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Tributes to Cyril Dart

Cyril was a stalwart of the Devon Exeter Group of the AGS. He grew outstanding show plants which he exhibited at group shows as well as at AGS national shows. He was very successful in both areas with several Farrer medals to his name, the first of which was a superb pan of Iris Katherine Hodgkin shown at the South Wales Show at Caerleon. This was quite unusual as Cyril was perhaps better known for the wonderful cushion plants he grew, particularly Drabas and Saxifrages. Recently he became very interested in Pulsatillas showing a very dark, almost black, specimen, probably a form of P. rubra on one occasion and generously passing one on to the author of this piece. Recently he showed us a pale blue form derived from an old Budapest Blue stock he had obtained and it is sad that his attempts to improve on this will not now come to fruition. In spite of all of his success he was a most unassuming person. He will be sadly missed. I hope others will be able to write more fully on his achievements.

The following was sent by John Sanders
Members who were not at the May meeting together with other national exhibitors will be very saddened and surprised to learn that Cyril Dart died suddenly in the earlier part of this month. A very regular member at our monthly meetings who supported almost all of our monthly plant competitions with considerable success. He has previously presented a lecture to our Group on his methods of cultivation - a modest and generous colleague.

His success was further exemplified at many of the National AGS Shows; he was a regular winner and had been awarded the highest accolade of ‘Best Plant in Show' - namely the Farrer Medal on at least two occasions.

Amongst his Farrer Medal plants are included a very large pan of Iris ‘Katherine Hodgkin' and a gi-normous Draba longisilliqua. Expertly grown and expertly presented – very well done Cyril.

A message of sympathy was sent to Gwen and her family on behalf of the Group and several members attended the funeral service on 21st May at Taunton Deane Crematorium.

Any donations in Cyril's memory may be directed to the British Heart Foundation.

Richard Horswood
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