ASTLEY HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY: Members of the society had scrutinised their new schedules for 2016 to see the interesting programme of events planned for the Horticultural Society at Astley Village Hall. The month of March was a very busy time for us all. Committee members had organized the room on March 9 for the "Annual Gardening Quiz ". This has taken place in the Wyre Forest Area over many years in memory of Jim Greenhow a past member from Astley who was a well known gardener. This year it was Astley's turn to act as host.We welcomed four teams and their supporters from Astley, Bewdley, Clows Top and Kidderminster. Quiz Master for the evening was Derek Walker from Little Larford who had prepared 40 taxing gardening questions. Each team consisted of three eager members ready to battle it out. All the supporters also tried to score individual high points. After the gruelling question and answer time it was Astley's team who were worthy winners with the highest score. They will look after the Jim Greenhow Shield this year. Astley had provided an appertising Supper Buffet with enticing savouries including a variety of sandwiches, sausage rolls, cheese, salad, coleslaw & pick bits followed by a delicious selection of mouth watering cakes, tea and coffee. Many thanks to everyone for their help with the food and clearing up.

On March 16 society members were in the Village Hall again to welcome back well known speaker Reg Moule. He is a local gardening celebrity with many years experience. He is often on BBC Hereford and Worcester and was recently awarded with a long service medal by the Royal Horticultural Society. He has a lovely sense of humour and enjoyed a lively question and answer time with his audience and gave advice on the use of weedkillers, garden pesticides and new products on the market etc.

After the Winter weather and torrents of rain we were all very pleased to welcome the first day of Spring on March 20. The committee prepared the hall on March 26 ready for the The Spring Show. It was great to see the explosions of colour in the hall. Show secretary Robin Saunders was thrilled to see all the wonderful array of fruit, vegetables, flowers and food entries. We were also very pleased to display the clever Art Work from the Astley Primary CE school children.

Full Details of the Spring Show and winners in next month's report.

On April 20 Adrian James will present his talk on Bodenham Arboretum.