This section is from the book "The Gardener V2", 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.
On this occasion the grand specimen plants of Mr Baines, gardener to H. L. Micholls, Esq. of South-gate, were worthy of special notice, both in the stove and greenhouse flowering and foliage plants; he, as usual, carried off first honours. The charming Dipla-denia amabilis, a well-grown plant of large size of Hederoma tulipifera, and An-thurium Scherzerianum, which no collection of flowering stove plants should be without; there are numerous inferior forms of it in commerce, the spathes of some being very much smaller than in the best variety. Orchids from Mr B. S. Williams of Holloway were well represented; his highly-coloured Cattleya lobata and Cypripedium caudatum were the best. New plants were numerously shown. Botanical certificates of merit were given to Messrs Veitch for Begonia intermedia, Dieffenbachia Bansei, Dracaena amabilis, and D. Wisemanni; Paullinia thalictri-folia and a very distinct species of Selaginella from Japan; to Mr W. Bull for Cycas elegans, Lilium auratum virginale, Macrozamia Frazeri, Ptychosperma regalis, Phormium texax albo variegatum, Thrinax elegantissima, and Warsce-wiczella velata; to Mr B. S. Williams for Agave Ortgiesiana and Restrepia an-tenifera; and to Messrs Paul & Son for Cupressus Lawsoniana alba pendula.
Horticultural certificates were given to the following: - Zonal Pelargoniums, Polly King, Flame, and Craven Fox, from Mr J. George, Putney Heath; Ianthe, Sir C. Napier, and Wellington, green-leaved; Mont Blanc, Lady Dorothea Neville, and Countess of Flanders, variegated, from Mr W. Paul; Bronze Queen, and Tricolor Alice Maud Mary from E. G. Henderson & Son; and Stage Pelargoniums, The Bride and Rubens from Mr Nye, gardener to E. B. Foster, Esq. of Windsor.
This is the last, and perhaps the best, show of the Royal Botanic Society for the season. There were dinner-table decorations, epergnea and bouquets of intense interest to the ladies, a few stove and greenhouse plants, and an excellent exhibition of fruit. Remarkably fine collections of fruit were shown by Mr Lynn, gardener to Lord Boston, Hedsor, and Mr A. Johnson, Savernake, Wilts. The first prize was awarded to Mr Lynn: he had magnificent Grosse Mignonne Peaches, a splendid Queen Pine-apple, well-coloured Elruge Nectarines, Sir J. Paxton Strawberries, Black Hamburg Grapes, and a good Melon; Mr Lynn was also first for a collection of out-of-doors fruit. Baskets of Black Grapes, not less than 12 lb., consisting entirely of Black Hamburg, and very good; Mr C. Berry, gardener to J. Da Silva, Esq., Burntwood House, was first; Mr A. Johnson, second; and Mr Osborne, Kay's Nursery, Finchley, third. 12 lb. baskets of White Grapes were all Muscat of Alexandria: the first prize basket was well ripened, and came from Mr P. Feist, gardener to R. Ashston, Esq., Staines; second, Mr Osborne; and Mr W. Davies, Frien Barnet, third.
The Black Hamburg Grapes were, with one or two exceptions, badly coloured.
For a single dish of three bunches, Mr Douglas, gardener to F. Whitbourn, Esq., Ilford, was first; Mr Walker, gardener to H. J. Atkinson, Esq., Acton, second; Mr Lane, gardener to J. Miles, Esq., Barnet, third.
A dish of any other black sort: Messrs Standish were first, with Madresfield Court, well coloured, the other sorts taking prizes being Black Prince.
Muscats were exceptionally fine, Mr Ritchie, gardener, Frognal, Hampstead, was first with Bowpod; Mr Barham, gardener to Lord Ormanthwaite, was second with Muscat of Alexandria; and Mr Kemp, gardener to the Duke of Northumberland, third.
In the class for a dish of any White Grape, except Muscat, Mr Cole, gardener to E. Budgett, Esq, Ealing Park, was first with Buckland Sweetwater; Mr Standish, of Ascot, was second with Ascot Citronelle, a variety with a distinct and peculiar Frontignan flavour. Some excellent Queen Pines were shown, one weighing 6 lb.
In the class for any variety but Queen, the first prize was awarded to a Providence; the second and third to Smooth-leaved Cayenne. The best green flesh Melon was Queen Emma, and the best scarlet flesh was Scarlet Gem.
There were also magnificent dishes of Royal George, Grosse Mignonne, and Violette Hative Peaches; Violette Hative, Elruge, and Balgowan Nectarines; and, considering the season, remarkably fine fruit of British Queen, President, Lucas, and Frogmore Late Pine Strawberries. J. Douglas.