The London Horticultural Show (Guide)

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Join the crowds drifting towards Watchmaker's Hill to see the botanical wonders of the Neath

The London Horticultural Show is London's summer festival in 2023. It commenced on July 31th and completed on August 21st.

Event qualities[edit]

Currently active qualities[edit]


Advancing the story-line up past soliciting for help will grant the following boon:

London's Many Hands

Several airships can be picked and applied as a boon:

Command of an Obliterator-class Airship

Command of a Vigilant-class Airship

Command of a Sparrow-class Airship

Previously active qualities[edit]


Currently Active[edit]

Station IX[edit]

Formerly the University Cricket Field

At Station IX (Provisional), you can take actions to increase the Disposition of the Air Fleet. Some options cost resources, one costs a favour, and some just cost actions, but they all reward Service to London. They also all increase your Contributions to the Fleet, which allows you to Take on a Command at 10, unlocking Reconnaissance Flights.

Station IX
Option Cost Reward Net Service World Quality Changes Requirements
Help the Admiralty Prepare N/A 50-612 Service (Scaling)
Help the Horticultural Society donate an indispensable amount to the war effort 1 x The Coffers of the Horticultural Society 50-646 Service (Scaling) -
Supply the Admiralty with provisions 1 x Crate of Incorruptible Biscuits 932 Service 692 Service
Provide the Admiralty with powder and ballast 1 x Perfumed Gunpowder 646 Service 396 Service
Call in favours from the Docks 1 x Favours: The Docks 1000 Service 313 Service

Reconnaissance Flights[edit]

Once you have a Command, you can choose an Airship. Your choice of airships determines your Aerial Prowess and Aerial Armament, which will be used for challenges on flights.

Airship Choices
Option Aerial Prowess Aerial Armament
The Sparrow Class 100 50
The Vigilant Class 75 75
The Obliterator Class 50 100

At the Command of an Airship[edit]

Once you have chosen your airship, you can launch it at station IX with Engage in a Reconnaissance Flight and take to the air to scout out the roof.

There are two states to manage: No Danger, and 'Under Attack, and two menaces to watch out for:

If either of these hits 8, you will have to make an emergency landing, and may take wounds. Turning back ends the excursion immediately, but cannot be done while you are under attack.

The difficulty for the various checks will increase the further away from the station you go.

At the Command of an Airship
No Danger
Option Challenge Pass Failure
Employ speed Aerial Prowess
Employ stealth
Go looking for trouble At least
Return to base N/A
Under Attack
A success can sometimes lose your attacker.
Option Challenge Pass Failure
Stay at range and return fire
Engage the enemy directly Aerial Armament
Evade their attacks Aerial Prowess
Sighting the Castles
Option Req Reward
Sight one of the castles on the roof Far Afield from Station IX 30/55/80/105
Menaces Hit 8
Option Challenge Pass Failure
Luck 50%
Aerial Prowess

Once you return back, you will need to turn in your surveys with Report your observations before you are allowed to fly again. This will gain you (10 * Surveys + 1250 * Sightings) x Service to London.


The Sparrow-class is the best airship option, as outside of combat there are only Aerial Prowess checks and in combat the available Prowess and Armament checks are of equal difficulty (and harder than the non-combat checks, so it's better to avoid combat).

When traveling, for all but early game characters with low Shadowy, the best option (regardless of airship class) is always Employ stealth, since the Prowess check is easier. The optimal strategy with the Sparrow-class, with any values of Shadowy and Watchful, is to keep going until you hit the third Sighting of a Landmark on the Roof and then turn back, since at that point the chance of entering combat becomes significant, and combat has harder checks, with greater likelihood of failing and making less progress per action. For characters flying non-Sparrow-class airships, it generally makes sense to turn back after the second Landmark instead, though Vigilant pilots with 250+ Shadowy may reasonably go for 3.

If you do enter combat, with the Sparrow-class the best option is to Evade their attacks until you get out of combat.

Previous Activities[edit]

Previous activities can be done as long as the player does not advance their war effort past the required stage.

Plant Growing[edit]

Come grow plants in the greenhouse and raise your Horticultural Prestige.

Horticultural Show promo.png

In the Glasshouse is where the plant-growing activities are located. First you select a plant from options with varying levels of Horticultural Difficulty. This determines the challenge difficulty as well as the payout at the end. Each action will increase Growing a Prized Plant, until it reaches 8, at which point you Present your plant to the judges, which will reward you with Horticultural Prestige, which will be used to turn in for rewards. As well as growing your plant, each action will also increase Advancing the Horticultural Arts, which will unlock a new plant and a plant-growing option.

Your choice of plant determines your Horticultural Difficulty, but it also determines your Growing in your Care, Light Preference: and Growing in your Care, Classification:, which unlock certain growing options.

Plant Choices
Option Requirements Light Preference Classification Difficulty Prestige
'Purple Maiden' lily-caps Dark Fungi 20 491
A cutting from your Singular Plant Attending to the Needs of a Singular Plant 10 Shaded Plantae 50 1617
'Marigold Madness' lily-caps Dark Fungi 70 2504
Peppercaps, hopefully prize-winning Hand-picked Peppercaps 1 Dark Fungi 100 3981
'Violant wing' lily-caps Advancing the Horticultural Arts 100000 Dark Fungi 150 6744
'Golden screamer' mandrakes Direct Sunlight Plantae 200 9803
Cautionary Orchids Advancing the Horticultural Arts 1000000

The Horticultural Prestige given when you present your plant scales with its Horticultural Difficulty, with the formula .

Different options are available based on your level of Growing a Prized Plant, and they have their own requirements and challenges, but they all give 2 CP of Growing a Prized Plant on success.

Plant Growing
Option Growing a Prized Plant Challenge[1] Requirements
Divine its needs 1-4 Broad Watchful
Prepare the soil 1-4 Broad Shadowy
Secure vital nutrition for your precious plant 2-5 Broad Persuasive
Sing to it 3-6 Broad Persuasive
Give it some artificial light 4-7 Broad Watchful Sunlight preference, 10x Khaganian Lightbulb (the lightbulbs will not be used)
Let it rest in a cool, dark place 4-7 Broad Shadowy Dark preference
Employ forbidden horticultural techniques 6-7 Narrow Artisan of the Red Science Betrayer of Measures
Dose it with a very gentle application of toxins 6-7 Narrow Kataleptic Toxicology , unknown difficulty Advancing the Horticultural Arts 10000000
Make a legalistic argument about your competition's eligibility 7 Broad Persuasive, unknown difficulty

Narrow Respectable, unknown difficulty

Plantae classification
Cajole the judges 7 Broad Persuasive
  1. All Broad challenges have difficulty equal to Horticultural Difficulty, unless stated otherwise.

Plead for Assistance[edit]

You can ask several different people for assistance in the war against the starved men.

London's Ruin Cards[edit]

You can help lower London's Ruin by playing opportunity cards created by the event. These cards are unlocked at different levels of Ruin, and can be permanently dimissed at the cost of accepting a Burden.

Card (Unlock) Burden Action Results
A Stalwart Commitment to Helping:
+5 London's Ruin
A Stalwart Commitment to Helping:
Bridge the span
A Fierce Commitment to London's Defence:
Buttress the ceiling
A Fierce Commitment to London's Defence:

Tending London's Wounds[edit]

You can help with relief efforts in the storylet Tending London's Wounds. All options therein increase Service to London and decrease London's Ruin by different amounts, and increase Relief Efforts by 1. Some options were opened by the full propagation of certain clues. These will be denoted by the links to the associated qualities in the Requirements section.

Tending London's Wounds
Option Cost Reward Net Service World Quality Changes Requirements
Join a search party None. 100 Service -30 Ruin
Assemble a repair crew 250 Bottle of Greyfields 1882, 3 Partial Map 1550 Service 300 Service -50 Ruin
Donate food to Jenny's kitchen 5 Crate of Incorruptible Biscuits 1680 Service 430 Service -50 Ruin
Tend to the wounded 90 Silk Scrap, 1 F.F. Gebrandt's Tincture of Vigour 300 Service 200 Service -8 Ruin Knowledge Fully Disseminated 5
Organise local communities 10 Romantic Notion, 2 Strong-Backed Labour 1050 Service 450 Service -48 Ruin Factional Forms
Provide comfort and succour None, Mithridacy 11 challenge 560 Service -15 Ruin Weaknesses of the Enemy 2
Evacuate citizens to safer locales None. 200 Service -10 Ruin Stonefall
Help to decode the scratchy script of the Roof 100 Nodule of Deep Amber, 3 Volume of Collated Research, 50 Maniac's Prayer 1750 Service 400 Service -175 Ruin Motivations of the Enemy 2
Offer refugees temporary sanctuary in Parabola 10 Memory of Light, 1 Glass Gazette 1350 Service 560 Service -97 Ruin Pendulum Dreams, Access to a Parabolan Base-Camp

Fighting London's War[edit]

You can help fight the Starved Men in the storylet Fighting London's War. All options therein increase Service to London, London's Ruin, and The Defence of London by different amounts. All options with challenges increase Wounds or Nightmares on failure. Some options were opened by the full propagation of certain clues. These will be denoted by the links to the associated qualities in the Requirements section.

Fighting London's War
Option Challenge Success Results Failure Results Requirements
Erect barricades None. 100 Service, +3 Ruin, +3 Defence
Lead a skirmish Dangerous 150 420 Service, +5 Ruin, +5 Defence 70 Service, +5 Ruin, +2 CP Wounds
Call in gunnery support Zeefaring 11 520 Service, +7 Ruin, +7 Defence 50 Service, +7 Ruin, +2 CP Wounds
Lay a botanical trap for the Starved Men None. 5000 Service, +7 Ruin, +60 Defence, unique Accomplishment Requires Attending to the Needs of a Singular Plant 19, can only be done once.
Clear the city of amber None. 200 Service, +3 Ruin, +10 Defence Metamorphic Catalysts
Flank the enemy by moving troops through the glass Glasswork 7 450 Service, +5 Ruin, +20 Defence +5 Ruin, +4 CP Nightmares Knowledge Fully Disseminated 10
Educate fighters on Starved anatomy Monstrous Anatomy 11 560 Service, +7 Ruin, +30 Defence +7 Ruin, +2 CP Nightmares Elastic Limits
Train Unfinished Men to fight None. 200 Service, +3 Ruin, +30 Defence A Supply of Soldiers
Offer a rousing speech Persuasive 150 450 Service, +5 Ruin, +40 Defence +5 Ruin, +2 CP Nightmares Weaknesses of the Enemy 3
Modify some recruits with the Shapeling Arts Shapeling Arts 11 600 Service, +7 Ruin, +50 Defence +7 Ruin, +2 CP Nightmares Ecstasies of Change

Searching for clues:[edit]

We must search for clues as to how to defeat the starved men, and what they want.

  • Hidden behind closed doors. - Mrs Chapman's Boarding House, Needs backstage 5
  • !kathakathoti! - Rubbery Men Card, requires one favour
  • Among ruins. - Forgotten Quarter, New expedition
  • Among the lights and laughter. - Mrs. Plenty's Festival - Most Educational Anatomy Exibition
  • Beneath the loam. - Underclay, 100 convincing falsehoods
  • At the tip of a fallen temple. - Godfall, end of a pilgrimage
  • Deep in memory – if you have the right past. - Waswood in Lightfingers
  • Downstairs. - Helicon House with Admiralty Lacky - Below Stairs, Shapeling Studies 1, Fitting in 5
  • In dreams. - In the Viric Jungle, if Cats or Snakes are ascendant
  • Beneath justice. - Light in Exile, Diving at Evenlode
  • Deep, and down. - Flute Street (FATE locked)
  • Up. - Upwards (FATE locked)
  • Forgotten. - Nadir - new card “A Reservoir of Forgotten Shapes”
  • In a time yet to come. - Irem - A neon Future, needs 20 neo-echoes (Ensure that you collect them in A Near Future)
  • Where oars bend to water. - Slow Boat (opp card)”Recall pitched battle against the Starved Men” (Dying)
  • Through gunsmoke and fire. - Zee - The Prophet's Call - Hear the name of something lost and misshapen (Piracy)
  • Somewhere meteorological - The weather At Last card has a new option if you’ve done Written in the Glim (FATE locked)
  • At the frontiers of knowledge. - Laboratory - NEW RESEARCH EXPERIMENT. Requires 550 research, has Shapeling Focus
  • Under moonish light - Port Cecil - The Perigee of Silver (Requires Evolution (Naturalist’s Map))
  • Somewhere fungal - Mangrove College, complete 7 expeditions and talk to the Hintershroom (FATE locked)



A Hard-Earned Knack for Repair (Affiliation)

The Rank of Flight Captain (Affiliation)

Honorary Membership in the London Horticultural Society (Affiliation)

The Final Resting Place of an Old Friend (Affiliation)

Lingering Radiance (Boon)

London's Many Hands (Boon)

Vanity Qualities[edit]

  • Starved Intelligencer: - Increases by turning in clues.
    • Caps out at 10 with The Seven-Fingered Right Hand of the Commodore
  • Ambassador of Last Resort: - Increases by seeking out allies for London after the initial war is won.
    • Caps out at 6 (all six factions called) with an Emissary Exigent
    • Grants access to the titles 'Ambassador' (any level) and 'Emissary' (level 6)
  • A Commissioned Airship: - A memento of your airship, both hard won and hard lost.

The Admiration of Station IX[edit]

You can Perform above and beyond in the field of duty on Station IX (Provisional) if you have 20000 x Service to London and an airship, you can get The Admiration of Station IX which promises a unique item at the end of the event. That item being The Final Resting Place of an Old Friend

Materials and Materiel[edit]

This allows you to spend Service to London on various rewards. It is valued 1:1 with Penny. Some options were opened by the full propagation of certain clues. These will be denoted by the links to the associated qualities in the Requirements section.

Materials and Materiel
Choice Reward Requirements
Claim some morale-boosting wine 7250
Claim some 'morale-boosting' 'ham' 6250 1 x Tinned Ham
Claim some rejected ordnance 4450
Claim a crate of what must surely be weapons 1800
Claim a consignment of seized amber 40000 Metamorphic Catalysts
Claim a fragment of Roof-rock 31250 1 x Starstone Demark Stonefall
Claim an assortment of Starved remains 2300 A Reassuring Weakness to Cannonfire
Claim the box from Hell 4000 London's Overtures: Hell
Claim the crate of Polythremean ammunition 8000 London's Overtures: Polythreme
Claim the crate of surplus Khaganian materiel 35000 London's Overtures: Khanate

Note: If you advance past Visit the community garden, any remaining Service will be turned into Tale of Terror!! at Service/50, and any remainder will become Piece of Rostygold


The Rubbery Skull can be sold for 125 x Nightsoil of the Bazaar to the Tentacled Servant, making that option worth playing at least once. Starstone Demark and Nodule of Fecund Amber are rare items that are otherwise difficult to acquire; however, they also have limited uses and are available in the Rat Market on occasion.

Other good options for cash-out are, in descending order of profit, Claim the box from Hell, as long as The Eyes Have Them will allow, followed by Claim the crate of Polythremean ammunition, and ultimately to Claim the crate of surplus Khaganian materiel. Both Khaganian and Polythremean options take full advantage of the Rat Market to maximise their output, so be sure to hold onto them until they can be sold, preferably in bulk, see analysis below.

The options that give bones are fairly unremarkable for a player with a Railway, but they are a good source for midgame players who otherwise have difficulty accessing most of them.

Rejected Ordinance most notably gives Book of Hidden Bodies, an item otherwise fairly annoying to acquire and so is highly recommended for early and midgame players who still have yet to do most of their PoSI Item Crafting. Players past that point might still want to grab one or two anyway, just in case. Unlawful Device can be profitably offloaded at The Rat Market as well. The Lost Research Assistant is not saleable normally, but can be redeemed during A War in Spite. Overall this option is quite profitable, especially if you still haven't done a lot of Sidestreets crafting, but it requires a bit of patience for World Qualities to redeem optimally.

Aside from these, for players without access to Balmoral, the best cash-out option was Tinned Ham, which sells to the Bazaar for one echo more than it costs to acquire. For those who do have access to Balmoral, the Bottle of Fourth City Airag: Year of the Tortoise is worth quite a bit more when arbitraged as Crackling Device in the Khanate and sold to the Rat Market. Also the Bottle of Greyfields 1882 that comes with the Airag is useful for The Demi-Monde: Bohemians and A Presumptuous Little Opportunity, making this a decent cash-out even pre-Balmoral.

Other than the one-time Rubbery Skull, there is currently no efficient way to exchange Service to London for Hinterland Scrip. Players waiting for such may wish to conserve their Service in case one becomes available.

The latest cash-out options are far more profitable than the older ones:

1) Claim the box from Hell is limited to 10 uses per character. However, it is also the most profitable by far.

  • 1.7915 pennies / Service: (31250 + 5*100*10 - 420) / (5 * 4000) = 35830 pennies / 20000 Service = 1.7915.
  • Optimal conversion requires cashing out the skulls 5 at a time via a fair exchange .
  • Action cost for optimal cashing-in: 2 actions per 20000 service = 0.1 actions/1000 service.

2) Claim the crate of Polythremean ammunition is apparently unlimited and second best in profitability. Uniquely, it has two different calculations, because the optimal way to cash it out depends on if your actions are worth more or less than 3.75 Echoes.

If your actions are worth less than 3.75 Echoes apiece, you should sell the Storm-Threnodies 1 at a time, for 200 Rat-Shillings each.

  • 1.46875 pennies / Service: (500 * 1 + 5 * 2000 + 25 * 50) / 8000 = 11750 pennies / 8000 Service = 1.46875
  • 10000 / 11750 = 85% of those pennies are cashed in as Rat-Shillings.
  • Action cost for optimal cashing-in: 5 actions per 8000 service = 0.625 actions / 1000 Service.

If your actions are worth more than 3.75 Echoes apiece, you should sell them 5 at a time, for 850 Rat-Shillings per 5.

  • 1.28125 pennies / Service: (500 * 1 + 1 * 8500 + 25 * 50) / 8000 = 10250 pennies / 8000 Service = 1.28125
  • 8500 / 10250 = 82% of those pennies are cashed in as Rat-Shillings.
  • Action cost for optimal cashing-in: 1 action per 8000 service = 0.125 actions / 1000 Service.

3) Claim the crate of surplus Khaganian materiel is less profitable but more action-efficient than Polythremean ammunition.

  • At most 1.277 pennies / Service: (40000 + 375*1250/100) / 35000 = 44687.5 pennies / 35000 Service = 1.277 pennies / Service.
  • 40000/44687.5 = 89.5% of those pennies are converted into Rat-Shillings.
  • Action cost for optimal cashing-in: 4.75 actions / 35000 Service = 0.135 actions / 1000 Service.

The London Horticultural Show Awards Ceremony[edit]

This is where you finally get your rewards for the plants you spent time producing. This is nominally valued at 1E / 100 x Horticultural Prestige. All of these will award Honorary Membership in the London Horticultural Society

Awards Ceremony
Choice Reward
Accept a ribbon for 'Best in Show' 18000
Accept a ribbon for 'Hungriest Roots' 9000
Accept a ribbon for 'Most Aroma' 4500
Accept a ribbon for 'Whitest Teeth' 2250
Accept a ribbon for 'Least Threatening' 1125
Enjoy the company of your fellow horticulturists The rest of it.

Permanent Game Additions[edit]

The Horticultural Show has left a few permanent changes to London.

The Starved Embassy[edit]

A Cultural Exchange becomes available in Watchmaker's Hill. Once per week--reset with Time, the Healer--you may accompany a delegation of Londoners to the new Starved Embassy. You choose an offering to present to the Starved Men, who will give you something in return. The less valuable your offering is, the more likely you are to gain Scandal. After exchanging enough gifts, the Starved Men will present you with an Amber Ambassador's Seal.

Activity Additions[edit]

These activities became available during the clue-gathering phase, and closed after that completed, but after the conclusion of the event they have remained as permanent additions to their respective activities.