- Eligibility of Exhibitors: Unless otherwise stated, only members of the Society may compete.
- Eligibility of Exhibits – plants: All plants exhibited in the on-line show must be the bona fide property of the exhibitor, growing in a container or in the exhibitor’s own garden. They must have been photographed during the period 1 October 2017 to 24 December 2018 (This extended period is to facilitate entries from members in the Southern Hemisphere.)
- Eligibility of Exhibits – photographs: The photograph used to portray the exhibitor’s entry need not have been taken by the Exhibitor. This is not a photographic competition – the quality of the photograph is not being judged but it should be good enough to do justice to the plant being exhibited – if only part of a plant, a single flower or an obviously ‘enhanced’ photo is entered, the exhibit will be down-pointed.
- Multiple Entries – in a class: Only one entry per registered user is permitted in each class.
- Multiple Entries – in different classes: The same plant can be entered in more than one class where appropriate – for example, in the ‘Primula’ class and in the ‘Rock Plant in Flower’ class, though it would be preferable to use a different image, even of the same plant.
- Closing of Entries: Entries will close on Christmas Eve (24 December), at 5.00pm GMT.
- Judging: Entries will be judged over the Christmas and New Year period and results will be announced early in January.
- Viewing of Entries – before judging: Up to 24 December, the only information available about a class will be the total number of entries as well as a view of a logged-in member’s own entry in that class. It will be possible to replace an entry in a class.
- Viewing of Entries – during judging: During the judging period, it will be possible to view all the entries in the Show, but at this stage, all exhibits will be anonymous.
- Viewing of Entries – after judging: After judging is completed, it will be possible to view all the entries together with the names of the exhibitors and the results of the judging.
- Definition of “Alpine or rock garden plant”: The term covers all plants, including shrubs, suitable for cultivation in a rock garden of moderate size or in an unheated frame or alpine house. It excludes any plants which will not survive an average British winter under such conditions but includes many plants which do not necessarily grow in mountainous regions. Larger species may be shown but 'suitability' will be taken into account when comparing with those of a more moderate size.
- Conservation: It is the responsibility of the exhibitor to check or monitor the origin or source of any plant exhibited on the website and/or thereby featured in the Bulletin. It should be noted that plants grown from seed of CITES protected plants are also governed by the rules of CITES. The AGS accepts no legal responsibility for the origin or source of any such plant so exhibited. The AGS strongly supports the aims of CITES.
- Number of Plants shown in an Entry: Unless otherwise stated, only one species, one variety of a species, or one hybrid, may be shown as an entry but an entry may contain more than one specimen; unless the entry states that the plants shown were raised from seed deliberately by, or in the garden of the exhibitor. ( Note: please refrain from entering 'group shots' (unless the class calls or allows for such), as this forces the judge into making a subjective decision as to which plant is to be chosen to be judged).
- Naming of Plants: Plants should be clearly named when entered. Additional notes may indicate if the plant has been raised from seed, the parentage or country of origin, but nothing else. Errors in naming, will not disqualify unless it renders the entry NAS.
- NAS: This means ‘Not as Schedule’; for example, if a bulbous plant is shown in a non-bulbous class, a Saxifrage shown in a class for Gentians or, what has been more often the case, a geographical error – a plant may be unintentionally exhibited in a class because of an error in naming ( this is usually picked up during stewarding but it is essential that a current email address is supplied with your entry so such problems can be rectified prior to judging) –an NAS is the last option.
- Plant families: Lists of plant families for non-bulbous and bulbous alpines are shown for reference before and during the entering process - because of the ever-changing nature of nomencleature, these are the accepted families for this show. Note 1 - The lists have been brought into line with the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (usually abbreviated to WCSP). This is an "international collaborative programme that provides the latest peer reviewed and published opinions on the accepted scientific names and synonyms of selected plant families". Maintained by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.( it is available online). Note 2: Certain Families have not yet been incuded in the WCSP, where this is the case "The Plant List" at http://www.theplantlist.org/ is retained.
It should be noted that some Families/Genera include members that are, for the purposes of this show, considered either suitable for 'Bulbous' classes or for 'non-bulbous' classes but not both (see lists)
Special classes of plants
Dwarf Conifers: The term conifer or Coniferae includes Cupressaceae, Pinaceae, and Taxaceae
Cushion plants: cushions should be either grown for natural effect or grown for perfect form.
Plants for foliage effect: shape and architectural value should be taken into consideration.
Plants raised from seed: a plant should be in flower if it is grown primarily as a flowering plant. It should be noted that plants grown from CITES protected plants are also governed by the rules of CITES.
Shrub: a plant that naturally produces a permanent woody framework of branches from the base but does not develop a main trunk . The AGS define a shrub as 'a plant that naturally produces a permanent woody framework of branches from the base but does not develop a main trunk' - the genus Daphne is a perfect example; where the top-most material remains 'woody' and alive from year to year. (sub-shrubs are not classed as shrubs in this competition). In a sub-shrub the woody parts are confined to the lower proportion of the plant ie the upper 'branches' are produced seasonally, the old ones may remain standing but they are basically lifeless – to help visualise this, in the garden the majority of these plants would typically be cut back each spring to allow for the new, more attractive growth.
Bulbous Plants: Classes for bulbous plants are for plants defined in the list provided.
Cyclamen 'groups': C. hederifolium 'group' refers to the species of C. hederifolium that have at different times been regarded as subspecies or forms of Cyclamen hederifolium. C. hederifolium, C. africanum, C. confusum and C. crassifolium. Similarly, C. greacum 'group' includes C. maritimum as well as C. graecum and its subspecies.
Geographical classes: are those which include the words from or native to followed by the name of a country or region, e.g. ‘1 pan rock plant native to Asia’. Geographical classes are for species and/or natural hybrids, excluding garden hybrids. Continents (7): Europe, Asia, Africa, Australasia, North America, South America, Antarctica. For the purpose of these regulations, North and South America are separated by the Panama Canal. For the boundary between Europe and Asia, see the map below.