The Lithgow Show and Maureen Ford's family are intertwined

At this year’s show Maureen Ford has come away as the champion of the Miscellaneous Flowers and Bonsai exhibits. Mrs Ford was not only judged on her ability to arrange flowers, but to grow them – setting four Petunia blooms in foil to be expected up close. 

“I am always pleased when I win,” she said.

Her winning bonsai entry, a miniature conifer that’s grown seemingly windswept over a rugged stone would look more at home in a Japanese print than on the fold-out tables of the Lithgow Show’s exhibit hall. 

“I picked up that stone 30 years ago while walking in Lidsdale.” 

Mrs Ford has been entering her flora into the Show for “a very long time”.

She first met her husband, Arthur, at the Show’s exhibits in 1971. He volunteered as a steward at the Show for forty years. 

The couple were much more excited about another exhibit winner.

Mrs Ford’s six-year-old great-grandson, Isaac Eilerson, was named the champion of the Children’s Horticulture 9 Years and Under exhibit for his flower arrangements and a watermelon carved into the shape of a rather cute shark.

“I cried when the judge announced it,” Mrs Ford said.

“He just loves flowers.”