Department III - Open Class
Division I - Floral Horticulture

Horticulture Entry Chairman/Consultant:  Dorrie Carr   360-923-5896


Entries in Division I are eligible for the Betty Belcher Horticulture Award, Award of Horticulture Excellence, Award of Merit, Arboreal Award, Growers Choice Award, Marvalee Peterschick Award, and Thurston County Fair Awards; the Lily Award, the Glad Award, the Vine Award, the Rose Award, the Posey Award, the Gourmet Award, the Harvest Award and People’s Choice Award.

The Sunset Western Garden Book will be used as reference authority

  1.  General Requirements
          a.  All plant material MUST BE fresh and grown by the exhibitor.
          b.  Cut annuals and biennials must have been in the Exhibitor’s possession from seeds, cuttings or immature plants for at least 90 days; perennials for at least 90
               days; bulbous blooms from planting of bulb, tuber, corm, for at least 90 days.
          c.  Container-grown plants must have been in Exhibitor’s possession at least 90 days. Exceptions: Multiple plantings and combination plantings must have been in
               the Exhibitor’s possession and growing together at least six weeks.
  2. Entry tags are available at the Fair Office, to be filled out in pencil in advance, if possible.
  3. All specimens must be correctly named by Genus, species and/or cultivar/ variety. This name may be found in the Sunset Western Garden Book or online. Common name may also be given.
  4. An exhibitor may enter as many exhibits as desired in any class or sub-class provided each exhibit is a different cultivar, color or type. The Committee will sub-divide classes by variety/cultivar, color or type for judging.
  5. Exhibitors must provide clear (uncolored) glass bottles for cut specimens. Your bottle(s) must be picked up on Sunday, July 31, 8pm - 9pm or Monday, August 1st between 9 and 11 am.  After 11am, remaining bottles will be discarded.
  6. All specimens must be properly conditioned and groomed (cleaned). No shining agents are permitted.
  7. Cut specimens should not have any foliage below water line. Wedging with plastic wrap or any other unobtrusive material is permitted.
  8. Cut specimen length is not to exceed 30" except in Division V Botanical Arts, Section A Class 20.
  9. Due to space limitations, containers in Sections L and M may be no larger than 12" in diameter; Double potting is permitted.
  10. Youth horticulture will be entered in Division IV Youth Exhibits, Section A. Class 18. All horticulture rules apply.


ARBOREAL: Pertaining to trees and shrubs.
BLOOM: An individual flower, usually between 1/2 and 3/4 open.
BUD: An undeveloped flower (or leaf ).
CULTIVAR: A cultivated variety of a plant.
FRESH PLANT MATERIAL: Any part severed from a living plant and in good condition.
SCAPE: A bare, leafless flower stem arising from the ground. Example: daylily, daffodil.
SPIKE: A lengthened flower cluster in which flowers are practically stemless. Example: Gladiolus, snapdragon.
SPRAY: A group of florets on a branched stem, each on its own stalk.
STEM: The major supporting structure in plants to which buds, leaves and flowers are attached at regular intervals at points called nodes.

Section "A" - ANNUALS

Eligible for Award of Merit     


  1. Antirrhinum majus (Snapdragon) one spike
  2. Calendula officinalis (Calendula) three stems
    1. same color
    2. mixed colors
  3. Callistephus chinensis (China Aster) three stems
    1. same color
    2. mixed colors
  4. Centaurea cynus (Bachelor’s Button) three stems
    1. same color
    2. mixed colors
  5. Cosmos - 3 stems
    1. same color
    2. mixed colors
  6. Dianthus (Carnations) - three stems
  7. Godetia (Clarkia) - three stems
  8. Gypsophila elegans (Baby’s Breath) - one stem
  9. Helianthus (Sunflower) one stem or spray
  10. Helichrysum bracteatum (Strawflowers) - three stems
    1. same color
    2. mixed colors
  11. Lathyrus odoratus (Sweet Peas) - six stems
  12. Lavetera trimestris (Lavatera) - one spray
  13. Limonium sinuatum (Statice) - three stems
    1. same color
    2. mixed colors
  14. Nigella (Love-in-a-Mist) - one spray
  15. Petunia x hybrida (Petunia hybrids) - one spray
    1. single
    2. double
    3. ruffled
    4. other
  16. Rudbeckia hirta (Gloriosa Daisy) - 3 stems
  17. Salpiglossis sinuata (Painted-tongue) - 1 spray
  18. Schizanthus pinnatus (Poor-man’s Orchid) - 1 spray
  19. Tagetes (Marigolds)
    1. T. erecta (African oramerican) - 1 stem
    2. T. patula (French) - 3 stems
    3. Any other Tagetes - 1 stem if tall, 3 stems if small
  20. Tropaeolum majus (Nasturtiums) - 3 stems
    1. Singles
      1. same color
      2. mixed colors
    2. Doubles
      1. same color
      2. mixed colors
  21. Viola (Pansy) - 3 stems
  22. Zinnia
    1. Small flowered (under 1 1/2") - 3 stems
    2. Large flowered - 1 stem
  23. Any other garden grown annual not listed.
    No roadside flowers will be accepted in this Class.


Eligible for Lily Award and Award of Merit
(Bulbs, corms, rhizomes, tubers other than Gladiolus and Dahlias) 


  1. Agapanthus (Lily-of-the-Nile) - 1 stem
  2. Allium (Garlic/onion Seed Head) - 1 stem if large, 3 if small
  3. Alstroemeria - 1 spray
  4. Crocosmia (Montbretia) - 3 stems
  5. Hemerocallis (Daylily) - one scape
  6. Lillium (Lily) - 1 stem
  7. Begonia (Tuberous Begonia) - one bloom, stem 1" to 2" long
  8. Any other perennial from fleshy roots not listed.

" California"
(Other than fleshy rooted under Section "B" above)

Eligible for Award of Merit


  1. Achillea (Yarrow) - 3 stems
  2. Aster - 1 spray
    a. A. frickartii
    b. A.novi-belgii (Michaelmas Daisy)
    c. Other garden asters
  3. Chrysanthemum (Daisies)
    a. C. maximum (Shasta Daisy) - 3 stems
    b. C. coccineum (Painted Daisy, Pyrethrum) - 3 stems
    c. C. frutescens (Marguerite) - 1 spray
    d. Other early garden mums
  4. Delphinium - 1 spike
  5. Gypsophila paniculata (Baby’s Breath) - 1 stem
  6. Limonium latifolium (Statice) - 1 stem
  7. Phlox paniculata (Phlox) - 1 scape
  8. Physalis alkekengi (Chinese Lantern)- 1 stem
  9. Any other flowering perennial

(other than fleshy rooted under Section B. above)

Eligible for Award of Merit


  1. Artemisia – 1 stem
  2. Hosta - 3 leaves
    a. same variety
    b. three varieties, - 1 leaf each, card with names attached to entry card
  3. Phormium tenax (New Zealand Flax) - 1 leaf, may exceed 30"
  4. Senecio cineraria (Dusty Miller) - 1 stem
  5. Any other perennial grown primarily for foliage


Eligible for Award of Merit 


  1. Bambusoidea (Bamboo) - 1 stem cut no more than 36" long
    a. Clumping
    b. Running
  2. Carex (Sedge) - 5 stems, length appropriate to variety
  3. Cortaderia selloanna (Pampas Grass) - 3 stems, length in proportion to plume
  4. Miscanthus sinensis (Eulalia Grass) - 5 stems, length appropriate to variety
  5. Any other grass-like perennial

Section "F" - DAHLIAS

 Eligible for Dahlia Award

Dahlias must:

  1. have only one bloom per stem
  2. have at least one pair of leaves (stem must be long enough for leaves to be above bottle rim)

SINGLE ENTRIES - One stem each variety


  1. Bloom over 10"
  2. Bloom 8" to 10"
  3. Decorative.
    a. Bloom 6" to 8"
    b. Bloom 4" to 6" 
  4. Cactus
    a. Bloom 6" to 8"
    b. Bloom 4" to 6"
  5. Waterlily
  6. Ball (over 3 1/2")
  7. Other types not listed above (peony, anemone, collarette, single, orchid, novelty, etc.)

MINIATURE ENTRIES - 3 stems each variety

  1. Miniature (under 4") Decorative
  2. Miniature (under 4") Cactus
  3. Mini balls (2" to 3 1/2")
  4. Pompoms (2" and under)

​Section "G" - GLADIOLUS

Eligible for the Glad Award 

Note: Gladiolus are entered with attached leaves, preferably two for balance (leaves may be under water). The length of the stem should be in good balance to the blooms and very straight. The spike should have about one-third tight buds, one-third showing color, and one-third open blooms. Wedging with plastic wrap, Styrofoam or any other unobtrusive material is encouraged so that the spike stands as straight as possible. (Plastic wrap available from Show Committee.)

 The Show Committee will sub-divide Gladiolus by color before judging.

  1. Miniature - under 2 1/2" - 1 spike
  2. Small - 2 1/2" to 3 1/2" - 1 spike
  3. Medium - 3 1/2" to 4 1/2" - 1 spike
  4. Large - 4 1/2" to 5 1/2" - 1 spike
  5. Extra-large - 5 1/2" or larger - 1 spike
  6. Three (3) spikes of same size, same or mixed colors

Exhibit not to exceed 30" in length 

Eligible for the Vine Award

 Eligible for the Rose Award


Flowering and Combination

Note: Container grown plants must have been grown by the exhibitor for at least three (3) months. Exceptions: multiple plantings, such as planters, dish gardens, etc. must have been grown together, by the exhibitor, for at least six (6) weeks. Exhibits shall be subdivided by variety and color. The Show Committee will sub-divide as needed before judging. Due to space limitations, the container may be no larger than 12" in diameter. Exception: Section "N". Combination Plantings may be up to 16" in diameter

If a plant is considered a flowering plant, it should be exhibited as a flowering specimen.  Foliage plants may flower, but it should be exhibited as a foliage plant if they are grown for their leaves. 


Eligible for Growers Choice Award

Due to space limitations containers in Section L may be no larger than 12" in diameter

Class: 1 Flowering

  1. Begonia
    (1) B. semperflorens (Wax)
    (2) B. tuberhybrida (Tuberous)
  2. Fuchsia
  3. Orchidaceae (Orchid)
  4. Pelargonium (Geranium)
    (1) P. domesticum (Martha Washington)
    (2) P. hortorum (common geranium, includes variegated, fancy-leafed or colored-leafed)
    (3) P. peltatum (Ivy)
    (4) P. tomentosum & others (scented)
  5. Saintpaulia (African Violet)
    (1) single
    (2) double
    (3) trailing
    (4) Mini
  6. Any other flowering container-grown plant - in bloom

Class: 2 Foliage

  1. Begonia - Fibrous-rooted
    (1) B. masoniana (Iron Cross)
    (2) B. rex-cultorum (Rex)
  2. Cactaceae (Cactus)
    (1) single plant
    (2) two or more cacti - 1 container
  3. Crassula argentea (Jade plant)
  4. Sedums and succulents, one variety
  5. Any other container-grown foliage plant not listed above



Eligible for Growers Choice Award

Due to space limitations containers in Section M may be no larger than 12" in diameter.

  1. Combination of Cactus, Sedums and/or Succulents
  2. Combination of mixed varieties of flowering plants - in bloom
  3. Combination of mixed varieties of foliage plants
  4. Combination of flowering and foliage plants  

​Section "N" - EDIBLES

Eligible for Harvest and Gourmet Awards 

Stem length in proportion to exhibit, uniformity important

Class: 1. Herbs to be displayed in a clear bottle in water provided by entrant.

  1. Allium (Chives) - 10 blades
  2. Aloysia triphylla (Lemon Verbena) - 1 stem
  3. Artemesia dracunculus (French Tarragon) - 1 stem
  4. Borago officinalis (Borage) - 1 stem
  5. Coriandrum sativum (Coriander) - 3 stems
  6. Lavandula angustifolia (Lavender) - 5 stems
  7. Melissa officinalis (Lemon Balm) - 3 stems
  8. Mentha (Mint) - includes Pennyroyal - 1 stem
  9. Ocimum basilicum (Basil) – 1 stem
  10. Origanum (Oregano & Marjorams) - 3 stems
  11. Petroselinum crispum (Parsley) - 1 stem
  12. Rosmarinus officinalis (Rosemary) – 1 stem    
    1.  Prostrate - 1 Stem   
    2.  Upright- 1 stem
  13. Prostrate - 1 stem
  14. Upright - 1 stem
  15. Salvia officinalis (Sage) - 1 stem
  16. Thymus (Thyme) - 3 stems same variety
  17. Any other named cut herb, number and length appropriate to variety

Note: Common Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) is considered a noxious weed and will not be accepted. Exception: The variety Foeniculum vulgare azoricum known as ‘bulbing’ fennel is permissible.

Class 2: Fruits & Vegetables

To be displayed on a foam tray with plastic wrap (as needed) provided by the Show Committee.

FRUITS - should be clean and fresh, wiped, but not washed or polished

  1. Berries - approximately 1/2 cup, shown in wrapped plastic glass
  2. Tree fruit - three specimens each variety, named

VEGETABLES - In general, uniformity (same size, shape, color) in multiple specimen exhibits is desired.

  1. Corn - three ears - trim shank to 1" from base, remove husk on 1/3 of each ear
  2. Rhubarb - three stems, pulled, not cut, with 1" leaf on stalk


  1. Cucumber - three of a variety
  2. Lettuce - one head, cleaned and groomed, may be washed, on styrofoam tray lightly covered with plastic wrap (tray and wrap provided by the Show Committee)
  3. Tomatoes - clean with soft cloth
    1) Large - one tomato
    2) Medium (Patio-type) - three specimens
    3) Small (cherry-type) - six specimens
    4) Cluster of small tomatoes (cherry, pear, etc.) with 1/3 showing color, 1/3 some color, 1/3 green
  4. Pepper - three specimens
    1) Green
    2) Other

SQUASH - 1" stem attached, wipe clean gently

  1. Crookneck - 4" to 8" long, three specimens
  2. Pumpkin
    1) Large – one
    2) Mini - three
  3. Spaghetti squash - one
  4. Zucchini
    1) Small/medium - 4" to 8" long, three specimens
    2) Large - one specimen
  5. Other squash, number depending on size of variety

CRUCIFEROUS VEGETABLES - generally one head, remove outer leaves only

  1. Broccoli
  2. Cabbage
    1) green
    2) red
  3. Cauliflower
  4. Kohlrabi - three specimens, same variety, - 2 - 2 1/2" diameter - cut tap root 1/2" below ball, trim leaf petioles to 2"

ROOT CROPS - less soil adheres if dug in dry weather

  1. Beets - three specimens, same variety, 2" diameter ideal, trim tops to 1 1/2", remove small side roots but do not remove tap root. Brush or wash to remove soil
  2. Carrots - three specimens, same variety, remove side roots, trim tap root to
    1/2" diameter, trim tops to 2"
  3. Onions
    1) Dry - 3 specimens, same variety. Do not remove outer scales, cut top to 1/2"
    2) Green - 6 specimens, same variety. Remove loose skin, cut tops 4" to 5" above white, trim roots to 1/2"
  4. Garlic
    1) Regular - 3 bulbs
    2) Elephant - one bulb
  5. Potatoes - brush off soil gently, wash only if necessary, three specimens each variety, must be named
    1) white
    2) red
    3) yellow
    4) any other potato

LEGUMES - six specimens same variety each class

  1. Beans
  2. Peas
  3. Snap peas

ANY OTHER VEGETABLE not mentioned above will be entered under the closest variety with entry tags marked "X"

Section "O" - Collections

NEW IN 2022:  A collection is an exhibit consisting of at least 5 different specimens, each in a separate clear glass container. Judged for cultural perfection of plant material. To be displayed on a table space that is 24" wide and 30" deep.

Section "P" - Displays


NEW IN 2022:  A display is an exhibit consisting of at least 5 different specimens, artistically staged by the exhibitor. Judged equally for cultural perfection and decorative effect. To be displayed on a table space that is 24" wide and 30" deep.

Section "Q" - ANY OTHER

"Puerto Rico"

Eligible for Award of Merit

(with consideration to available space & Horticulture Entry Chairman approval).