McGredy in Japan 2002

2002 Tokyo Rose Show took place in Japan, the annual event is on a par with our famous Chelsea Show in London. The show was centered on McGredy's Roses sponsored by NHK, Japans major TV Station. Locals will recall the glorious days of acres and acres of roses blooming at the Woodside and Mullavilly fields, sadly the operation moved to New Zealand in 1972 and all those fields are now occupied with modern development.

Sam and his wife Jillian were honoured guests at the event, both appeared on National televisions numerous times, everywhere they went they were met by hundreds of people pushing to take photographs of them.

There were lots of varieties of Sam's roses on display at the show, the organizers asked him to bring along his awarded gold medals, as Sam has hundreds of these he brought a small selection, these were exhibited in burglar proof glass cages. On display at the show were huge pictures of Sam and his wife Jillian with the Queen and the late Queen Mother and Princess Margaret. The show attracted over 300.000 visitors.

The sister-in-law of the Emperor Princess Noboko officially opened the show, afterwards she had a private meeting with Sam and Jillian during which she remarked how such a nice time she spent holidaying with the late Queen Mother. The Princess spent much time with Jillian discussing the rose Sam named after his wife 'Jillian McGredy' no doubt it will take a place in the Royal Gardens of Japan.

After the major show event Sam was invited by the Governor of Gifu Province to his palatial office flanked by the inevitable TV cameras. The talks were about an alliance between the Gifu rose garden in Japan and the Hamilton rose garden in New Zealand. Afterwards Sam was asked to chair a discussion among the Pacific area gardens.

Who knows, apart from Tanaghmore Gardens perhaps our City fathers might see their way of planting a mass of Portadowns McGredy Roses in the centre of our town! If they can do it in Japan, America, Australia and throughout Europe why not Portadown!

Princess Noboko cut the ribbon to open the show, here she is talking with Sam.


Sam  with his wife Jillian and Suzuki-san, Japan's major rose-breeder.

The rose 'Jillian McGredy'

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Sam McGredy Royal Nurseries Portadown P2

Opening Day of Derriaghy Garden Centre

History of Sam McGredy Nursery

Sam McGredy Show Teams

McGredy's  1950-1964

McGredy Football Team 1966

Sam Carved in Wood!

McGredy Roses 1906

McGredy in Japan 2002

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