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Re: Judging Leaves.... much to be desired.


Dan, I am very involved in leaf judging and the shows.  I must say I agree
with you in many respects.  Let me say this, when you are dealing with
people, like hostas, all are very different no matter how much they
sometimes seem to be alike.

I think, personal opinion, judges need to be more stern.  It is always said
in everything we do as humans that education is ultimately important.
People entering these shows, and especially the judges, need to read and
follow the rules in all respects, but especially where maturity is
concerned.  SO, IF YOU ARE GOING TO ENTER A SHOW, KNOW AND FOLLOW THE RULES.

Those of us who get involved do so for a number of reasons, wanting our new
introduction to win a coveted award because we think it is the best hosta to
come down the pike and many others but the reason I enter the shows is
because I enjoy the process.  I really do enjoy my hosta garden but I don't
believe I really enjoy each plant until I look for a perfect leaf and then
take that leaf and clean it up.  Forgive me for this, "like taking a dirty
child and getting them ready for a special day, wash the face and putting on
clean clothes to show them off".  I REALLY never appreciated the beauty in
each leaf until I entered the cut leaf show.  SO,  everyone has their
reasons and MANY seem not to really read and follow the rules.

Response to Specifics:
 "It also was common knowledge who's entries we were judging."   HOW DID YOU
KNOW THIS?

"One member of our group of five was in tears ........" THIS PERSON NEEDS TO
READ THE JUDGES HANDBOOK AND IN MY OPINION SHOULD NOT BE A JUDGE.

"Does one leaf tell you very much about the worthiness of a hosta?  The
answer is no."   THIS COULD BE DEBATED, BUT ONLY IF RULES WERE FOLLOWED SO I
AM MOSTLY IN AGREEMENT HERE ALSO.

"I would love to see some random testing of judges for competency."  THIS
WOULD BE GOOD TO SEE IF JUDGES WERE READING AND KEEPING THE PROCEDURES AND
RULES TO BE FOLLOWED IN PERSPECTIVE.

THE  REASON STRINGENT TESTING IS NOT DONE IS PROBABLY  BECAUSE THE NUMBER OF
JUDGES THAT PARTICIPATE  (OTHER THAN AT THE NATIONAL AND POSSIBLY THE
MIDWEST CONVENTIONS) ARE VERY FEW AND ARE UNWILLING TO PUT THEMSELVES OUT TO
HELP OTHERS WITH SHOWS THAT ARE ACCREDITED BUT NOT AT A CONVENTION.  IF NOT,
THEY SHOULD NOT BE A JUDGE.   TESTING COULD AND WOULD PROBABLY ELIMINATE
MANY JUDGES.

I JUST TRAVELED 250 (ONE WAY)MILES TO JUDGE A FIRST SHOW FOR A LOCAL GROUP
AND THE RESPONSE FROM JUDGES WAS APPALLING.  THERE ENDED UP BEING THREE OF
US THAT WENT AND FOUR HOURS TO JUDGE THE SHOW.  JUDGES WHO DID NOT
PARTICIPATE, AND COULD HAVE,  DO NOT KNOW WHAT THEY MISSED!  WE HAD A GREAT
TIME WITH GREAT PEOPLE!   I WILL ALSO SAY HERE IN MY OWN DEFENSE, I KNOW
THERE ARE CIRCUMSTANCES THAT PREVENT PEOPLE FROM TRAVELING,  SOME DISTANCES
ARE MUCH TOO FAR, ETC.  I AM ONLY SAYING IF IT IS REASONABLY POSSIBLE TO
ACCEPT A JUDGING ASSIGNMENT TO HELP OUT OTHERS, JUDGES ARE SUPPOSED TO BE
WILLING TO DO THAT.  THESE PEOPLE WENT TO A LOT OF WORK TO HAVE AN
ACCREDITED SHOW.  THE VERY LEAST JUDGES ARE SUPPOSED TO DO AND IT IS IN THE
RULES, IS TO RESPOND TO A REQUEST FOR JUDGING.  MANY TIMES, THAT DOES NOT
HAPPEN.

I HAVE MY SHIELD UP SO IF YOU WANT A DEBATE OR DISAGREE, HAVE AT IT.  YOU
NEED TO KNOW I AM NOT GOOD AT DEBATES.

BETH ARNOLD
Peoria Illinois  Zone 5


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