Information Evenings

Information Evenings are held monthly, public welcome. The program includes a guest speaker, followed by free raffle, supper and a chat at no charge. They are held every 3rd Monday of the month (except December), at 7.30pm in the Wesley Foyer, Wesley Uniting Church Centre, National Circuit, Forrest, unless advised otherwise in the timetable below.

At the monthly Information Evenings beginners and experts alike can receive advice about plants and gardening, exhibiting in the Society’s shows, or simply discuss horticultural matters with others interested in the same.

Monday 15 January 2024 Bill Graham will tell us about he became involved with the Canberra Ornithologists Group (COG), now known as Canberra Birds, and what that organisation and its members do.
Monday 19 February Shaelyn Quirk will talk about her work at The Sustainable Gardener. Sharon and Graeme Davis will demonstrate how to bench flowers in the cut flower and general flowers sections at the Autumn Flower Show.
Monday 18 March 4.30-7.30pm, an evening of dahlias and autumn roses at the Bruce Demonstration Garden. A sausage sizzle will be provided.
Monday 15 April Gurkan Yeniceri will speak on permaculture.
Monday 20 May Keely Small from Mulligans Flat will tell us about her role looking after their captive animals and managing reintroductions in the sanctuary.
Monday 17 June Anka Maria Hoefer will talk to us about Canberra’s frogs – some fun facts about them and how to create frog-friendly habitat in a garden.
Monday 15 July
Monday 19 August AGM. Glenn Sheldrick will talk about mini daffodils.
Monday 16 September
Monday 21 October
Monday 18 November An evening at the Bruce Demonstration Garden. More details to be provided closer to the event.
December No meeting

Location of Wesley Centre

Flower Shows

Four shows are held each year, the first of the calendar year being the Autumn Flower Show in March. The other three shows are held in spring.

Opening hours for the four shows are Saturday 10am-4pm and Sunday 10am-3.15pm.

Entry to the shows is by gold coin donation.

Prior to the show season the Society may hold workshops and lectures for members wishing to become judges, stewards and exhibitors at shows, or who wish to further their knowledge of judging, stewarding and exhibiting.

Shows provide gardeners with an opportunity to show off their flowers, plants and produce in a competitive environment. There are different levels of competition from novice to expert. Also, they provide a chance to see what the experts are growing, and they are a great social occasion when you can compare notes with other gardeners or seek the advice of the experts.

Click here to see two interviews about dahlias, filmed at the 2022 Autumn Flower Show:

  1. Interview with Warren Vigor of Dahlia Heaven
  2. Interview with champion Canberra grower, John Woodfield



Autumn Flower Show 2-3 March at the Fitzroy Pavilion, EPIC

Spring Bulb and Camellia Show 21-22 September at the Fitzroy Pavilion, EPIC

Iris, Rhododendron and Azalea Show 26-27 October at The Abbey, Gold Creek

Spring Exhibition and Rose Show 16-17 November at The Abbey, Gold Creek



Rules and Schedules for all four 2024 Shows

Schedule for the 2024 Autumn Flower Show (amended 11 February 2024)

Schedule for the 2024 Spring Bulb and Camellia Show (amended 4 January 2024)

Schedule for the 2024 Iris, Rhododendron and Azalea Show (amended 4 January 2024)

Schedule for the 2024 Spring Exhibition and Rose Show (amended 4 January 2024)

Most Frequently Asked Questions By Novices


Autumn Flower Show   To be advised
Spring Bulb and Camellia Show   To be advised
Iris, Rhododendron and Azalea Show   To be advised
Spring Exhibition and Rose Show   To be advised

Enquiries and entries to:
The Honorary Show Secretary, Phone (02) 6251 2859

Location of Fitzroy Pavilion at EPIC

Location of the Abbey at Federation Square, Gold Creek

Open Gardens

The Society conducts an Open Garden Program where members’ gardens are open for other members to visit. Visiting open gardens give an opportunity to share ideas. It lets visitors see what the owner grows, how to grow it, and what has been done to tackle the drought and water restrictions.

Please note that Open Garden visits are only available to financial Society members.

Not a member? Go to Membership to find details on how to join or call 6291 5352.


The Society organises interstate bus trips for members. In the past, trips have been arranged for visits to the Blue Mountains, the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show, specialist nurseries, and public and private gardens of significant interest. There has also been a trip to New Zealand.

For insurance purposes, participants on bus trips must be members. Not a member? Go to Membership to find details on how to join or call 0419 517 877.

Bruce Demonstration Garden

The Horticultural Society has a garden at Bruce, adjacent to the Canberra Institute of Technology, where plants are being grown to demonstrate what grows well in Canberra and surrounds. Findings will be recorded for the purposes of future editions of The Canberra Gardener, and information used in other HSOC publications and on the HSOC website.

Working bees are held monthly on the last Saturday of every month except December, from 9.00am to noon, unless the date conflicts with another event. In addition, the garden is open each Wednesday morning (also between 9 and 12) for HSOC members to visit.

Working in the garden is not a requirement and you can come and go as you please. Morning tea is at 10.30. If you would like to join in, bring a mug and some food to share. Please feel free to walk around the garden, ask for gardening advice, join us for morning tea and a chat, or do some light gardening or propagation of plants.

Please note that participants in working bees must be HSOC members for insurance purposes. For further information on the garden, email

The dates for Saturday working bees in 2024 are as follows:

27 January

24 February

30 March

27 April – CANCELLED

25 May

29 June

27 July (There will most likely be a rose and fruit tree pruning demonstration on this day at which the public will be welcome – this will be confirmed when final dates, times and locations are decided)

31 August

28 September

19 October (A week earlier than usual so as not to clash with the flower show the following weekend)

30 November


There are a number of documents reporting on progress with the Demonstration Garden and with the outcomes of trials:

Report of 16 January 2013

Report of July 2014 – vegetable trials

Report of Dahlia Trial 2018

Timeline for the HSOC Trial Garden at Bruce 

Timeline for the HSOC Trial Garden at Bruce January 2017-August 2018

Demonstration Garden Location