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The Secretary's Page

Robert Bryce

4th. March 2017
SHOW JUDGES FOR 2017

Show and Area

Date and Venue all 2017

Judges Names

National Open Cut Bloom and Pot Classes

Friday 11th. & Saturday 12th. August
Quarry Park, Shrewsbury

Robert Nelson (SBS Judge) and Sandra Davies

National Species, Intermediate and Novice Classes

Friday 11th. & Saturday 12th. August
Quarry Park, Shrewsbury

Chris Davies and Robert Bryce

Yorkshire and Humberside

Saturday 29th July

Outwood Hall, Wakefield, Yorks

Robert Bryce

North West

Thursday 17th. - Sunday 20th. August

Southport Flower Show
Victoria Park, Southport

Jeff Rhodes and Ian Rhys Williams

South West

Sunday 21st. August
Bideford Show The Pannier Market, Bideford

Andrew Mc Dougall

North East and Scottish Borders

Sunday 27th. & Monday 28th. August

Dobbies Garden Centre
Street House Farm, Ponteland, Newcastle-upon-Tyne  NE20 9BT    

Phil Champion

South Wales

Sunday 27th & Monday 28th August
 Wyevale Garden Centre, Siemans Way, Enterprise Park, Llansamlet, Swansea. SA7 9FT

Terry Tasker

Dundee Flower Show

Friday 1st September to Saturday 2nd September Camperdown Country Park, Coupar Angus Road, Dundee DD2 4TF

Ian Donaldson, Barry Walker (NBS Judge), John Chiswell, Trainee Mike Richardson

 

FEBRUARY 14th. 2017
Obituary

I heard this morning that Margaret Owen wife of Derek had passed away peacefully yesterday. Derek has always been a keen member  of the NBS putting up wonderful displays with the late Ken Gallagher at Shrewsbury. They were winners of the best exhibit in the trade tent on more than one occasion. Margaret was always to be found on the stand promoting Derek and Begonias in general. I personally had known her for around 30 years and  found her to be a wonderful friendly person. 

She will be sorely missed by all that knew her. Please can all member remember Derek and support him where possible at this sad time. 

                   Bob Bryce NBS Secretary

 

FEBRUARY 2nd. 2017

Margret Owen
I had a phone call from Derek Owen last night to tell me that his wife Margaret is very ill.
Please can all members keep them in your thoughts and pray for them in this very sad time.

                   Robert Bryce Secretary

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DECEMBER 12th. 2016

To all our very valued members, all the very best for Christmas and the New Year and the soon to be following 2017 growing season. Watch out for Jack Frost he can ruin the best laid plans of mice and men.

Please ALL remember our free raffle and donate tubers for members less fortunate than yourselves. Let us know if you can donate early in January. The winning members really value the prizes that are other growers surplus!

                                Regards
                                Robert Bryce

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JULY 16th. 2016

Hi all members, 

My plants are progressing well but could do with more sunshine. At the moment my buds for Shrewsbury look colourful. Lots to look forward to. Do not forget to support our National show as well as our area shows and local shows. I hope to see some new champions this year! 

I currently have a plant of the new variety Moira Callum, see picture, in a 2.5 litre pot (7 inch). This has been donated to be raffled at Shrewsbury Flower Show, tickets will be 1 each. If any member is not attending the show they can buy tickets by contacting Bob Bryce NBS Secretary. Please note this is the best cut bloom new variety that I have grown in the last 10 years and it won best in show as a seedling at the National in 2014. The picture is of one grown by me last year that was 10 inch diameter. This variety cannot be bought anywhere. 

All the best to our exhibitors at all shows.

Regards
Robert Bryce

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JUNE 1st. 2016

It is the first day of June and I hope all of you have some beautiful plants coming along. The sunny and warm weather in Blackburn finally arrived over the last week. My plants grew more in the last 7 days than the preceding 2 months. Everything is in final pots and next week I will be sorting out the plants that will be grown for the shows. Please do not over feed your begonias at this stage as by the time you come to flower them the macro system will be locked and the resulting flower will be small.
 

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APRIL 17th. 2016

It is now the middle of April and we are looking for copy for the Summer Bulletin as we have 40 pages to fill. It is obvious that members look forward to receiving all this news and information but without members providing their experiences, worries and concerns we cannot possibly carry on filling it. Please can all members please take part and provide letters, emails or photo's then it will truly be a bulletin by the members for the members. How about you do not leave it to others.

My growing so far this year has provided me with a warm feeling. I am finally making progress after some years lagging behind. I have spent the last 5 years trying to remember what I did before I fell ill between 2009 to 2012. I used to be able to grow much better begonias! My losses this year have been minimal and about half my tubers are in their first pot. Singletons JI No 2 is the compost. This week the weather has turned colder with only 2 forecast for tonight. I have stopped potting up as I have no heating in the big greenhouse. A good number of my cutting tubers are now in 6 inch pots.

My seedlings are progressing nicely and are now about 2.5 inch across and my next move will be into 4 inch pots. This means that I will have lots of new varieties to look at later in the year hopefully with a small number making the grade. I only keep the best, selection is a key skill. I look for form mainly, then colour and then is it different than those currently grown.

Please make sure you have an additive for vine weevil in your compost as the mild weather will mean that they will be laying eggs much earlier. I believe Intercept is the new thing for ensuring you have no problems. Please also note that Bio Systhane has been taken off the market and this used to stop Mildew. I am not sure what will replace it but if you see any old stock buy it. Hope to see all the members exhibits at the NBS Shows later in the year. Please all show us your wares and beat all last years champions. Remember that showing helps make life long friendships it is a pleasurable experience certainly not daunting. If you need help, advise or support please contact me.

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FEBRUARY 20th. 2016

JUDGES FOR 2016 SHOWS

Show and Area

Date and Venue all 2016

Judges Names

National Open Cut Bloom and Pot Classes

Friday 12th. & Saturday 13th. August
Quarry Park, Shrewsbury

Robert Nelson and Chris Davies

National Species, Intermediate and Novice Classes

Friday 12th. & Saturday 13th. August
Quarry Park, Shrewsbury

Sandra Davies and Robert Bryce

Yorkshire and Humberside

Saturday 30th July

Outwood Hall, Wakefield, Yorks

Barry Walker

East Anglia

Saturday 13th. & Sunday 14th. August
Baytree Nurseries,  Weston,  Spalding,  Lincs

Andrew Mc Dougall

North West

Thursday 18th. - Sunday 21st. August

Southport Flower Show
Victoria Park, Southport

Jeff Rhodes and Ian Rhys Williams

South Coast

Sunday 21st. August 

Crookhorn College of Technology, Purbrook 

Chris and Sandra Davies

South West

Sunday 21st. August
Bideford Show The Pannier Market, Bideford

Phil Champion

North East and Scottish Borders

Sunday 28th. & Monday 29th. August
Dobbies Garden Centre

Street House Farm, Ponteland, Newcastle-upon-Tyne  NE20 9BT    

Robert Bryce

South Wales

Sunday 28th & Monday 29th August
 Wyevale Garden Centre, Siemans Way, Enterprise Park, Llansamlet, Swansea. SA7 9FT

Dave Coates and Terry Tasker

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FEBRUARY 14th. 2016

 FREE RAFFLE PRIZE WINNERS & PRIZES

January 25th. 2016
Hi All
We are going to draw the annual free tuber raffle on 9th February 2016. Only members that have renewed their subs or new members before that date will be included in the raffle. Please note that there are over 80 tubers in the raffle with some of the new rare varieties. These have been kindly donated by the members for the members! This is democracy demonstrated. Thank you to all the generous people especially Norman Burgess and Tony Shepherdson. As secretary I am delighted that we are spreading goodwill and everyone has an even chance to win the newest and latest with the odds just 10-1. Any member winning a prize should be very happy as this would be like getting a free membership. If any other members wish to take part and donate please do not hesitate to contact me. Good Luck all!!

Raffle Prizes & Donators

Regards
Robert Bryce

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January 11th. 2016
Hi all and Happy New Year for 2016!

I hope you have all enjoyed the festive season as much as me and are now preparing for the new begonia season. Over the last week I have been taking all my cutting tubers out of the pots, de-scabbing them and healing them with cosmetic yellow sulphur aka Mike Richardson. I have been to a supplier in Bolton and bought 7 bags of Clover Professional potting compost. The compost has been mixed with coarse perlite and put in trays in a heated propagator. The cutting tubers are now in with the propagator set at 70 deg F. This was done because frost is forecast this week. All my adult tubers are safely stored frost free.

The tuber raffle will be drawn in the first week of February. I have taken a number generous donations but we still have room for more. Please contact me before the end of January if anyone has tubers to spare as I am sure some lucky members will enjoy winning them. Please be generous and spread goodwill.

I hope to see you all at the AGM or at the shows. Please beware of Jack Frost he can ruin a lot of plans!! Good luck to all exhibitors this year. Please stretch all previous champions. They can all be easily beaten!!

The South Coast Show will take place this year at Purbrook, this has been
negotiated with the NBS committee and Purbrook Horticultural Commitee. In the absence of an Area Rep and venue we had exhibitors that still wanted to show. In order to achieve this we approached Purbrook and agreed the South Coast Area Show would form part of their show.

Regards

Robert Bryce

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June 16th.
Hi all,
   I have now completed my second propagator and hence my smaller greenhouse has been completely stripped out and refurbished. I have over 200 cuttings potted up in 5 inch square pots with a further 150 cuttings rooted in the propagator. Hopefully this will help replace my losses.

   The adult plants are now motoring and I believe that I am less than 5 days behind my competitors. I am becoming happier each day as I catch up. Up until now my plants have had one feed with Chempak 2 at full strength and last week one feed of Calcium Nitrate at 1 teaspoon to 1.5 gallons of water. All my baskets outside are planted full of named multiflora and basket begonias. New ones this year are Million Kisses Blissfull and Embrace. I also have small plants of all three of the Buttons Series, Goldfinch, Orange Drops and Linda. I was lucky to acquire them. My collection is increasing.

   The next stage is to stake and tie my adult plants and put the surplus plants (30% plus) outside. Lastly they will spaced out at 3ft centres. From now until the first buds are taken (49 days to Shrewsbury) I will be feeding with Chempak 4 at full strength.

   Hope this helps you all and I look forward to seeing your exhibits on show. Please challenge our Pot Plant, Species and Cut Bloom Champions they definitely need the competition. Our Novice and Intermediate classes always need more support, if you need a start why not give it a go the prize monies are generous. Please all do your best. If you need advise please give me a call.

Regards
                                 Robert Bryce

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MAY 26th. 2015
  
Hi all, my apologies for not putting anything in last month. I was full of compost problems which resulted in my losing around 100 tubers. This was as a result of using peat stored outside in the sunshine for several years. i was always of the opinion that peat was inert but apparently not! My root systems had not developed so I was forced to re-pot everything I had left and with the very cold weather problems persisted. My plants are only now starting to develop as I would expect. Although I am not a happy bunny I have managed to root and pot up around 150 cuttings as an insurance for next year. I have at least one of every variety so it was not a total disaster.

I have also built a new propagator 14.5ft x 32" and my cutting are on the bed. I am currently potting on my adult plants and the next job is to build a second propagator. This re-organisation comes after 28 years where almost everything in my greenhouses had been neglected. I am planning for my later years cutting down and making things easier. I have been spraying my plants most nights with maxicrop diluted to stimulate plant growth.

I was way behind our top growers a month ago but I am catching up fast and hope to exhibit some cut blooms at our National Show. It should be easy for them to beat me again!I hope you are all trying to support our area reps at the local shows. I look forward to meeting you all around and about in 2015 please make yourselves known. Till next time?

For anyone needing soil warming cables VERY are selling 80 ft ones for 25
                                                                                                                                          Robert Bryce

MARCH 18th.
  
Hi all, the weather in Lancashire has been cold and my propagator heating cables have been working overtime. I have lost a smattering of tubers in the propagators both adult and cutting tubers. Almost all of my tubers are now sprouting under the compost and many are showing above. The cutting tubers are around 50mm above the compost with compost around them being replaced by a new mixing this week. I have not sown any of my begonia seed this year as I have a number of small seedling tubers that I want to look at again. I am in the process of ordering the ingredients of my potting compost. I will be using a JI No2 as usual for potting on. At this time it is important not to pot up any plants from the propagator unless you can provide a good air temperature (around 15
C) as the plants will collapse when cold. I expect to be taking the small Ian Donaldson type cuttings in around two weeks time when I will update the page. Hope all your troubles are small ones.

 

FEBRUARY 14th.
   Hi all members I hope the sap is rising ready for spring. My cutting tubers are showing signs of life having been in the propagator for some 3 weeks. I thought things were going well until I found that a field mouse was living in my propagator using my cutting tubers as a food source. I kept noticing small tubers lifted out the trays and on moving the trays the critter was nesting warm and happy. I did not catch it but hope it does not come back.
   My adult tubers were removed from under the roof last week and have been hot water treated. They went in the propagator yesterday set at 80
F. My starting compost was my own mix 3 parts peat, 1 part coarse sand with carbonate of lime (3 gram for each litre of bulk) and Vitax Q4 TEV fertiliser (4.5 gram for each litre of bulk) added. My losses were average but as usual I lost some that I wanted to keep.
   Look forward to meeting you all out and about in 2015. Please remember to help other members in the NBS as we are all having difficulties and friendship and companionship costs nothing. 

DECEMBER 
  
Hi all members I hope you are all looking forward to Christmas and the NY like me. However remember to look after your tubers and cuttings as they are not forgiving during the festivities. All my adult tubers are out of pots, scabs removed, cleaned up and in storage. It is very important to remove the scab of last years growing stem and to ensure the tissue is clean below. I cleaned my tubers by gently brushing the die back of roots and attached compost over a three week period (a bit at a time).
   The tubers, over a 100 off, are stored in boxes in my frost free loft (cool) with all boxes open allowing air circulation. They will be checked weekly.  My cuttings are still on the heated beds (set at 40 F).

Most of the stems have died back and have been removed. They will stay in their pots until I start them again in February. Hope this helps some members. Please keep Jack frost away or you will be disappointed!

I will write again in January.


Scottish Pot Plant Championion
2014.


Best Cut bloom
National Show 2014.
Seedling


Best Pot
National Show 2014.
Sweet Dreams


Trophies for Best Pot and Cut Bloom
National Show 2014.


6 Cut-blooms  1st.
Southport Show 2007


6 Cut-blooms  1st.
Southport Show 2002


National Begonia Champion  2001


12 Cut blooms  1st.
Southport Show 2013


British Begonia Champion
Scottish Begonia Society
Ayr  2003


British Begonia Champion
Scottish Begonia Society
Ayr  2006


British Champion
7 Pot Class
NBS National Show  2007


Presentation of the
Fred Martin Trophy
NBS National Show  2007

My greenhouse in 2013
                   

WEBSITE CONTRIBUTIONS

Cut Blooms for Exhibition  2014     Tuberous Double Pots for Exhibition  2014

Countdown to the Southport & National Shows 2013
 Week 1    Week 2     Week 3     Week 4     Week 5     Week 6     Week 7Week 8     Week 9     Week 10

Greenhouse  2004 & 2007     2009

Bob Bryce Albums
Album 1  Ayr 2002   ~   Album 2  Southport 2002 & 2004   ~   Album 3  Ayr 2003 & 2004
Album 4  Southport 2005   ~   Album 5  Southport 2006   ~   Album 6  National 2001 & 2002
Album 7  National 2007   ~   Album 8  Ayr 2006   ~   Album 9  Ayr 2007
Album 10  Southport 2007   ~   Album 11  Miscellanous

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