A dazzling crop of new and heritage daffodils will appear at this year’s Falmouth Spring Flower Show at the Princess Pavilion.

But the varieties chosen to show on March 24 and 25 will depend on the weather.

Falmouth daffodil grower Ron Scamp, the show’s president says, ‘We have a crop of fantastic new Cornish bred daffodils and historic varieties we have propagated in our fields. But you never know which will bloom in time. This season the early varieties have flowered even earlier than usual and the later ones are dormant because of the November cold snap.

‘Whatever the weather I can forecast a display of the finest camellias, rhododendrons, magnolias, cut flowers, floral art and children’s exhibits in our show which was first held in 1910, making it the oldest Spring flower show in Cornwall.

The first Penzance and Cornwall County shows were originally commercial daffodil shows and did not have the range of floral exhibits they have today. Our Falmouth flower show is unique.’

In 2018 some of the show’s committee and vice-presidents will notch up an equally unique number of years with the show, both as exhibitors and organisers.

Newcomer Jean Carr, who joined a mere five years ago, says, ‘Between them a core team have notched up over 400 years with the show, some originally joining as exhibitors which they still do today. I would love to know if this is a Cornish record.’ Amongst them are honorary vice presidents Alan Cox who first took part as a boy ‘the year the marquee blew down’ (1954) and Brian Phillpotts now age 87, who as a 15-year-old Falmouth council apprentice gardener helped stage exhibits from Fox Rosehill gardens. Ron Scamp first entered his daffodils in 1971, while Reg and Pearl Sleeman, respectively the show’s chairman and treasurer, together tot up 70 years plus with the show.

Vice President Elizabeth Doidge, current holder of the Challenge Cup for floral art, says, ‘I originally exhibited camellias over 40 years ago, while my mother won cups for floral art.’ This year show Elizabeth will create a floral tribute for the centenary of the Falmouth Women’s Institute to go with their exhibition at the Princess Pavilion during the flower show.

Show secretary Jean Cook, now a retired school teacher, entered a mobile from her reception class at Connor Downs school in 1990. She remembers, ‘It was a very intricate creation of paper eggs, chicks, daffodils and butterflies with miles of ribbon.

As I stepped from the car outside the Princess Pavilion a gust of wind tore it from my grip. In tears I rushed into the hall clutching my tangled masterpiece. Pearl Sleeman sat with me for ages sorting out the mess and the children won a cup for their efforts – thanks to Pearl.

‘After that my children Ben and Elizabeth used to enter all the children’s classes. To my surprise a camellia I entered won a first certificate. That started my competitive life in flower shows and becoming a member of the Falmouth committee.’ Ron says, ‘The team effort and comaraderie is fantastic. We are fortunate that in recent years Tracy Hladkji organises our trade stands, David Garwood helps set up the show, and Phil Hart is our new Vice Chairman.

And we could not manage without support from Jacqui Owen and the Cormac and university gardeners from Tremough. But to take the show forward it now really needs new people and hopefully they will emerge this year.’ For the 2018 show schedule and entry forms call 01326 316866 or 01326 314055, or email rgsleeman1@talktalk.net.

There are no entry fees for taking part and all exhibitors get into the show for free, as do children under 16. Closing date for entries is March 18. For updates see Falmouth Spring Flower Show on Facebook.