AN accountant successfully defended his top tray title at this year’s Binfield Heath Flower Show, while his father won four awards.
Martin Hedges, 45, of Spinney Close, Emmer Green, took the Ray Williams Memorial Cup at Saturday’s show for his display of onions, carrots and runner beans.
Mr Hedges, who grows his produce at home and at an allotment, said: “I am very pleased but the winning isn’t the main thing, I just like to support the show.
“I have been coming for about five years and I won top tray last year for the first time. It makes it worthwhile for all the effort and planning you put in.
“I probably grow about 100 onions to get three and I enter three different shows — this one, Chiltern Edge and the Henley Show. The carrots look after themselves, as long as you’ve got the soil right, and I use a net to keep the carrot fly off.
“I work in an office so it’s nice to get outside. It’s a release from being stuck on the computer all day and you can forget everything else.
“I don’t go to the gym and I’ve retired from football so gardening is my main hobby.
“It’s a really worthwhile thing to do and I hope more people will enter next year after seeing what my dad and I have done.
“He grows dahlias mainly and I try to compete with him but he normally comes out best.”
His father Keith Hedges, 71, of Hazelmoor Lane, Gallowstree Common, claimed firsts in the classes for three medium decorative dahlias, three small cactus dahlias, three small decorative dahlias and three pom pom dahlias.
Mr Hedges, who grows the flowers in his garden, said: “Dahlias are beautiful. There’s not much work involved and look at what you get. They are works of art.”
There were more than 900 entries for the scores of classes for fruit, vegetables, jams, preserves, cakes and flowers as well as many for children to enter.
More than 1,500 people visited the 68th annual show, which organisers said was a record.
For the full story, results and pictures, see this week's Henley Standard