It was great to watching people enjoy new flower colours and styles at the Wanganui Horticultural Society's Summer Show on Saturday, organiser Wayne Hughes says.

"People were quite amazed with the colours that were there. I think the public enjoyed it."

Winning most of the gladioli categories and showing the champion gladiolus, Rosey Glow, was just a bonus for Mr Hughes.

The big plant breeding competitions of the past were gone, he said, and shows these days were more about display than competition.


The other thing that stood out for him about the show in the Whanganui Intermediate School Hall was the way the flowers stood up to the heat. It was 30C outdoors at mid afternoon, and only a few had started to wilt by the end of the day.

Gladioli and dahlias are the main feature of the show. But it also has categories for lilies, other flowers, fruit, vegetables and pot plants.

The champion dahlia award went to Palmerston North's Brian McKenzie, for his Mary Jomanda. The lily class was taken out by Normanby's Joy Brogden, and her husband Spud Brogden showed the best white gladiolus.

Mr Brogden has been breeding gladioli for about 60 years, and started going to flower shows with his father, Bill Brogden, who was also a breeder, as a teenager.

"He's also a daffodil grower and breeder and he's showing all around the country," Mr Hughes said.

Whanganui's Jan Jenkins came tops in points for house plants and garden flowers, and Feilding's Dennis Rodgers had the best vegetables.

Newish Whanganui grower Diana Loader showed the most dahlias, and got the most points in the open section. She also grows chrysanthemums, daffodils and gladioli.

Exhibitors were from Whanganui, Palmerston North, Normanby and Feilding.