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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 7, Issue 2 (June 1, 1932)

[section]

The results (given below) of the annual station gardens competition in the Canterbury District were made known in a report issued recently, by the Canterbury Horticultural Society, under whose auspices the competition was held. A feature of the report is that the judges appointed by the Society comment on the high standard of excellence which has been attained in the general lay-out and displays in the gardens inspected this year—a fine tribute to the staffs concerned in the beautifying work associated with their stations.

The competition is divided into two classes, “A” for gardens well established, and “B” for gardens which have not been successful in previous competitions. For Class A, a valuable Challenge Cup has been presented by Mr. L. B. Hart, the Canterbury Horticultural Society providing a similar prize for Class B. Suitable certificates are also presented by the Society for the stations placed first and second in each class.

The long-sustained midsummer drought and the lack of shelter from nor'-west winds was responsible for several stations having to withdraw their entries, but, notwithstanding these difficulties, the results attained were sufficiently good to call for favourable comment from the judges appointed to make the awards.

The results of the judging are given below:—A. Division, for the L. B. Hart Challenge Cup: Rakaia, 79 points, 1st; Heathcote, 76 points, 2nd; Little River, 58 points, 3rd.

Little River was placed first in Division B last year, and this year was called upon to compete with gardens which had been established for many years. The judges were very pleased with the garden, and awarded a certificate of merit for the distinct improvement shown.

B. Division, for Canterbury Horticultural Society's Cup: Southbrook, 55 points, 1st.

The judges, Messrs. W. J. Humm. H. L. Darton, and L. B. Hart, in reporting to the Horticultural Society, state:—

“The winner in Class A was the Rakaia Railway Station, so well and so favourably known to the travelling public. Considerable improvement was noted here, the whole area, notwithstanding the lateness of the season, being conspicuous by its brightness. The various annuals, particularly the Phlox Drummondi, Petunias. Verbenas and French Marigolds, were the outstanding features, while the rose plot showed evidence of its former beauty. The whole garden, which is an island of considerable length, is noted for its excellence in cultivation and general maintenance.

“The Heathcote Station, which was placed second, is also a great garden, ideally situated and particularly well laid out. The work done here is very little inferior to that of the winning garden. As a matter of fact, only a point or two separated them. The absence of brightness in the flower display, owing to the fact that this garden is, from its situation, a very early one, was no doubt responsible for the loss of a few marks. The judges are unanimous in the opinion that the inspection of the railway gardens should be made at an earlier part of the season.

“The winner in Class B, Southbrook Railway Station, showed evidence of considerable page 61 care and attention. If the alterations in ‘layout’ recommended by the judges are carried out, this garden will occupy a much higher position. The cultivation was excellent.”

The Cups were presented to the Stationmasters concerned at a meeting of the Canterbury Horticultural Society on Thursday, 7th April, when the members responsible for the appearance of the stations were complimented by the Chairman of the Society.

The improvement of station surroundings by the establishment and maintenance of flower gardens, is a work which is becoming increasingly popular in New Zealand and overseas. It is a phase of our work which has many advantages both personal and from the railway viewpoint, and it is to be hoped that in every case where the conditions are favourable, the appearance of our own station surroundings generally will be made as pleasurable to the eye as the well-known garden stations of Canterbury and Otago.

Sweet flowers are slow and weeds make haste.—Shakespeare.

“Wee, modest crimson-tipped flower.”—Bums. (Photo, Courtesy Christchurch Press.) The station garden at Heathcote, Christchurch, awarded second place in the recent station gardens competition.

Wee, modest crimson-tipped flower.”—Bums.
(Photo, Courtesy Christchurch Press.) The station garden at Heathcote, Christchurch, awarded second place in the recent station gardens competition.