The great and the good

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What goes around come around, which is why July is always a month to celebrate – it’s the Great Yorkshire Show with all its horses, cows, sheep, and, of course, a bonanza of all things to do with plants and gardens.

And, as usual, green-fingered visitors will be in for a real treat when they drop into the Garden Show, which over the years has grown to be recognised as a leading horticultural show in its own right.

The animals may like to think they take centre-stage, but there are a number of gardening firsts being notched up at this year’s event, which runs from July 9-11, in Harrogate. Hopefully, there won’t be a repetition of the atrocious weather conditions which put an early end to last year’s event.

In a coup for the 2013 show, TV gardening expert Christine Walkden has agreed to spend two days at the event, instead of her usual one. The BBC One Show gardening presenter will be on stage at the show on Wednesday and Thursday, running question-and-answer sessions.

The Garden Show is also playing host to BBC Radio York’s Gardener’s Question Time, with daily question-and-answer sessions taking place at noon. Each day, a host of experts from across the region will be sharing their skills and advice with visitors at the Garden Show’s main stage.

Once again, the finalists of the popular children’s vegetable garden competition, organised by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society, have been invited to show off the fruits of their labours.

For months, youngsters from across Yorkshire have been growing fruit and vegetables in boxes provided by the YAS, and keeping diaries detailing their work –and the best gardens will be on display next week.

The popular “Meet the Growers” section is back this year, but has increased in size to cope with demand from visitors. Regional growers, experts in everything from cucumber to carrots and peppers to potatoes, will be chatting to visitors, answering their questions, and even offering recipe ideas.

And exhibitors in the Flower Show will be battling it out for the top prizes and honour of winning the Great Yorkshire Show’s trophies, including the prestigious Doncaster Cup. For more details of the show’s events, and ticket prices, visit www.greatyorkshireshow.co.uk or phone 01423 541222.