THROUGH THE ARCHIVES: Ulster Horticultural Society holds its spring show

From the News Letter, May 4, 1836

Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 6:00 am
The Old Exchange Rooms in Belfast where the Spring Show of the Ulster Horticultural Society was held in May 1836. Picture: Google

The Spring Show of the Ulster Horticultural Society had been held in the Exchange Rooms in Belfast this week in 1836, reported the News Letter.

The tables, noted the correspondent, “were well filled, and many of the flowers exceedingly good”.

They added: “Considering the backward state of spring, the show of strawberries (from Mr Brownlow and Mr Batt), new potatoes, kidney beans, asparagus, young turnips, mushrooms, cucumbers, sea kale, broccoli, forced rhubarb (raised by Mr McMullan) was excellent.”

Meanwhile, “the apples and pears of last season were also in excellent preservation”.

The finest flowers exhibited at the show were the geraniums which had been grown in the garden of Mr Langtry, and the pansies and auriculas from Mr Davis’s Hillsborough Nursery.

Mr G McCullogh’s pansies, noted the correspondent, were also exceedingly rich and his collection of flowers many fine specimens from his nursery at Comber.

A beautiful seedling camellia which had been grown by Mr McCullogh’s foreman, Mr A Dickson, also attracted much attention.

It was remarked that Mr Dickson has gained quite a reputation for “raising plants of this description”.

Lord Bangor’s gardener, Mr Hutchison, “as usual” excelled in the cucumbers category “which were uncommonly fine”.

There were also “several beautiful” greenhouse and stove plants from the gardens of Mr Batt at Purdysburn and his gardener, Mr Walker, who was described as “a person of superior taste and talent”.