(past) Show Rules

This is an additional archival resource to guide members in entering shows. It includes helpful tips and techniques for presenting exhibits but is superseded by the more recent Mini-Show Guide (Updated 2019).  The Judges will refer to the Mini-Show Guide for rules, fruit and vegetable numbers, and such.


Except where otherwise stated, all classes are open to members and non-members, but trophies will be awarded only to members.

ENTRY FORMS to accompany individual entries on the show tables. They must bear the EXHIBITOR’S NAME.
ENTRY FORMS are available at General Meetings. They will also be available at each Seasonal Show’s Friday night set-up and at the door on Saturday at 8:30 am.

All exhibits must have been grown by the exhibitor, except in decorative division where they may be from a friend’s garden.

Potted plants must have been owned by the exhibitor for at least 3 months prior to the show.

Exhibits are to be of 1 stem unless stated otherwise.

Exhibitors may show more than 1 entry in a class provided they are different cultivars.

Exhibitors are expected to use the club containers, except for Junior, Decorative, Potted Plant, and Display Only divisions; and where a bowl, jug or snifter is required, and where otherwise indicated. (For example Bowl of Petunias.) There are instances where the smallest bikini might be too big or the exhibitor has a particular vase they wish to use. The important consideration is that the container does not detract from the exhibit.

Exhibits are not to be removed from show tables until the published removal time. This may be shortened or extended at the discretion of the show chair. Any change to this rule will be announced publicly.

Plant variety names, when known, should be shown on entries.

The Display Only category will not be judged.

Judges may create additional sub-classes at their discretion.

Judging is done by BC Council of Gardens’ Judging Standards for Non-Specialized Shows, 2017, and by the View Royal Garden Club Exhibitor’s Handbook for Vegetables and Fruits 2005 (updated). A further exception is for Chrysanthemums and Dahlias, which are to be judged “for garden effect only” – not as strictly as with the BC Council of Gardens Judging Standards.

Prizes are to reflect quality and will not be awarded automatically.

Vegetables and Fruits will be judged according to the VRGC Exhibitor’s Handbook for Vegetables and Fruits.

Number Of Entries For Vegetable & Fruit Divisions

**printable version of mini-show-guide-vegetable-and-fruit-numbers (supersedes the list below)**

Artichoke, globe, 1 specimen

Asparagus, 3 stalks
Stalks should be fresh, clean, crisp, straight and uniform in diameter and length (6”-12”). Tips should be plump, solid & compact. Base of stalk should be white, but at least ¾ an even dark green.

Beans, bush, stems on, 6 pods
Beans, Scarlet Runner, stems on, 6 pods
Beans, other climbing, stems on, 6 pods

Beets, globe, 3 beets
Beets, cylindrical, 3 beets

Broccoli, sprouting, 1/4 lb or 1 head

Cabbage, green/red/purple, 1 head

Carrots, 3 carrots

Corn, husks and shanks off, 3 ears

Cucumber, Long English, 1 only
Cucumber, any other variety, 1 only
Cucumbers, pickling, 3 only

Garlic, 3 bulbs, ripened with neck attached

Kale, 1 leaf, in club container, with water

Leeks, 1 only

Lettuce, head type, in club container with water
Lettuce, leaf type, in club container, with water

Onions, ripened off, 3 bulbs

Parsnips, 1 only

Peas, standard, stems on, 5 pods
Peas, edible pod, ‘Snap’, stems on, 5 pods
Peas, edible pod, ‘Snow’, stems on, 5 pods
Pods to be smooth in texture with a uniform rich green colour and free from rust or mildew.

Pepper, Sweet, stem on, 1 standard size or 3 of small varieties
Pepper, Hot, stem on, 1 of standard size or 3 of small varieties

Potatoes, brushed – not washed, 3 of same variety

Pumpkin, stem attached, 1 only

Radish – 3 roots
Should be crisp, smooth, uniform, free from blemishes and bright in colour. Tops and roots should be left on. Radishes may be washed but not scrubbed.

Shallots, 1 bulb

Squash, Zucchini, under 8 inches, 1 only
Squash, summer, other than Zucchini, 1 only
Squash, winter, large variety, 1 only
Squash, winter, small variety, 1 only

Swiss Chard, 1 leaf, in club container, with water

Tomatoes, green, cherry type, stems on, 5
Tomatoes, red, standard size, stems on, 3
Tomatoes, red, Beefsteak, stems on, 1
Tomatoes, red, Cherry type, stems on, 5
Tomatoes, green, standard size, stems on, 3
Tomatoes, red, Roma type, stems on, 3
Tomatoes, other than above, numbers appropriate to size


**printable version of mini-show-guide-vegetable-and-fruit-numbers (supersedes the list below)**

Apples, all one variety, should be named, stems on, 3

Blackberries, stems on, 6

Grapes, 1 bunch, variety should be named

Peaches, all one variety, should be named, stems on, 3

Pears, all one variety, should be named, stems on, 3

Plums, all one variety, should be named, stems on, 3

Raspberries, stems on, 6

Rhubarb, 3 stalks
Stalks should be uniformly about 18” long and ½” to ¾” diameter, straight, clean, smooth, firm and plump. A little green at the top end and a thumbnail splotch of white at the base are normal. Root ends are not cut off but the sheaths may be removed. Tops should be 1” to 2” of leaf cut in a semi-circle. Rhubarb should be pulled, not cut.

Any other berry, stems on, 6

Any other fruit, not berries, 3


**printable version of mini-show-guide-vegetable-and-fruit-numbers (supersedes the list below)**


Bloom – An individual flower, or solitary flower or composite head. No buds.

Bowl – A container with the inside mouth wider than the height of the container as measured from the table surface to the container’s highest point. Always check maximum bowl size to avoid NAS.

Bulb – Includes true bulbs, corms, tubers and rhizomes

Cultivar – A variety as “Peace” (a rose cultivar), or “Blue Lake” (a bean cultivar). Please name cultivar if known.

Jug – A container with a pouring lip and handle.

NAS – “Not According to Schedule” Judge’s comment. Please take note of any Judge’s comments made on entry forms.

Novice – A competitor who has entered horticultural shows for less than 3 years, or who has won less than 3 first prize ribbons in that period of time.

Specimen – An individual item according to the classification: 1 plant, 1 bloom, 1 fruit, etc.

Spike –A single upright stem bearing several flowers attached directly or on extremely short stalks. (eg. gladiolus)

Spray – A multi-branched inflorescence at least 2 blooms open. (eg. phlox, spray chrysanthemum)

Stem – One spike or one spray on its stalk, or a single blossom on its long stalk or pedicel. May include buds.

Specimen bloom – Exhibits with 1 flower to a stem without side buds (having been dis-budded at an earlier stage).

Vase – A container with the inside mouth width less than the height of the container

Decorative Exhibit:

– Plant material with or without accessories, contained within a space as specified on show schedule
– Bases, backgrounds, and title cards may be included.
– Plant material must predominate over all other components of the exhibit.
– Fresh plant material must be in water or in water-retaining material.
– Painted and/or artificially coloured plant material may be used unless otherwise stated in the regulations.
– Artificial plant material may not be used.

Decorative Design

The use of the design elements:
space, line, form, texture, colour and pattern
according to the design principles:
balance, rhythm, proportion, scale, contrast, dominance, unity
to achieve a work of beauty, expression and harmony.
A planned expression created with plant materials and space, including containers, bases, accessories or other components.
The term ‘design’ supersedes the obsolete terms of ‘arrangement’ and ‘composition’.

Decorative Styles:

Traditional: Styles of designs that originated in the post-war era and are still in use. They are based on geometric forms.

Modern Line: Styles of design that show a dominance of line plant material with space within the design considered a part of it.

Designer’s Choice: Exhibitors may use the style they prefer.




  • good size for variety
  • H Tea ½ to ¾ open
  • circular outline and formed
  • single centre


  • not typical
  • immature or blown
  • petals few or missing & centres not well-formed
  • insects on entry



  • Bright, firm, clean & or free from blemish


  • faded, drooping, soiled, diseased



  • at least 2 clean and undamaged


  • diseased, dirty, damaged



  • straight and in proportion to flower size


  • weak, bent or twisted, diseased



  • uniformly domed or flat


  • any bloom above or below outline



  • up to ¼ open with at least 2 petals beginning to unfurl


  • closed bud
  • more than ¼ open
  • sepals up

Back to:

Guide for Entrants
How To Exhibit

ENTRY FORMS for shows

updated March 8, 2018

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