Flowers on ice ahead of annual lilium show

VERA Masciantonio's fridge isn't full of festive leftovers - it's full of flowers.

The president of the Northern Tasmanian Lilium Society has been preserving the blooms since many of her plants flowered four weeks ago, well ahead of this weekend's annual lilium show.

The rest have refused to flower in time for the event, despite every encouragement, including standing pots in hot water.

Unpredictable weather has wreaked havoc for growers, with high temperatures early in summer causing some plants to flower earlier than usual, and subsequent rain and cold winds preventing others, or producing deformed flowers.

"It's just the weather - we can't do much about it," Mrs Masciantonio said.

Lily lovers can enjoy the blooms tomorrow and Sunday at St Ailbe's Hall in Margaret Street, Launceston.

Judges will be looking for blooms that are evenly spaced, colour-rich and with petals free of pollen.

Patrons can also receive advice on growing, propagating and pollinating liliums.

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