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Site updated  October 12th  2020

Chairman : Chris Harwood.   Secretary : Pam Weston.  Treasurer: Phillip Higginson.   

A Potted History:   At a meeting in the School Room, The Talaton Produce Association was formed in November 1949 for Talaton residents and holders of allotments. The annual membership was 2 shillings. Mrs Glover was elected secretary and Mr Eric Bambury Chairman and Treasurer.  The Association's Golden Anniversary was celebrated in 1999 with a party and commemorated by the planting of a Golden Hornet Crab Apple Tree in the Church grounds by Mr Bert Maher, a founder member. 


Membership Enquiries: Telephone Pam Weston 01404 822864

The Association is Affiliated to the Royal Horticultural Society and enjoys a number of benefits from that Affiliation including group free entry to any of the RHS gardens.

Annual Family Membership is £2 and entitles members to enter the Annual Produce Show, held the first Saturday in August, and to order seeds etc. from Dobies Catalogue in any quantity at a discount if ordered before Christmas.
Other attractions include a Garden Visit in the Summer, the committee runs stalls at the Village Day and Christmas How d'ye Do, a pumpkin competition and helps with refreshments at the village pantomime when there is one. 

The Annual General Meeting is in November

                Committee  re-elected at the A.G.M. 2019

   Chairman             Mr Chris Harwood,  Tel: 07709080439

   Secretary           Mrs Pam Weston     Tel: 01404 822864

   Treasurer             Mr Phillip Higginson,


  Committee Members     Mrs Nickie Bitschi, , Mrs Kathy Gray, Mrs Peppi Shaw, Mr Terry Wright. Mrs Sarah Woods,        Mr Steve Spratt





Annual Show
First time ever - Cancelled.

It's with immense sorrow that the Committee has agreed to cancel the show. It would, as usual have been on the first Saturday in August but with all the uncertainty and the need for concern for the safety of all - not least the ageing committee and judges ! - cancellation seemed appropriate. So, sorry to all you gardeners who have been using the good weather to good advantage, sun flower growing children, competitive male cake bakers and all the wonderful people who come along. Next year will be an excellent year and hopefully we can bring out the turnips, the leeks, the flowers , oh, yes and the cakes and all have a really good show.




Annual Show


The committee had hoped that some miracle would happen which would allow us to run our annual show this August. It has not, so regretfully we have canceled the show for this year. It would have been our 70th annual show. We now have an extra year to make our 70th a very special event in 2021. Commiserations to all those members who have tended their veg patches, nurtured their flower beds and slaved over jam pans especially. Before you eat what is edible, it would be great if you could send photos of your ‘prize winning’ produce to Chris Harwood, so he can post them on our web page.

Potato in a Bucket

Pleeeease would all young growers send evidence of their crop and if it is possible, tell us how many pounds or kilos you harvested.




 Ahead at the moment - Sarah Wood. . Not sure about that Sainsbury's label under the courgette !

 sarahvirtual show




 Not Anywhere nearly as good but an offering from Chris Harwood - What about the cake competition then ???


 show pic



 Important Calendar Note: 


 The October sunshine was surprisingly warm when I planted my garlic this afternoon. Good weather to do all those tidying up jobs in the garden, but also good to just stand and admire the glorious yellow leaves of the hedge maple and paper birch and enjoy the rich colours of the hedgerows.

I know I am repeating myself but, if you are having bonfires, don’t forget to check that no hedgehogs have taken shelter underneath yours before you set it alight. There is still time to plant green manure if you have some bare ground. It will compete with weeds and add nutrients and humus to your soil when you dig it in in the Spring. Broad beans can be planted now to give an earlier crop next year. Beans planted now will not be as readily infested with aphids as those planted in Spring. It is not too late to plant sweet pea seeds and garlic bulbs, if you have not already done so.

Next on the agenda is our AGM. This should be taking place on 18th November opening with a much anticipated talk by Sally Nex, but sadly Covid 19 is still making large gatherings too risky, so we will hope to book Sally as soon as we are able and she is available. Our AGM will be a postal one. Current members will be sent Agenda, Officers’ reports, the facility to nominate new committee members and/ or to re-elect the existing members en bloc, if they are willing to stand.

This is time we usual collect subscription money and hand out a Dobie’s catalogue. We have decided to waive the subscription fee for the forthcoming year for existing members. This is to allow for the lack of working events this year. Dobie’s catalogues, offering the usual 50% reduction on seeds, 15% on other items, will be delivered to existing members.

New members are very welcome to join us. Your family subscription will be £2 and on receipt, you will be given a Dobie’s catalogue. If you are interested please contact Pam on 822864 or fill in a membership form (you will find in the shop) and leave it and subscription for her to collect.

Don’t forget :

to feed the birds in your garden and to leave some shallow water for them,

to read Jim Buttress’s Tips on our website and see lots more,

and remember,

Gardening is good for your health!




Tips for October 

   Hopefully you are still enjoying this season’s crops and flowers in some mellow autumn sunshine.  It is now time to start clearing up your veg plot, planting green manure such as field beans, to help enrich your soil and crowd out weed seedlings.  Earth up leeks and celery, to keep them blanched.  Finish pruning your blackberries and summer raspberries.

Remove yellow leaves from Brussel sprouts and cabbages because leaving them to rot on the ground encourages the spread of grey mould. Dig over your potato patch thoroughly. Even Monty Don admits to missing the odd potato in the ground. Those left will sprout again and may carry over viruses and other diseases to infect your crops next year, or as some did on my plot this year, erupt into vigorous growth in the middle a neat row of onions!

As the weather gets colder and days get shorter don’t forget the birds in your garden. Keep feeders clean and make sure there is plenty of shallow, fresh water available. Empty nest boxes need to be cleaned out, ready for next year but also left as a parasite free refuge for roosting in on cold winter nights.


If you are going to have a bonfire, please remember that animals such as hedgehogs may have taken up residence in your heap so make sure it is not occupied before you light up.



We are unable to organise the pumpkin competition safely this year, but there is nothing stopping all you brilliant carvers in Talaton from displaying photos of your works of art on our website. Please carve carefully, then email your photos to Chris Harwood.

Hopefully the competition will be back in the Talaton Inn’s skittle alley next year.

Don’t forget to visit our website to check on Jim Buttress’s tips for the month.

Happy gardening



Jim Buttress’s

Tips for October



1. Cut down asparagus stems as they turn yellow and mulch with well rotted farmyard manure or garden compost.

2. Plant rhubarb crowns (until November). Do not harvest from these for the first two years.

3. Move tender plants indoors to prevent frost damage, but first check plants for pests such as red spider mite. Reduce applications of water.

4. Prune tall growing shrubs that are hard pruned in Spring, such as Lavatera, Sambucus and Buddleia, by half now to reduce wind rock.

5. Plant garlic and finish planting Autumn onion sets and shallots.

6. Shred fallen leaves with a mower and add to compost bin. To speed process, put leaves in a black bags and pierce holes in the bags.

7. Apply barrier glue or grease bands to apple and pears trees, to prevent winter moth climbing the trees.

8. For earlier flowers next year, sow sweet peas under cover in a cold frame or green house, in root trainers or 9cm (3in) pots.

9. Scarify, spike and top dress the lawn, if not done in September.

10. Plant hardy Spring bedding plants such as wallflowers, polyanthus, forget-me-nots and pansies now, into prepared beds or pots.

Purchase Spring bulbs now, while stocks are plentiful. Do not plant tulips till November.


 In Memory


 Rosie James 


Rosie James, died as she lived, wanting “no fuss”. She was a mainstay of our association for many years. Helping to organise, supply and man our plant stall at Village Day; helping to set up the Hall on the Friday evening before the Annual Show then rushing home to bake cakes for the afternoon refreshments, as well as preparing her own entries. Rosie was such a talented all rounder at the Show that she often embarrassed herself by winning all the trophies open to her. She deserved every trophy she won.  The Garden and Produce Association has lost a star member and friend. Happy memories of a lovely lady. 

Rosie (Centre) helping, as usual, with a Village Event, and accompanied by her daughter Charlotte and Mrs Greta Scott










Brilliant weather for gardens so they must have been looking splendid ??? 

Everything else is virtual, so we had a Virtual Open Gardens 

Look at the Wonderful Pictures of  Gardens that MIGHT have been Open on the Village Pictures Page.






 Who Needs a Virus when you have a Slug Like This ??


 Thanks, Nickie, for the following really interesting piece and great photograph


 The other day I was potting on some plants and found a curious pale ball about the size of a chickpea. It then stretched out and became an interesting Slug! Interesting because it’s a Carnivore and won’t eat your plants! 

It has a vestigial shell which you can see in the enclosed photo just above it’s
tail. I have only ever seen one once before, years ago when I was living in Surrey.
I understand that they live in the soil, mine was about half way down a rather dry pot and was waiting for some damp to come out at night. It wasn’t as big as it appears in the photo on an Ivy leaf. So if you find one , put it in a safe place !







 A Poem Submitted by Nickie Bitschi - Probably we can all relate to this!



My Gardening Days

                                                 I try to plan my gardening day,

But good intentions fade away,

As with my hoe I smite the weeds,

I chance upon some precious seeds.

I take my trowel to plant them out,

But “Oh, my can has blocked up spout”,

So to the shed to find a cane,

To push the snail right out again.

And on it goes the same old way,

Each time I plane my gardening day,

Potting ends up just the same,

I do a few, “Oh what a game”,

I’m out of space to stand them in,

Another job I must begin!

And I will end what I began,

One day my chores will run to plan

So on it goes frustratingly,

Five jobs to do, for one to see!





AGM 2019


It was a good AGM , a good attendance and good refreshments but an especially good talk from Dr Mick Street,, an entomologist,National Bee Inspector and ex-Bicton College lecturer. He spoke on the Disappearance of Pollinating Insects and it didn't make comfortable listening . Farming practice, insecticides, fungicides , pesticides.... BUT also too many people in the world. 

The new membership year begins and as a first we have produced a membership card that outlines the programme for the year ahead. Membership remains at £2 per family . So, if you have not signed on the dotted line and handed over your £2  race to the nearest committee member now, get your free Dobies Seed Catalogue and be eligible for the numerous benefits of membership ! 




There were 19 entries in our Pumpkin Competition last month. Despite there being fewer entries than last year, there was a brilliant display in the skittle alley. If you missed this lovely evening do look at the photos on our website. I have said it before, but the carving does get more intricate and inventive each year and the entries become harder to judge. Well done to everyone who entered and thank you for making this such a lovely evening. Many thanks also to Maria for welcoming us again, for setting up and decorating the skittle alley so beautifully and for her Mum’s delicious cakes. And ……a very big thank you to this year’s judge, Jan Ainsley, who had such a difficult task.

The winners were:                           


1st  Maisie Harris

2nd  Katie Copp

3rd Eira Halwyn


1st John Buxton

2nd Elizabeth Dinnis

3rd Elizabeth Dinnis, that is right she carved two beautiful pumpkins!


1st  Benjamin Gray

2nd Jonathan Gray

Adults 1st  Sarah Wood, 2nd  Laurence Wood, 3rd  Nish Halwyn


Do visit our website to see pictures of this years competition.


Annual Pumpkin Competition

 A great show with some excellent entries - the children beat the adults in their enthusiasm to enter.

Next year oldies ???








 Broomsticks left at the door !





















Trip to RHS Rosemoor Saturday 12th October

Well, not a huge turn out but the two who went had a great day, not a drop of rain and even some sunshine. Ideal for photographs and here are a few. It was a particularly good day to go as there were numerous craft displays, working horses demonstrating their skills in forestry work,even an opportunity to learn how to light fires, build dens and climb trees - well, maybe not for the two who went but it was tempting. All in all and , using the benefit of being in the Garden and Produce Association, it didn't cost a penny! Thanks to Pam Weston for organising it.










Craft building from Nature's Own store




 Elephants at Rosemore



 Three Heads better than One



















 Annual Show 2019


 Kitchen staff - backbone of any show !


High Sheriff of Devon - Champion Cup-  Pam Weston. Overall winner, most points.

J W Wise Cup for Gentlemen only - Terry Wright.Highest points in all classes.

Mrs E R Glover Cup for Ladies only- Pam Weston . Highest points in all Classes.

The Young Trophy - Sarah wood and Robin Carter. Runner up lady or gentleman.

WI Cup- Pam Weston, Highest Points section 5 

Palfrey Memorial Cup - Pam Weston. Best flower arrangement.

Sir Jack Boles Memorial trophy - Jonathon Boles, Gentleman's Baking.

Keith West Memorial Cup - John Harris. Highest points in Childrens' section

Runner up in 0 - 7 age group Abigail Wheeler

Runner up in 8 - 16 age group Benjamin Gray

Winner of Public Vote re the Flower arrangement in a wine glass - Pam Weston. 





 Stalwarts of the Association - Nikki and Pam























 Annual Summer Outing  Saturday June 22nd    

Saltram House


 What a day - blue skies and sunshine. Wonderful outing and certainly a wonderful National Trust House and Grounds.  Many thanks due to Pam Weston for organising it. And many thanks to the very convivial group of nineteen who supported the event.


















and last but not least........ not entirely sure how he got on our coach !













Annual Produce Show 2018

 A big thank you to  everyone involved .

Nikki's Figs !

















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