old or younger to compete. Youth and Sponsored Groups may compete in Horticulture, Design, Education and Botanical Arts within this division.
BOTANICAL ARTS DIVISON
Public interests extend beyond the Horticulture and Design arears of the show. This division my include popular like crafts, collage, fairy gardens, dried flowers, wearable art and photography. It brings together more of the member who can show off their talents in different ways and brings interest to the show.