British Show Rules

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DaveW
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Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 2:36 pm
Location: Nottingham, England/UK

British Show Rules

Post by DaveW »

Cactus & Succulent shows around the world work to different rules and have different styles of judging. Therefore you may be interested to read how British rules set by the British Cactus & Succulent Society differ from yours?

One difference is as long as the pot is clean and undamaged it does not figure in the judging. Therefore a fancy or expensive pot will not get extra points for an exhibit, the reason being we consider it is a plant show and not a ceramics show, therefore it is solely the plant that counts

Also for our public shows, other than just an internal branch or local club table show, an accredited judge who has taken a BCSS Judges course and passed has to be used. Not just one of the local club members, even if they have grown our plants for 30 years or more. That is to try and ensure uniformity of judging without personal preferences coming into play too much. Our judges courses are open to all our members therefore anybody can try and pass them to qualify as a judge.

Because classifications and opinions change so often, ours adopt an arbitrary show classification, grouping things together that are easier to judge against each other rather than slavishly follow any current classification. Virtually throughout the history of our plants there has always been more than one classification in use throughout the world. At the moment the two prominent ones are that by David Hunt and Joel Lode'.

Anyway for the sake of interest to compare it with your rules and in case others want an example to set up their own shows and draw up schedules here is our Handbook of Shows:-

https://society.bcss.org.uk/images/bcss ... bsiteV.pdf
Mrs.Green
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Re: British Show Rules

Post by Mrs.Green »

Thank you for sharing DaveW 🙂 I have a question though, taken from Rules for exhibitors; 6.1; ‘ Participants should not use social media to publicise exhibitors' proposed entries for shows, where they might be seen by, and therefore possibly influence, the judge of said show.’

In these days with ‘everyone’ on social media I would guess that rule is pretty unlikely to be strictly followed? Some plants would be pretty easy to recognize for different reasons, if you already have seen a pic of it or even ‘worse’ IRL.

Which brings me to the next question. Admittedly GB has a much larger population than we have but still, I would guess that a great deal of the more experienced growers/judges know each other in some way or another?

Some exhibitors wouldn’t think or may have a feeling of thats not always only the plant in question thats given the prize but could be influenced by the fact that judge John Smith is friends with exhibitor James Doe and may very well have seen the plant/s in question last week?
DaveW
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Location: Nottingham, England/UK

Re: British Show Rules

Post by DaveW »

The problem with all show plants Mrs Green is they tend to go around the show circuit and people remember them. Therefore what difference Social Media would make I fail to see since its not the public that votes for them but a qualified judge, supposedly working to a set of rules on how the plants should be judged. Obviously whilst the entry cards are placed name down for judging the judges remember prize winning plants from other shows they judged, as do other show visitors and probably who actually owns them,

All you can do is to have a large enough pool of qualified judges so the same few do not frequently judge the same show. Unlike many local flower show where "Fred XX" has judged it for the last 10 years.

The same applies to friends judging friends, the only way to mitigate that is a constant rotation of judges every year then hopefully some will not know the exhibitor. That is the reason in BCSS shows, other than a small branch meeting table show, require all the other more major shows open to the public to have to have a qualified BCSS Judge. These have to be retested at a Judges Course at least every 5 years to see they have kept up with the newer discoveries, therefore its not a "once qualified for life job".

Many times you have to rely on the exhibitor to comply with the rules. In the past there used to be a rule the plant had to be owned by that exhibitor for one year before it was shown in order to show they could grow it and not kill it in that time!. This was often ignored and cases of exhibitors buying a specimen plant from a nursery or acquiring it the week before the show and exhibiting it were not unknown. In the end they decided it was a plant show after all and it was the plant that really won the prize not the exhibitor. Few of us grow all our plants from seed to maturity and plants change hands as collectors downsize collections or die. Also "cheque book" exhibiting takes place where somebody goes out and buys a mature or exceptional plant solely for winning shows

Yes the people who actually did all the growing do not always get the credit. I believe the ultra establishment Royal Horticultural Society realised the aristocracy did not dirty their hands with gardening and employed gardeners to do that. However still wanted to show plants in shows, therefore the card in prominent letters said "Exhibitor Lord XX" and at the bottom in smaller print "Gardener Fred XX". I think most of us would consider the gardener should have got all of the credit?
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Aiko
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Re: British Show Rules

Post by Aiko »

DaveW wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 2:50 pm I think most of us would consider the gardener should have got all of the credit?
I also think the horse that is doing all the jumping should get the Olympic medal, not the person riding on top of it.
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loyall
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Re: British Show Rules

Post by loyall »

Aiko wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 3:06 pm I also think the horse that is doing all the jumping should get the Olympic medal, not the person riding on top of it.
Reasonable argument, but I think that it is the horse/rider team that competes. The horse has to be sufficienly strong and experienced to meet the demands of the rider, while the rider has to be skilled and confident enough to bring out his animal's best performance. That said, it was the gardener not the lord that cultivated the show plant.
Mrs.Green
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Re: British Show Rules

Post by Mrs.Green »

DaveW wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 2:50 pm The problem with all show plants Mrs Green is they tend to go around the show circuit and people remember them. Therefore what difference Social Media would make I fail to see since its not the public that votes for them but a qualified judge, supposedly working to a set of rules on how the plants should be judged. Obviously whilst the entry cards are placed name down for judging the judges remember prize winning plants from other shows they judged, as do other show visitors and probably who actually owns them,

All you can do is to have a large enough pool of qualified judges so the same few do not frequently judge the same show. Unlike many local flower show where "Fred XX" has judged it for the last 10 years.

The same applies to friends judging friends, the only way to mitigate that is a constant rotation of judges every year then hopefully some will not know the exhibitor. That is the reason in BCSS shows, other than a small branch meeting table show, require all the other more major shows open to the public to have to have a qualified BCSS Judge. These have to be retested at a Judges Course at least every 5 years to see they have kept up with the newer discoveries, therefore its not a "once qualified for life job".

Many times you have to rely on the exhibitor to comply with the rules. In the past there used to be a rule the plant had to be owned by that exhibitor for one year before it was shown in order to show they could grow it and not kill it in that time!. This was often ignored and cases of exhibitors buying a specimen plant from a nursery or acquiring it the week before the show and exhibiting it were not unknown. In the end they decided it was a plant show after all and it was the plant that really won the prize not the exhibitor. Few of us grow all our plants from seed to maturity and plants change hands as collectors downsize collections or die. Also "cheque book" exhibiting takes place where somebody goes out and buys a mature or exceptional plant solely for winning shows

Yes the people who actually did all the growing do not always get the credit. I believe the ultra establishment Royal Horticultural Society realised the aristocracy did not dirty their hands with gardening and employed gardeners to do that. However still wanted to show plants in shows, therefore the card in prominent letters said "Exhibitor Lord XX" and at the bottom in smaller print "Gardener Fred XX". I think most of us would consider the gardener should have got all of the credit?
Thank you very much Davew! It’s always a pleasure to read your posts, you writes very well and interesting 👏 And yes I do agree, its the gardener who should have fot the credit.
Aiko wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 3:06 pm [quote=DaveW post_id=394754 time=<a href="tel:1655823012">1655823012</a> user_id=5831]
I think most of us would consider the gardener should have got all of the credit?
I also think the horse that is doing all the jumping should get the Olympic medal, not the person riding on top of it.
[/quote]

I fully agree! I am not impressed by any ‘sports’results depending on another creatures forced performance.
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