QBARS - v9n3 Results of the 1955 Seattle Show

Results of the 1955 Seattle Show
By Arthur P. Dome

View of 1955 Seattle Rhododendron Show
Fig. 34.  A View of the 1955 Seattle Rhododendron Show looking down through the
concourse from the entrance.
Forde photo

The Sixth Annual Seattle Rhododendron Show was held, as last year, in the South Concourse of the University of Washington Stadium and being a week later, it ran from Thursday, May 12, through Sunday evening May 15. Again this year, the nearly half-acre, man made cavern was transformed into a wonder land of magnificent plantings of rhododendrons and associate plants which, all together, contained thousands of plants and proportionately more blooms. The landscape displays which lined each side of the long concourse were well planted, each blending well into the next and with the tall Abies grandis as a general background, it gave one the feeling of walking through a woodland garden of the gods.

Despite the retarded season this year, the show proved to be a great success. Our judges, many of whom have seen the major floral shows of the world, proclaimed this one far superior to any of its kind that they have ever seen. There were eighteen landscaped displays ranging in size from eight square feet to seven hundred and fifty square feet and many fine plants were shown in the specimen plant displays. There were twenty-seven classes for cut trusses, all of which were filled but four.

1955 Seattle Rhododendron Show
Fig. 35.  A view of one of the displays at the 1955 Seattle Rhododendron Show.
Forde photo

As one entered the show they looked into the vast display put in by the Malmo Nurseries and. Landscape Service which contained a patio or outdoor room, many flowering trees and some fine plants of R. 'Mrs. G. W. Leak', R. 'Mrs. C. B. Van Ness', R. 'Elizabeth' and a large R. 'Dr. Stocker'. Next was the display of the Vic Mix Campus Nursery which was well planted with many flowering trees, some specimen plants of R. 'Christmas Cheer' and the white azalea, ledifolia alba . The L. N. Roberson Co. display was outstanding for its native trees and shrubs which gave a fine setting for such plants as R. 'Bow Bells', R. 'Unique', R. 'Earl of Athlone' and many others. The specimen plants display was next and this contained such plants as Mr. Endre Ostbo's new hybrid seedling, the best in the show, a cross between R. 'Romany Chal' and R. 'Britannia'. Other Blue Ribbon plants in this display were: R. campylocarpum var. elatum belonging to Mr. Donald G. Graham, R. Earl of Athlone belonging to Mrs. Chas. D. Sully, R. 'Arthur J. Ivens' belonging to Mrs. Wendall Trosper, R. deleiense belonging to Mrs. John Blackford and R. 'Mrs. G. W. Leak' belonging to Mrs. Chas. D. Sully. The display of Anhalt's ShurGro Nurseries contained many large, well-grown plants of R. 'Bow Bells', R. 'Butterfly', R. 'Unknown Warrior', R. 'Earl of Athlone' and others which were set off by the use of a fine lawn and fountain. The Flora Markeeta display was next with two of the largest plants on exhibit. These were two R. decorum hybrids, about twelve feet tall, that could be seen from nearly every point in the show. After this was the exhibit of the University of Washington Arboretum which was put in under the personal guidance of Mr. Brian O. Mulligan, Director. This was an outstanding educational display which showed the variety of types of species that grew in the Himalayas, the Central and Western regions of China as well as the characteristics of the different series. Some of the plants seen here were R. arboreum , R. bullatum , R. auriculatum , R. orbiculare , R. falconeri , R. fictolacteum as well as many of the Triflorums and Lapponicums. The Pacific Northwest Nurseries had a fine display showing how to use the larger flowering trees with plants such as R. 'C. B. Van Ness', R. 'Earl of Athlone', R. 'Blue Tit' and many others.

At this point was the entrance to the cut truss displays. Here were shown hundreds of the different trusses and the floral arrangements. The most outstanding truss was one of R. 'Unknown Warrior', belonging to Mrs. Don Palmer and it took the award for the Best Truss in the show.

Upon leaving the cut truss display and going along the South side of the concourse toward the entrance, was the exhibit of Lem's Nursery which contained many of his own hybrids and specimen size specie plants such as R. bureavii , R. albrechtii , R. falconeri and R. rex . Next was very fine display of dwarf alpine species and their hybrids that was put in by Mr. and Mrs. Caperci of the Mt. Rainier Alpine Gardens. This exhibit contained such plants as R. elaeagnoides , R. sargentianum , R. chryseum and Forrest's No. 19,404 form of R. racemosum . The display of Van's Northgate Nursery was next with a large variety of fine plants such as R. 'Medusa', R. 'F. C. Puddle', R. 'Unique', R. 'Earl of Athlone', R.'Elspeth', R. 'Loder's White' and many others. Mr. Donald K. McClure had a very fine display of selected hybrid seedling rhododendrons of considerable size. Two of the most outstanding were R. 'Fabia' x R. 'Lady Bessborough' and R. 'Fabia' x R. discolor . The Strander Evergreen Nurseries exhibit was next and here was shown how to use rhododendrons in plantings of conifers and associate plants. Mr. and Mrs. E. R. Johnson had a fine display and showed such plants as R. campylocarpum , R. 'Lady Roseberry', R. 'Naomi', R. 'Loderi' var. 'Pink Diamond' and R. 'Elspeth'. Next was the display of Wright's Nursery and Landscape Service which showed plantings of rhododendrons and flowering trees around a pool. The vast exhibit of the Prentice Nursery and Decorating Co. was next with its massive rock work and water falls. In this display were such plants as a eight foot R. 'Bow Bells', large plantings R. 'Elizabeth', the Biscuit form of R. 'Day Dream' and other such plants as R. 'Lady Chamberlain', R. 'Idealist', R. 'Temple Belle' and a large R. 'Unknown Warrior'. The display of Endre Ostbo's King of Shrubs Nursery was very outstanding for here were seen rhododendrons, placed in a woodland setting with many ferns, large mossy logs and suitable associate plants. One could see fine specimen plants of R. thomsonii , R. 'Dormouse', R. 'White Swan', R. kingianum , a cross of R. thomsonii and R. 'Cornish Cross', R. 'The Honorable Jean Marie de Montague' and the better forms of R. augustinii . The Hopkins Nursery exhibit was next, with a large plant of R. schlippenbachii , many of the Sherwood azaleas and several different hybrid rhododendrons that were being used as foreground plantings for the larger flowering trees. The display of the Rhod-A-Zalea Gardens was next with its unique plantings of new hybrid azaleas and rhododendrons well placed among the rocks and logs of the exhibit. After this we arrived back at the entrance and concluded our tour of the "Greatest Rhododendron Show on Earth."

The show was staged by the Seattle Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society and co-sponsored by the University of Washington Arboretum. Admission was charged with the proceeds to go to the fund for the erection of a permanent floral hall on the Arboretum Grounds. The attendance at the show was greater than last year and this was very gratifying considering all the competition we had at the time along with the weather being quite nasty.

Mr. Donald K. McClure did a very commendable job as the General Show Chairman and to him goes most of the credit for making it the success it was. Other committee chairmen who also gave generously of their time and effort were: Show Program, Mr. Edward B. Dunn; Staging, Mr. Thomas F. Martin; Tickets, Mr. Albert F. Hull; Scheduling, Mr. Harry Madison; Receiving and Classification, Mrs. Harry Slater; Transportation, Mr. Karl 1. Sifferman; Judges and Awards, Mrs. J. Wendell Trosper; Publicity, Mrs. W. Webb Moffett; Cut Blooms, Mrs. Leonard J. Wilcox; Attendance, Mrs. Arthur O. Luther and Exhibitors, Mr. Arthur P. Dome.

Since the show was accredited by the American Rhododendron Society, the judging was in accordance with the A.R.S. rules. The judges for the show were: Mr. P. H. Brydon, Salem, Oregon; Mr. Carl P. Fawcett, Tacoma, Washington; Mr. J. Herbert Bowen, Tacoma, Washington; Mr. H. D. Seale, Victoria, B.C.; Mr. Carl English, Jr., Seattle, Washington; Dr. J. Harold Clarke, Long Beach, Washington.

Winners Of Trophies and Special Awards

  • The Frederick & Nelson Trophy

    A perpetual cup for the Best Landscape Display, was won by Clarence Prentice of the Prentice Nursery and Decorating Co. of Seattle, Washington. This is the second year in a row that Mr. Prentice has won this award.

  • The Seattle Trust & Savings Bank Trophy

    A perpetual cup for the Best Plant in Show, was won by Clarence Prentice of the Prentice Nursery and Decorating Co. of Seattle. It was a large, well shaped plant of R. 'Bow Bells' about eight feet tall and five feet through. This is the first time Mr. Prentice won this award.

  • The Seattle Rhododendron Society Trophy

    An annual achievement cup for the Best Hybrid Seedling in the show, was won by Mr. Endre Ostbo of King of Shrubs Nursery, Bellevue, Washington. This was a cross between R. 'Romany Chal' and R. 'Britannia' which had a full truss of bright scarlet blooms. This is the second year in a row that Mr. Ostbo has won this award.

  • The Award for the Best Specimen Species Plant

    Won by Mr. Donald G. Graham. This plant was a large R. campylocarpum var. elatum in its best form.

  • The Award for the Best Specimen Hybrid Plant

    Won by Mrs. Charles D. Sully. This plant was a large R. 'Earl of Athlone' that was exceptionally well shaped and quite full.

  • The Award for the Best Truss in Show

    Won by Mrs. Don Palmer. This was a very large and well shaped truss of R. 'Unknown Warrior'.



CLASS 1. Group of rhododendrons, azaleas and suitable associate plants on an area of not less than 350 sq. ft
1. Prentice Nursery & Decorating Co.
2. Malmo Nurseries & Landscape Service.
3. Anhalt's Shur-Gro Nurseries. 4. Van's Northgate Nursery.

CLASS 2. Group of rhododendrons, azaleas and suitable associate plants on an area of from 200 sq. ft. to 350 sq. ft.
1. Caperci's Mt. Rainier Alpine Gardens.
2. Ostbo's King of Shrubs Nursery.
3. L. N. Roberson Co.
4. Lem's Nursery.