Local NGS Gardens to Visit

At a recent meeting, the committee discussed the National Garden Scheme.


Here are some Stockport gardens that look like they are worth a visit:


39 Osborne Street
This dahliaholic’s garden contains over 350 dahlias in 150+ varieties, mostly of exhibition standard. Shapely lawns are surrounded by deep flower beds that are crammed with dahlias of all shapes, sizes and colours, and complemented by climbers, soft perennials and bedding plants. An absolute riot of early autumn colour.


21 Scafell Close
⅓ acre landscaped suburban garden. Colour themed annuals border the lawn featuring the Kinder Ram statue in a heather garden, passing into vegetables, soft fruits and fruit trees. Returning perennial pathway leads to the fishpond and secret terraced garden with modern water feature and patio planting. Finally visit the blue front garden.


218 Marple Road
This secret south facing garden approx 1 acre, full of herbaceous plants, vegetable plot, plant growing area, topiary, unfenced ponds/water features, fun areas, developed from paddock to garden over 20yrs by current owners. We are trying to encourage children of all ages in this fun garden. There will be a quiz.

Free Cakes from House Bakery!

Emma from House Bakery has been in touch:

I’m writing from House bakery, a south Manchester based cake bakery.


Firstly I just wanted to give a bit of an intro to House bakery – we like to make cakes with fruit, flowers, herbs and spices, and cakes that are suited to a mixed palate – not everyone likes super sweet cakes ( myself included!) so this is always a focus when working on new recipes.


As an Altrincham-based business, it’s really important to us that we work with the local community and local suppliers because we love our area and the green spaces around us and so it makes total sense to us that we support each other. For example, we collaborated with a local brewery, Stubborn Mule, who donated some stout for a Manchester Beer Week special we made for Grub Food fair. The result, a chocolate, stout and ginger mini cake went down a storm!


My idea is to work with local growing communities to swap and share produce, i.e. a bag of strawberries for cake, or a bag of roses for a brownie! also a bit of cross promotion never hurt anybody!


If you’d like to find out about swapping produce for cakes you can email Emma at info@housebakery.co.uk or visit the website at www.housebakery.co.uk.

News from Manchester District Association of the National Vegetable Society

Meetings now take place on the 1st Tuesday of the month, 8pm at the Hough End Centre, Mauldeth Road West, Chorlton, Manchester, M21 7SX.  (Events are in the HAS Calendar)


We also have a dedicated website that can be found at: http://manchester-da.co.uk.   Here you will find details of future speakers and events planned by our DA.


Our next meeting on *Tuesday 3rd November 2015* will include a talk by *Adrian Reed on Growing Pot Leeks *and we would consider it our pleasure to welcome you at our meeting.


You do not have to be a member to attend meetings but if you do join members receive a quarterley magazine and other membership benefits that can be found on the NVS website: http://www.nvsuk.org.uk.


Plans are already in hand for us to continue our success at RHS Tatton Show this year in the Societies Tent and at the Manchester DA Show held at Poynton on the Saturday of the August Bank Holiday.


Thank you for taking the time to read this and we hope you will join us at some time in the future and bring with you ideas and suggestions for speakers at our meetings and moving the Manchester DA forward.

2017 Plot Competitions

Judging Criteria 2017


Individual Plot Competition


Individual plots will be judged using the following systems and guidelines:-


Cultivation & Cropping


The underlying philosophy which governs the marks is to encourage the plot holder to provide a source of fresh vegetables and fruit.


  • A varied range of produce
  • Seasonal produce (Summer, Autumn, Winter, Spring cropping)
  • Soft fruits (pruning and harvesting)
  • Herbs
  • Companion planting and flowers (not compulsory)
  • Successive planting
  • Quality of crops (clean, healthy crops, free from pests and disease)




  • Plot needs to be free from perennial and annual weeds
  • Free from rubbish
  • Neat and tidy compost bins and manure areas




  • Use of water butts and compost areas
  • No excessive use of chemicals and pesticides




  • Paths – neatly maintained, grass well cut and free of weeds and rubbish
  • Hardcore paths should be weed free without a neglected fringe
  • Hedges and fences, cut and well maintained
  • Buildings (sheds, greenhouses, polytunnels) – the quality and condition


Trafford Council Environmental Award

Trafford Allotments judging is from Thursday 6 July


Plots should be maintained to the same standard and criteria as the individual plots and have additional criteria and features:-


  • Non-use of chemicals and pesticides (organic slug pellets are not allowed)
  • Biodiversity – planting for the benefit of pollinating insects and bees and other wildlife
  • Bird boxes, ladybird and insect boxes, wormeries, ponds, hedgehog habitat, butterfly gardens (not compulsory but beneficial)
  • Use of water butts
  • Companion planting


Entry Form for Environmental Award 2017


Site Criteria For Best Site In Each Area

In addition to the allotment plot competition, allotment sites are judged on:-


  • Cleanliness of site
  • Communal areas well maintained
  • Communal compost/manure/woodchip areas well maintained
  • Well maintained plots
  • Well maintained fences and walls
  • Well maintained buildings
  • Neat and tidy pathways and drives
  • All plots numbered

Annual Show 2017 Entry Form and Rules

Hale Allotments Society 25th Annual Show will take place on 2 September 2017 at the Scout Hut, Lilac Road, Hale WA15 8BJ

If you are a member and would like to enter, please download an entry form and exhibitor’s copy.


Mike Hilton (show judge) talking to the Kewleys with Martin Howell looking on

Mike Hilton (show judge) talking to the Kewleys with Martin Howell looking on at the 2015 show



  1. Entries only on official form – to be submitted NO LATER than 9.00 p.m. Thursday before the show.
  2. One entry only in any class.
  3. No entries will be accepted on the day of the show.
  4. All produce must have been grown by the member on his/her own plot except classes 20-24 and 26-32 when grown at home. Young Gardeners Classes are exempt.
  5. With the exception of all flower classes and salad baskets all exhibits must be correctly named. If the exhibitor does not know the name of any cultivar the label should bear the words “Name Unknown”. The judge may regard the correctness and clearness of naming as telling in favour of an exhibit in a close competition.
  6. No bought produce allowed.
  7. Exhibits will be shown at the designated place.
  8. Exhibitors will be responsible for their own vases etc..
  9. The Society will not be responsible for any exhibit or for staging same.
  10. THE JUDGES DECISION IS FINAL Any objections must be in writing and handed to the Chairman/Chairlady who will investigate and report to the Committee who will then rule.


The show will be open for staging from 11.00 a.m.

All exhibits must be staged by 12.30 p.m. at the latest.
The show will be open for viewing from approximately 3.45 p.m.
Thank you for entering and good luck!

Theft of bushes and fruit

Regretfully I have received information that a plot holder has had one of their fruit bushes dug up and removed.

I have also been informed by several plot holders that other members have been seen ‘snacking’ on fruit as they wander from plot to plot without the permission of the plot holder.

Please be aware that this is NOT acceptable and could result in those responsible having their tenancy terminated.

Dobies Catalogue

We now have the new Dobies Catalogue and as usual members can take advantage of the 40% discount on seeds and 10% on Potatoes and other products.

Some of you may have received a catalogue directly from Dobies but please be aware that in order to benefit from the members discount you will need to contact me for the discount code for 2017.

If you have not received a catalogue you can collect one from the sales shed at Golf Road on Sundays as usual.

Pallets, Tidy-up and Bonfires

Further to requests from plot holder for pallets, Michael Woolley has arranged to have some delivered to the Golf site for around 9.15 a.m. Monday 17th October.

If anyone is available to assist with unloading and stacking of the pallets their assistance would be greatly appreciated!


This years events will take place on Saturday 5th November at Wellfield Lane

and Sunday 6th November on the GR / ML Sites. Times to be confirmed.

Tidy Ups:

Any assistance, on all sites, helping to clear up and generally get the bonfires ready would be also greatly appreciated.