One of the delights of flower arranging is working with others to display designs in public spaces, from your local church and village show to area or national shows and festivals.

Organising Competitive Shows, Flower Festivals and Events

The Putting on a Show  publication can be ordered from NAFAS.

The area has staging materials which may be borrowed by clubs wishing to stage their own shows and competitions.  For more information see Area Staging.


Taking part in competitive shows is an opportunity to be creative and make new friends.  Competitions at local horticultural shows are community events which often have relaxed rules for competitors. However within NAFAS there are guidelines for competitors in the NAFAS Competitions Manual which can be purchased from the NAFAS Shop for £5.
Since the publication of the NAFAS Competitions Manual the National Judging committee has extended its definition of what constitutes plant material.  For more information see NAFAS Judges for a link to the latest Plant Material in all its Forms supplement to the Competitions Manual which describes the way in which plant material may be used in competitive exhibits.

NAFAS Aims of Competitive work are:

  • To encourage the artistic and creative use of natural plant material in all its forms within the framework of a show schedule and the current edition of the manual
  • To promote a spirit of fair and friendly competition
  • To uphold the principles of conservation as stated in the Wild Life and Countryside Act 1981 by not using rare and protected wild plant material, preserved animals, birds, insects, coral, sea fans and pernicious/invasive plants, e.g. Japanese Knotweed and Giant Hogweed.

BB&O Top Tips for Competitive Shows 

As a supplement to the NAFAS Competitions Manual BB&O has its own BBandO Show Tips which includes a set of really useful tips for both show organisers and competitors

NAFAS Guidelines

When staging a public event appropriate consideration should be given to health and safety.  The following NAFAS guidelines were mostly produced some time ago, so are not guaranteed to be up to date.  Club administrators may find it more useful to search for appropriate information on the internet.