Ken’s prize winning daffodils showcased on national TV

Date Released - 24/04/2024

A Tameside allotment holder is going to be showcased on BBC Gardeners’ World for his prize winning daffodils.

Ken Harrop, from Denton has been growing single-headed daffodils at a Tameside Council run allotment site since 2006 and managed to reach the national standard within four years.

His green fingered prowess has continued to blossom and last weekend he won seven trophies and the best exhibit for his picture perfect daffodils at the National Daffodil Society show.

Now his daffodils and exhibition are due to be showcased on Gardener’s World, on BBC Two this Friday (26 April) at 8pm.

Ken started gardening in 1970, at the age of 16 and has been the secretary of a gardening society since 1991, where they have a demonstration plot located in two large greenhouses and a twin bay polytunnel in Tameside. Together they grow Chrysanthemum’s for showing in September and November, but alongside this project Ken’s grows his daffodils in plant pots, in the greenhouses.

He currently has 250 pots of daffodils with upwards of 1000 bulbs, which vary in colours of yellow, orange, pink and white. All of Ken’s daffodils flower in the greenhouse that is managed by the gardening society.

Ken said: “I was inspired to start gardening as it’s always been a part of my family, as my mother, father and grandfather were all avid gardeners.

“The reason why I started to grow daffodils was that somebody persuaded me to grow 20 bulbs in 2006 and from there it got out of hand.”

Ken explained how he enters his prize-winning daffodils into around five provisional competitions per year, with the most recent show being the Harrogate Spring Show, in the North of England.

He said: “I find it a relaxing hobby, which allows me to get outdoors, all whilst socialising and making new friends, who I can swap stories and cultivation techniques with.

“At the competitions I’ve entered over the years I’ve made friends for life, not only all over the UK but all over the world, from countries like Holland.”

Ken described gardening as: “A way of constantly looking forward to the coming season or year and never looking backwards.”

A Tameside Council spokesperson said: “We would like to thank Ken for sharing his gardening journey, as it’s such an inspiring story to those who may be considering getting involved in gardening.

“It’s a great opportunity to Think Green and get outdoors where you can. There are great health and wellbeing benefits of gardening and being outdoors.”

There is currently a long waiting list for allotment plots but there are lots of opportunities for residents to get involved in community gardening projects and greenspace volunteering. For more information on greenspace volunteering and community groups, click here.