It is that time of the year when all of my peers know…I will mentally return in the Fall. Why – because the Philadelphia Flower Show is my annual kick-off to all things gardening. Not that my dreams of beautiful gardens ever stop, not that I ever stop seeking all things beautiful and I definitely do not stop reading about gardens, gardening and garden travel – NO WAY!!! It just seems like no matter the winter weather, no matter what else is going on in this world, when I return from the Philadelphia flower Show, all is right with my world.This year, it is even more special. This year there is a party happening in Philadelphia at the Philadelphia Flower Show – the oldest Horticultural event in America. It is the Centennial Celebration of Our National Park Service. This year’s theme is “Explore America”. As a self-proclaimed Garden Explorer, I can only imagine that my appetite for experiencing all that our National Park Service has to offer will be increased by the information and displays I am hoping to see. The Philadelphia Flower Show has been THE Spring event in the United States since 1829…now that is a long time!!! With a different theme every year, this show tickle’s the hearts and mind of avid gardeners and horticulturists worldwide. Among the many extravagant displays that inspire, there are always new plants and techniques to share as well as the flower design competition (one of my favorite attractions). Each designer has to use whatever flowers, twigs, stems are provided to make a fantabulous arrangement. I view this as the Olympics of the Philadelphia Flower Show, as I am always gritting my teeth or clenching the seat to see what the Designers can come up with. YES – it is that exciting!!!
There is so much to do and this year I am looking forward to going to Butterflies Live. Imagine entering a room with over 1,000 butterflies that I can feed and admire their beauty. For a mere $3.00 (separate ticket), it will be the perfect place to pause. This room has been engineered to imitate the perfect environment for our little friends. I can’t wait!!! There is also a Make and Take Room. I remember making this little chapeau about two years ago. I had such a great time picking through the offerings of ribbons, silk flowers, and assorted trims to make it truly mine!!! This year I am not sure if I will do another hat or a terrarium!!!
There are always seminars offered that cover a broad range of topics. I would love to plan on catching the Easy Succulent Bouquet demonstration with Evelyn Alemanni, author of Succulent Bouquet. Succulents are all the rage now that xeriscaping is necessary due to climactic surprises, known as climate change. I would also like to attend the session on Communities and Parks: Connecting for Prosperity with Donna Bedwell -I am quite curious on her thoughts. There is more, but I will have to gauge my time as there will be much to see and I have got to remember to keep an eye on my heart rate. Every display is an expression of one person’s vision of all things beautiful and between being courteous to fellow horticultural aficionados, Senior Citizens, and tourists, it is best to keep it moving at the displays and double back if it is something I really want to see.
Speaking of which…The Philadelphia Flower Show website comes with a list of Survival Tips, check here. That is correct, if you really want to enjoy this show there are a few guidelines to remember like wear layers, wear comfortable shoes, take plenty of photos and take notes. I like to say record good notes with a pen/pencil and paper. There is nothing worse than getting bumped while trying to type in notes on your electronic device, only to not be able to figure out what you typed when you get home – yes this has happened to me!!! All those letters can sometimes make no sense at all when trying to match it up with the blurred photo. It can be a madhouse…albeit a colorful one!! Then there is the shopping…..I just can’t tell you enough about the shopping!!! In fact, I won’t. I will tell you that the Marketplace has simply gorgeous items from seeds, jewelry, books, plants to the newest and latest equipment…..all quite worth the asking show price. There are deals to be had!!!!!
With free wine tastings, a beer garden, and other food offerings to choose from, it is a full day or two of horticultural immersion. I understand there is a Bison Burger that is quite tasty…I have a date with the Italian Restaurant in the Reading Market – it is my MUST HAVE every year. The Philadelphia Flower Show is the ultimate Spring fix…it ought to be a required event prior to digging EVERY Spring. I will be certain to share follow-up information as well as photos. If you have never been to The Philadelphia Flower Show, you simply don’t know what you are missing! For more information on the 2016 Philadelphia Flower Show, check here.
Thank you Philadelphia Horticultural Society for helping the National Park Service celebrate this Centennial Celebration of their service. Thank You National Park Service for being there to maintain our parks and curate programming of interest, so that all might enjoy!!! To find out more about the National Park Service, you can find them here National Park Service pr to find out more about the Pick Your Park program, check out Find Your Park. You just might be surprised at what you find out about the beauty that surrounds us!!!