Wednesday, 5 October 2016

British Cactus and Succulent Society national show

The good thing about having been busy over the summer is having a backlog of trips and other posts.  First up the BCSS national show, which  sadly is only once every four years.  Apart from a good plant buying opportunity it's a chance to meet up with like minded friends and to drool over some show plants.

I didn't take too many photos, but did manage to take some of my favourites.

This pachypodium densiflorum var brevicalyx is a good place to start, there is always one of the densiflorums at the showt.

What's not to like about these strange bulbous plants.  These and the euphorbias were probably the biggest groups in the show.

Euphorbia horrida
One of the stand out pots for me was an aloe I have been trying to grow, Aloe haworthioides x descoingsii.

There are always a few aloe erinaceas, usually single plants given how slow they are, so it was good to see this clump

Not a great photo but this haworthia nigra var diversifolia 'nana' was too good not to include.

I'm not sure about the "nana" aspect tot he name, I always associate that with a paler or yellow form. The plant above was the darkest colour I have seen in a succulent.

Then onto the echeverias. The plant that seemed popular this year was echeveria agavoides ebony.

It was good to see more echeverias this year, there were some nice plants. You can often see the progress of plants that were shown at the previous shows, the ebonys for instance were all much more established this time, although I think my main plant is still bigger than those at the show. One year I will have to actually put one of mine in.

Then the agaves.

This agave polianthiflora x victoriae-reginae hybrid was lovely; very neat and compact.

There were the usual suspects as well; agave utahensis var eborispina

My favourite agave this year was agave echinoides, rare to see them in shows and even more so at this size:

One thing that was noticeable was the amount of plants in nice pots. I have mentioned before that we seem to be behind the States in this respect, this year a lot of the plants were in nice pots. It transferred through to the staged pot section.  There seemed to be two thoughts, the fun side and the more sensible one:

Then to top it off a new UK potter was showing some of their pots. I first saw their plant and pot in the show, sadly I just couldn't get a good photo (a little ironic as I have since learnt that the potter is also a photographer). Anyway there were cards on another table with his website, so I was able to make contact.  His name is Mark Follon, you can see his website here.

By coincidence he posted a picture of this pot on facebook a few days later, so I was able to find out a bit more about his work. Needless to say having been through his site I have already selected a pot which he is kindly keeping for me while I decide if any others should end up with me as well.  Seeing the new pots he is putting out, I am guessing a few more will end up at mine in the future. Great to have someone else in the UK producing pots specifically for succulents.

After looking around the show tables, it was time to shop. I  was very restrained, but along with a few little things I did pick up this aloe polyphylla

It is already spiralling and I selected one that spirals in the other direction to my main plant.

I also picked up some aloe polyphylla seeds, there may be a major new project next year and I'm going to need a few of these.

As usual it was a great day, now just another 4 years until the next one.

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