One of the most important topics covered at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show is our seminar category number five, called Simple Sustainability: Practicing Permaculture and Organic Gardening. If you’re looking for expert resources in fertilizers, resourceful gardening, and pesticides, look no further.
Jessi Bloom & Dave Boehnlein have just release a new book titled Practical Permaculture for Home Landscapes, Your Community, and the Whole Earth (Timber Press, $24.95). Combining an ecological expert and a permaculture expert will net you this amazing seminar. And yes, they will be signing their new book after!
With over twenty years experience on plant and insect testing, Doctor Jeff Gillman will use his research from Fine Gardening to tell you which home remedies actually work, and which are just fads.
C.L. Fornari will provide a down-and-dirty talk to help gardeners sort through the gardening folklore passed through the ages (and how new research could change those) and hype surrounding plants, practices and products.
Many gardeners learn about gardening the old-fashioned way — sharing tales with fellow gardeners. Countless myths persist, and not all are good garden practice. Find out what you should and shouldn’t be doing to maintain a healthy organic garden. Our myth-busters will share which organic gardening methods are good or bad, and why. Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott will give you the dirt on mulches and soil amendments; C.L. Fornari shares plant-specific myths, and Dr. Jeff Gillman sheds light on fertilizers and pesticides.
It may seem easy to create spring, but some attendees of the Northwest Flower & Garden Show don’t realize just how much hard work goes into the full scale display gardens. Planning begins eight months prior. Along with many forms and deadlines to worry about, some plants are forced into bloom early to give that magical effect of Spring in February. Let’s just say nature doesn’t always cooperate. Another huge thing is all of these full scale gardens must be built in approximately 72 hours and torn down in 36 hours. All at the same time. Crazy, right?
And somehow they all manage to look amazing.
Here’s a look at three more of our 2015 Display Gardens.
Oh boy, do I love an Italian themed garden. Dakara Landscape Design is creating an Italian grotto for a hideaway romantic garden. The plant material will be Mediterranean, yet still able to survive the Pacific Northwest climate. It will be a small, colorful space with a water feature and sitting areas. Let the love bloom!
A ‘Bi-O-Cycle’ Built for Two
Here’s an idea… use ponds as an art piece! Evergreen Landscaping & Ponds is coming back for their second Northwest Flower & Garden Show using two ponds in the shape of bicycle wheels and hearts. The ponds will include running waterfalls while the “bicycle frame” is created with natural tree branches. Tree stumps, ferns, ground covers, flowers and moss will surround the ponds to create a mature look.
The Root of True Romance
Beautiful Chaos: Love, Art, Nature
Elandan Gardens has designed at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show for many, many years. Every garden they produce has a distinct style: natural and grand. This year’s garden will be no different. A waterfall among large granite boulders, native plants, recycled wood, and a sculpted bench for sitting under a snag will set the lovely scene. There’s also a “pool of red tulips,” just in time for Valentine’s Day. Nature is the root of true romance in this garden.
Get inspired this year by our full scale Display Gardens. You can walk up to every garden to see, smell, and touch away. Get personal with the plants. All it takes is a ticket in! -Courtney
When I ask people what their favorite part of the Northwest Flower & Garden Show is, the most common response I get is “the pretty Display Gardens in full bloom!” Yes, we have a huge selection of exhibitors, floral displays and noteworthy seminars. But there’s nothing quite like walking into the darkened garden floor with the distant sound of birds and water, the smell of flowers in bloom, and the warmth of the garden lights.
This year, we will have a grand total of 23 Display Gardens, all following our theme of “Romance Blossoms.” Here’s your introduction to a few of the gardens you will see at this year.
“Picture Yourself on Azalea Way”
Since the very first year of the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, the Washington Park Arboretum has created Display Gardens representative of the Arboretum itself. If you’ve ever been to the Arboretum, you’d know it’s a place where romantic settings are plenty.
Picture walking among colorful azaleas, cherry trees, bulbs, and more. Surrounding plants will be Pacific Northwest friendly while the garden border will be created with reclaimed wood right from the Arboretum. An exciting feature is a photo opportunity right in the garden! Step into the scene while friends and family take your photo in front of cut-out dress forms. Upload them to your favorite social media using the hashtag #onazaleaway. Tag the Northwest Flower & Garden Show (@NWFGS/#NWFGS), and we can share your photo too!
Over the Moon
Did you know the Latin word for moon, “luna,” is sometimes related to the word lunatic? You hear about people turning into wolves, but it’s often thought people can become crazy in love from the moon. The Association of Professional Landscape Designers of Washington (APLDWA) is creating a night garden based on this premise, moon included. White birches, yellow and orange blooms, a lovely pavilion, a hammock, an overflowing pool… this garden is the perfect recipe for love.
Integrated in front of the Display Garden is a table where APLDWA is offering free 20 minute design consultations. This is a fantastic opportunity to get a professional opinion on your own yard, especially considering all the ideas and plants you may pick up at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show!
Check back here on the Garden Show Blog for more breathtaking displays we will have at the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show. All you need is a ticket to see, touch, and smell spring a few months early.
This post first appeared as a guest post on Ravenna Garden’s Blog.
The Northwest Flower & Garden Show provides imagination and inspiration with its magnificent showcase of gardens big and small, over 110 free seminars, a huge line-up of exhibitors in the Marketplace and more… February 11-15, 2015 at the Washington State Convention Center. “Romance Blossoms” is the theme throughout this BIG event and there’s plenty to see and do. Here are some tips.
Before you arrive:
- Visit the website. Gardenshow.com is THE go-to resource for planning your visit. Get a sneak preview here, including seminar topics and times. And follow the show updates on gardenshowblog.com and @NWFGS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
- Buy tickets now. Purchase your tickets in advance for added value: adult $17 Early bird discount tickets (reg. $22) are available up to February 10th.
- Check the seminar schedule. Whether you have a green thumb or are a “newbie,” the Show offers over 110 seminars presented by a line-up of top-tier experts, all free with admission to the show. It’s a great way to jump-start your gardening experiences and learn about trends that not only beautify, but are practical too.
When you arrive:
- Bring a camera. Top Garden Creators are embracing the Show’s theme—and there will be more eye-poppingcolor than ever. The amazing collection of 23 marquee display gardens will feature upwards of 50% more flowers in bloom! These gems are not only stunning to admire, but also full of take-home ideas. There’s also the gorgeous floral competition to greet you right when you enter the Show.
- Visit the expansive Marketplace. The bustling Marketplace is a shopping destination with over 350 exhibitors offering the hottest new tools and other gardening gear, plants, and unique art for the home and garden. The popular ‘Vintage Garden Market’ returns with repurposed and “shabby-chic” treasures for the garden and home.
- Discover the exciting daily activites. A new feature this year is “Garden Wars,” an event benefitting local charities. Inspired by reality-based competitions, it takes place from 1-3 pm each day in the North Hall. Joe Lamp’l, host of the PBS series Growing a Greener World® will guide your favorite news anchors on teams from KIRO-TV, KING-TV, KOMO-TV, KCPQ-TV, and Click 98.9 FM and Warm 106.9 FM as they create 10’x10’ gardens.
We could talk about all the amazing things you’ll see, the new plants you’ll discover, and the unique memories you’ll make at the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show. But it’s easier to find out for yourself. See you there! -Courtney
Category number four of the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show seminar series is one of the most up and coming, simply because sometimes garden space is a rare commodity. Properties are shrinking, while more people have only balconies as their outdoor area.
Want to add a Japanese maple into your small garden? Barry Hoffer will tell you the best soil conditions, containers, and year-round care.
Hydroponics can be very confusing, but even if you have limited space you can grow significant fruits, veggies, and more! Greg Hendrick can show you how.
Our Wednesday Gardening 101 will be on Small Space Solutions!
Susan Morrison shares before-and-after makeovers and simple, budget-friendly touches. Donna Balzer will show you how to transform garden waste spaces into garden growing areas — maximizing your harvest with pop-up gardens. And Lucy Hardiman shows how you can fool the eye with color, making less seem more. Each short seminar will be packed with big ideas, so don’t miss them.
Just because you don’t have acres and acres doesn’t mean you’re left out. Find ways around to beautify your balcony, porch, or even just the inside of your apartment. Make sure to check out the full 2015 seminar schedule, and buy tickets because these seminars are all FREE with your Northwest Flower & Garden Show ticket! -Courtney
We have great news for all current Canadian residents. If you’re thinking about attending the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show, exclusive packages have been arranged to help you make the most of the Show. Plus, we offer FREE USDA plant inspection for any plants you may purchase at the Show!
For the travelers out there, our hotel partner Crowne Plaza Downtown Seattle is offering discounted rates ALONG with:
- a FREE two-day pass to the Show per person!
- 50% off valet parking
- complimentary breakfast per person per night
- FREE WiFi
- 20% off all food and beverage (excluding alcohol)
To get this amazing package, there are a few things to note. You MUST book this reservation online, as you will not get these rates by calling the hotel directly. You also must have a valid Canadian ID upon hotel check-in to get your special rate. Room rates are displayed as price per night and all rates include taxes.
Clipper Vacations also provides great deals on transportation and overnight stays for the Show. Trips are available from Vancouver B.C. to Seattle via Amtrak Cascades, and Victoria B.C. to Seattle on the Victorian Clipper. These bundles include round-trip tickets, 2 nights’ accommodations in Seattle, one day admission to the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, and all taxes.
Free Plant Inspection
Our huge Plant Market will tempt you in many ways, so don’t hold back just because you are traveling across the border! We offer FREE Washington State Department of Agriculture Phytosanitary Inspection Certification if you buy any plants at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show! All nursery vendors selling plants at the Garden Show have been pre-certified by the WA State Department of Agriculture. After you have purchased your plants, take them to Booth #2419. Complete the required forms, and once the plants have been inspected by the WSDA team you can pick them up.
When you do cross the border, show the customs agent your completed inspection forms. And if you are traveling with friends all in the same vehicle or on a bus tour, you can list all your plants together on one form to make it easier.
We want to accommodate you with the best, so make sure to reserve your hotel and travel packages as soon as possible to guarantee your ideal rate and dates. Also, don’t hesitate to use our plant inspection team… it’s a free service compliments of the Northwest Flower & Garden Show. That’s what neighbors are for, right? Enjoy your trip in the USA! -Courtney
Our third seminar category is “Solving Design Challenges With Style: Artistic Inspiration For Every Garden.” This might be the most popular, simply because design challenges are NOT uncommon in most yards. Whether you have a specific challenge, or just want more from your garden… we have the seminars for you.
Garden design basics:
- Vampires? Yes, Susan Morrison will use classic movie monsters and creatures of the night for her inspiration. But it’s really about creating a garden that shines in the evening and looks good in any season.
- 2015 Show Judge Troy B. Marden will demonstrate excellent design techniques in the garden. As he says in his seminar description… “Great design is great design, no matter where you garden.”
- The crucial design technique of layering plants in the garden will be brought to life in David Culp’s seminar “The Layered Garden: Design Lessons for Year-Round Beauty.”
- Speaker Claire T. Jones will teach the art of ‘slow landscaping,’ a process that is done with “planning, thought, and sustainability.” The best gardens aren’t created overnight, you know!
Specific design challenges:
- How do two garden experts garden together? Find out when Ciscoe Morris and his wife Mary talk on February 14th (how appropriate!).
- If you’re struggling with a disability, an accident, or even your age, Shirley Sidell can give tips on how to garden successfully with these.
- Want to get rid of your lawn, or need help with your hellstrip? Evelyn Hadden can share her expertise on both of these topics in the times listed above.
How to add personal touches to your garden:
- Cultivating Garden Style is the new hit by author Rochelle Greayer. This seminar can help you bring your personal style into the garden. Take a look at your own tastes outside of the garden, and find how to translate them into it!
- Have you ever wanted to make your own herbal spa products? Herb Lovers Spa Book author Sue Goetz will demonstrate every step of the process; from planting the herbs to creating your own natural spa products.
- Linda Engstrom, FAPLD & 2015 Show Judge, will show how to add finishing hardscaping touches to your garden like gates, pergolas, waterfalls, sculptures, and more.
- Sometimes a little inspiration is all you need. Michelle Gervais, senior editor at Fine Gardening, will show off the “Garden Photo of the Day” blog, which includes real ideas from gardens around the country.
- You can enhance the design of your garden with sculpture, artifacts, and found objects. You can artfully incorporate these things with speaker Lucy Hardiman showing you how.
Stopping in on one of these seminars is like getting a free garden design consultation. It’s especially so because these expert seminars are all FREE with entry to the Northwest Flower & Garden Show.
Save money, and buy your tickets now! -Courtney
Yes, the pink candy boxes have arrived in stores! Cue red hearts, bows, and flowers… It’s time to start planning what you’re going to do for that special day. We have a few ideas here at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show that will make your February 14th the best ever.
1. Surprise the sweetheart with tickets to the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show
Duh! What could be more romantic than spending the day surrounded by flowering plants, soft bird noises in the distance, and the amazing smell of bulbs in bloom? Pretty much nothing. Escape to the Show and give more than just a box of chocolates to the lover. Bonus: if you buy tickets before you get to the Show, you can save $5 per ticket.
2. Take them to the free seminars at the Show
With over 110 to choose from, you’re bound to find some topics to interest you. Northwest gardening, small spaces, sustainability, hands on demonstrations at the DIY Stage… we have it all. There are some Valentines Day must see seminars. Couple Ciscoe and Mary Morris are speaking together on “Separate Beds: Maintain a Beautiful Garden Along with Your Marriage.” Then, stop in for Helen Yoest’s “Plants With Benefits: An Uninhibited Guide to Aphrodisiac Plants.” It’s exactly what you’re thinking.
3. Grab a bouquet of fresh flowers
Well it wouldn’t be Valentines Day without a flower bouquet! Choose from the freshest tulips, daffodils, and many others at our fresh flowers booth located on the Skybridge.
4. Turn it in to an overnight adventure
Spend a day at the Show enjoying the scenery, then make a night of it in a glamorous downtown Seattle hotel. We’ve partnered up with multiple hotels to bring you exclusive rates and discounts. Or, take a chance and enter our Grand Prize Sweepstakes before the end of January to win similar amazing amenities.
5. Propose to your sweetheart at the Show
Okay, this may be a little out there, but seriously. See number one above. The Northwest Flower & Garden Show is the most romantic place in Seattle. The theme of the Show this year is “Romance Blossoms,” so you can bet there’s going to be gorgeous displays waiting for you two. Plus, we may be able to get you in an actual Display Garden… Contact us, yeah?
6. Peruse over 350 exhibitors to get the right gift
Not sure what the perfect gift is? Browse the exhibitors and have your significant other pick something for themselves! Plants, tools, art, metalworking, and most anything from the vintage market will make a fabulous gift. Browse our Pinterest for a taste of what the exhibitors will have.
7. Enjoy the exclusive Opening Night Party
One of the highlights for local gardeners is the annual Opening Night Party, held on Tuesday, February 10th, from 5 pm – 9 pm, hosted by the Arboretum Foundation. Even though it will be a few days early, it’s a guaranteed festive evening with delicious food, fine wines, live music and a splendid silent auction filled with vacation getaways, collectible wines, fun experiences, and much more.
So there you go. If you’re feeling traditional or non-traditional, you’ll have plenty to wow your significant other at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show. Don’t forget to take a couple photos with our “Succulent Love” artpiece in the South Lobby! -Courtney