The National Begonia Society


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   Mike Osborne December 2010

   Hello to all members, this is Mike, from "sunny" Cornwall, trying to bring a little warmth to a very cold and snow covered West Cornwall. I thought the enclosed photos of one of our local (Camborne)shows,may cheer up the frozen among us, at least the ICE MINT seems appropriate, I share David Staines opinion that it is definitely one to watch out for new year, I was lucky enough to get 2 of them from Bellcross Nursery in Yorkshire, one a present from my wife, the other a present from my lovely daughter Sara. Both plants were rooted cuttings only when purchased, but have made good growth and I shall hopefully harvest 2 decent tubers early next season. The VENUS in the "staging up" photo also turned out to be a winner, I am sure some begonias pan out differently when grown in varying parts of the country, I suppose we all look for what pleases the eye most, then take cuttings to ensure future stocks. Andy Summers (my begonia "buddy") and I have taken a lot of cuttings, and are reducing the numbers of different varieties we intend keeping.
   Like most of us, I have a "cunning plan" for next year, and certainly enjoy the preparation that will go into it, now things are dormant (tubers that is). All my mature tubers are out of the various pots and have had all the compost removed (saved for next years use), and cleaned up generally, de-scabbed and dusted with flowers of sulphur, all that remains is to ensure a frost free environment until start up time again ,for me that will be late February as we have some early local shows-I like to have that colour early on in the season, the 8 foot sand-bed/propagator will probably be working overtime by then. So dont be too "fed-up" with all this weather, things will improve in the new year (oh yes they will!!) and all the winter's work will have been worth it, pink pips will again grace the greenhouse, anticipation will kick in and your "cunning plan" will be hatched, I am still betting on a good 2011,after all we beat the Aussies in the 2nd. test match with 3 more tests in the Ashes to go, there now, it aint all bad, is it??
   Andy and I would like to wish you ALL a merry old Christmas from Camborne and a prosperous new year, take care on the roads and hope to see or hear from you in 2011.

My Greenhouse                      Cambome Show

I do have some surplus mature and cutting tubers for sale. Please contact me for details 
Tel: 01209 712659 ,   E Mail


   Derek Telford  December 2010

Seasons Greetings from Derek

Derek, I am sure all members will also want to wish you and your family
A Very Merry Christmas & Happy New Year
and also thank you for your tireless work as editor of our Society's excellent bulletins.

Brian Simmons


Brian Simmons  24th.August 2010
   It is now 3 weeks since our little show on the south coast.  My plants for cut-blooms were all stopped (growing tips pinched out) when the buds were selected at 20p size 5 weeks before the show.  Most blooms achieved  nearly 9", not as large as the top exhibitors, but nonetheless very presentable.
   These pictures illustrate the vigour still in the plants, all of which have been grown in Scotts Levington Professional M3.   Now, if only some of that vigour could have been harnessed to give an extra 1" - 2" in bloom size - then I would really be flying with the eagles.

   My cuttings this year are also very vigorous. The earlier ones, taken in late April are in 6" pots, others, taken in May  are in 5". But growing large plants  from early cuttings does not necessarily mean a decent size tuber will have developed at the end of the season. This year growth has been so vigorous that the young plants were becoming pot-bound  too early in the season so I felt it necessary to pot on.  It will be interesting at the end of the season to discover the outcome.

 My cuttings taken in late June will remain in the 3" pots that they were rooted in and these pots are in turn now bedded into larger ones.  Dave Coates has used this method for several years with great success.
I will keep all cuttings growing on as long as possible. As leaves yellow and fall I gradually reduce watering until when only the stem is left the compost is almost but not completely dry. The (hopefully) resulting tubers then remain in their pots until after Christmas.


Derek Telford  21st.August 2010

"There was a total and very pleasant surprise presentation to me at Southport Show yesterday (Thursday) from the members of the NW group.
I cannot stop feeling on top of the world for what these wonderful N.W. members have totally and secretly, prepared for me".

Congratulations Derek, this award is thoroughly deserved for your outstanding service to our Society over many years.



Derek Telford  20th.August 2010

Pictures of Derek's exhibits at the KIRKLEES SHOW,
Huddersfield    Saturday 14th. & Sunday 15th. August.  

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