garden photography: Shrewsbury flower show

August’s theme is Open Gardens, or a Flower Show

(This can be a local flower show in your village or town, a national show like Chelsea, Hampton Court etc. or maybe even a small garden open for charity or to the public several times a year)

Fruit Basket Competition:


Annual fairs such as the Gooseberry and Carnation fairs, were introduced in the early eighteen hundreds. They were organised to attract country folk in to the town to sell their surplus produce, but often became scenes of debauchery and got out of hand. The Agricultural Society held its first show in 1875 with the band of the Coldstream Guards playing and the present Shropshire Horticultural Society was established in October the same year. Although flowers and horticulture are the main focus it has always been a family event with entertainment including military bands and show-jumping.


Usually taking place mid-August, the two-day event attracts a lot of visitors. The 2016 ticket was £24 for one of the days, not cheap, but there is a lot to see and do.


Several marquees are erected in the Quarry (park); the Quarry is for professional horticulturists; the Severn is where you’ll find vegetables, cut-flowers, bonsai, children’s classes, bee, honey and wine and the Dingle is home to floral arrangements.

Vegetable Basket Competition:

Vegetable Basket

There are also show gardens, school gardens, a craft marquee, farmers and artisans markets, trade stands and food stalls. Celebrity chefs, professional gardeners (this year it was Sarah Raven), bands and other entertainers are present. The show is open for 12 hours each day and ends with a magnificent fireworks display.

As well as admiring all the wonderful exhibits you can also buy plants and other items at the show, they even have a crèche where you can leave them and pick up later. Interesting ideas for your own garden can be discovered so take a notebook and camera with you. Be warned. It gets very busy. We went several years ago on a beautiful summer day and the crowds were enormous. We actually sat and watched the show-jumping as we desperately needed a rest!

If you would like to join in with Garden Photography then please take a look at my Garden Photography Page. No complicated rules 🙂

  • Create your own post and title it August: Flower Show / Open Garden
  • Include a link to this page in your post so others can find it too
  • Add the tag “GardenChallenge” so everyone can find the posts easily in the WP Reader
  • Get your post in by the end of the month, as the new theme comes out on the first Sunday in September.
  • Please visit the sites in the comments to see what others are posting.

This is the last week for the Open Garden / Flower show theme so if you have some photos to post then get them in quickly. Thank you to everyone who has participated this month, either by linking your own lovely posts, or through comments and likes. I do appreciate you stopping by. Next month is Flower Portrait where I’d like you to showcase one single bloom of your favourite or most unusual plant and please tell me why you are attracted to it. I will be travelling much of this month so may not get to visit your posts until the end of the month, but please don’t let that stop you from joining in. My posts will be scheduled and I shall do my best to keep in touch.


30 Comments Add yours

  1. restlessjo says:

    Debauchery? This is Sunday, woman! 🙂 🙂 Wonderfully creative and a superb post, Jude. I’m impressed.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I’m still trying to work that one out…

      1. restlessjo says:

        You started it! In your opening paragraph. I’m just having 5mins before I get back to making Sunday lunch. Wish I had a servant, or a cook xx

        1. Heyjude says:

          Make enough for one more, I’m on my way over. I never rarely make Sunday lunch, figure it is a whole lot easier to go to a pub!

        2. restlessjo says:

          Just sent Mick to Aldi for something I forgot this morning. After much hinting he came back with a plummy coloured Calla lily. Smiling xx

    2. Heyjude says:

      Ah, reference to the fruit basket in the apple shape? I did get a tad carried away with this one. Possibly the only ‘proper’ flower show I have visited.

  2. Tish Farrell says:

    A lovely piece of reportage, Jude. You did the Shrewsbury Flower Show proud. I’ve not been for years – but fond memories evoked here; reminded me that even as a pre-teen it was the splendiferous veggie displays that really excited me. Followed by the fireworks.

    1. Heyjude says:

      This was a few years ago Tish, we didn’t go whilst we were back in Ludlow, I think the crowds (and the price of the tickets) dissuaded us. If you do go use the Park ‘n Ride or bus/train.

  3. Dina says:

    Beautiful post, Jude. You’re an excellent ambassador for the Shrewsbury Flower Show! 🙂

  4. polianthus says:

    Great post, love the photos, almost as good as being there – happy travels Poli

  5. findingnyc says:

    This sounds like so much fun. Creativity and inspiration at every turn. Your photos turned out beautifully. I particularly liked the wire sculpture, and the fruits and vegetables looked so tempting.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Ah yes those fruit and vegetables baskets were so tempting, all in such perfect condition you really wanted to have a taste… 🙂

  6. What a wonderful and colourful event, Jude! I sometimes think I’ve missed out on such a lot, having left England when we did, all those decades ago. The English really know how to put on a show.

    1. Heyjude says:

      They do indeed Sylvia, though this is the only big show I have been to; I have visited local village fetes in past years. Next year maybe I will pluck up courage to attend the Cornwall Show – now that’s a big one!

      1. That should be amazing. When is it held?

        1. Heyjude says:

          Early June I think. We were down here, but still settling in. Our neighbour went – she makes RAW chocolate (dairy, gluten and sugar free). Nice but not for me. I prefer the real stuff with milk and cream and sugar…

        2. I doubt we’ll be over early enough for the show. I agree with you about the chocolate. It should be sinful, or where’s the fun? 🙂

  7. Emilio Pasquale says:

    I’m not a great fan of floral photography. One of my many shortcomings. But the veggies look great. And the bottled oils or wine, or whatever they are, look very enticing.

    1. Heyjude says:

      You need to visit my other blogs then Emilio – less of the floral stuff going on there! And yes, what’s not to love about wine and veggies 🙂

  8. Lucid Gypsy says:

    I love how you’ve framed the photos Jude, very creative. It seems I’ve failed this month, none of my photos tick the box. I promise to try harder next month. Have a lovely time travelling, and I think meeting our mutual friend x:-)x

    1. Heyjude says:

      Indeed Gilly – must confess to being a little bit nervous.

      1. Lucid Gypsy says:

        No need sweetheart, she’s the real deal 🙂

  9. Paula says:

    I enjoy the blooms as much as the next person, but that wire sculpture steals the show 😀

    1. Heyjude says:

      She is a delight 🙂

  10. I love all of your photos, but my favourite one must be the sweet peas – I love them and yet again was too late to grow them this year.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I didn’t start mine until late this year and then when I planted them out in June it was so cold that for a month they didn’t seem to grow an inch! However, in the last couple of weeks they have raced up the obelisk and now I am picking small bunches every couple of days for the house. Their smell is wonderful! Next year I shall start them off earlier, but I might also do some late ones too.

      1. Next year I will be more organised… I say that every year!

  11. Until I read this post I had no idea what a garden show really entailed – only that they were very expensive! Now I see it is sort of a combo garden, flower show, and farmer’s market with horses. I still think it’s really expensive and have offered a free tour of my tiny garden in exchange:

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