This section is from the book "The Gardener V1", by William Thomson. Also available from Amazon: The New Organic Grower: A Master's Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener.
All the different sections of Tricolors and plain-leaved varieties were represeated, mostly by small specimens. Prizes were offered by W. R. Morris, Esq., for 6 Seedling Tricolors. Messrs Downie, Laird, & Laing of London and Edinburgh had very fine and highly-coloured varieties, and were awarded the first prize; they were also first for the best variety in the collections with Adonis, a finely-coloured variety, with a distinct edging of deep yellow. Flora M'Nab and Stanstead Eclipse are also very fine. Mr C. Turner of Slough came in second. Messrs Downie, Laird, & Laing are also far in advance of any other grower for Gold and Bronze Bicolors, their superb new variety Marechal M'Mahon taking the first prize in this class. The foliage seems as if it would stand any weather, and has a broad rich chocolate zone edged with gold; at least a dozen first-class varieties could be selected from the numerous seedlings they staged of this section. Mr C. Turner had a first prize for three plants of Miss Morris (Golden Tricolor), a very brilliant-coloured variety, with well-shaped leaves; he had also the best Silver Tricolor in the show - Mrs Rousby; it is certainly the best yet seen.
For Golden Selfs, Messrs E. G. Henderson & Son were first with Golden Circle, and Mr Turner second with Golden Gift. The best silver-edged variety came from Mr Pestridge, named Blushing Bride; Mr Turner was second with Miss Kingsbury. The best Ivy-leaved variety was Wilsii, a unique variety from Mr Turner. Messrs Bell & Thorpe had the best Nosegay variety, and Mr Cannell of Woolwich the second best - Charles Dickens and Master Christine being the varieties. Mr Mann of Brentwood had the first prize with Triumph, the best Zonal.
The double-flowering varieties were a good class. Messrs Bell & Thorpe were first with Miss Evelyn, a very good variety, with bright pink flowers. Messrs Carter were second with C. Glijm.
A splendid new Peach, raised by George Darby, Esq., and named Markley Admirable, is stated to be as early as Early York. It is of the shape of Titon de Venus, very large and superior to all other early Peaches for flavour, and well deserved the first-class certificate awarded to it. Messrs Veitch of Chelsea sent a very fine early round Potato named Early Perfection. It is perfection in shape, and of good flavour when cooked. Messrs Lee of Hammersmith had a very fine early Kidney; it is a great cropper, and also of good flavour, but no Potatoes or Peas receive certificates until tested at Chiswick.
A very fine and distinct golden form of Juniperus chinensis came from Mr M. Young of Go.dalming. Very beautiful examples of Anaectochilus ordianus, with olive-green leaves and silvery-white veins, came from Mr Laurence, gardener to Bishop Sumner, Farnham Castle. Coleus Tryoni from Mr Guildford, gardener to R. Tryon, Esq., Toddington Hall, Leicester, is the most distinct variety yet raised; nearly half of the leaf is a bright golden yellow, while the part nearest the stalk is a rich crimson, edged with yellow. Mr J. Fraser of Lea Bridge sent Dracaena Fraseri, a very stout-growing plant, with broad bronzy crimson foliage. Mr Laxton of Stamford sent Double-flowered Zonal Pelargonium Jewel, a seedling from Madame Rose Charmeaux, and no doubt a free-flowering variety. The florets are singularly cupped and beautiful. The colour is crimson. E. G. Henderson & Son sent Begonia multifiora elegans, a free-flowering variety, with pale-red flowers. Messrs Kelway & Son, Langport, sent several seedling Gladiolus spikes. Pictum is the best; the flower is very large, orange, flamed red, with a maroon throat; Hogarth and Oberon are good spikes. Messrs Wood & Ingram of Huntingdon sent seedling Picotees. Delicata, a very pure flower, light purple edge.
Mr Norman of Plumstead sent a very fine stand of seedling Picotees - Ada Ingleton, light purple edge; Miss Ingleton, medium scarlet edge; and Beauty of Plumstead, a fine flower, light scarlet edge. All the above-named productions received first-class certificates. Second-class awards were given to Mr Norman for Picotee Charles Williams, Esq., a large heavy scarlet-edged flower - (Grand Monarch, a very fine heavy purple edge Mr Norman thinks much of, was passed over) - to Messrs Carter for Tricolor Pelargonium Prospero; and to Messrs Ingram for Picotee Mrs Ingram.
August 16th was one of the minor meetings of the Royal Horticultural Society. The Gladiolus was the principal feature, and although they were neither so numerous nor so fine as they were last year, there were some fine spikes staged, and a number of exceedingly fine seedlings. Mr Kelway, the veteran grower, was unfortunate in having his spikes damaged by a terrific thunderstorm on the Sunday previous to the show. His Grace the Duke of Buccleuch gave a series of prizes; and liberal encouragement is now given to this grand autumn flower-show by the Society. In the open class for twenty-four spikes, Messrs Kelway of Langport were first with excellent spikes; and in the classes for private growers, Mr Douglas, gardener to Francis Whitbourn, Esq. of Loxford Hall, Illford, was first for twelve and six spikes. The following seedlings were shown by Mr Kelway, and received first-class certificates: - Phidias (Souchet), Astrea, Araximenes, Archelaus, Yellow King, and Lord Bridport. In the stands exhibited by Mr Douglas, Francis Whitbourn, Mrs Francis Whitbourn, William Early, and Talisman (Souchet) also received first-class certificates.
The best-established varieties were Orphee, Lace-pede, Euripides, Clarissa, Sir W. Hooker, Michel Ange, Mrs Dombrain, Adolphe Brogniart, Horace Vernet, Meyerbeer, Madame Desportes, and Robert Fortune. Hollyhocks were well shown by Mr W. Chater, of Safron Walden; the following were very fine: Prince Albert, Bullion, Eclipse, Marvellous, Incomparable, Alfred Chater, Joy, a perfect flower, Carus Chater, Hercules, Peri, Marion, Cygnet, Queen of Yellows, Champion, Fred. Chater, Splendidum, and Othello, the best black flower.
Cut spikes of Phloxes were exhibited by Messrs Downie, Laird, & Laing, Forest Hill, and Messrs Paul & Son, of Cheshunt, but the flowers were faded, and looked miserable before night. It would be well to show them in pots in future. The best flowers were Figaro, Madame Domage, Princess Louise, M. H. Low, Lothair, Amabilis, Madame Roempler, Madame Pepin, M. C. Turner, and Liervalli.
It was stated that the Markly Admirable Peach which received an award at the last meeting was not in reality an early Peach, but ought to be classed amongst the late ones. Mr Pearson of Chilwell sent a number of bunches of different seedling Grapes, some of them very promising, but none in condition to receive certificates.
There was very little before this meeting except the seedling Gladioluses. Mr Croucher, gardener to J. T. Peacock, Esq., Hammersmith, sent a collection of Agaves. Simisii and Imbricata received first-class certificates; the same award was given to Anthurium ornatum from St Martha, a species with large pure-white spathes: the spathe was cut, and one leaf only was shown, so that it was not possible to judge of the habit of it. J. Douglas.