Recycling, reusing, repurposing… it’s not just a fad. It’s a way to life for some garden designers who strive to breathe a second life into an unimaginable array of ‘stuff.’ Someday perhaps our landfills will disappear, as everyone catches on and reuses their stuff in new and exciting ways in their homes and gardens.
Here are a few ideas from past Northwest Flower & Garden Show display gardens and container exhibition (now called the ‘Small Space Showcase’) that will spark your own creativity to reuse and repurpose items that might be destined for the dumpster.
(Above) Pamela Richards settled an old vintage bed into her black and white garden she created for the 2005 garden show.
In 2009 Adam Gorski Landscapes used an old white table and two fire engine red 50’s style chairs to go with the shiny red of a vintage Mustang and a red coral back maple.
Exteriorscapes planted this classic claw-foot tub, put it in front of some used windows and set it on a checkerboard pebble mosaic, with a planted chair and rug for a cozy washroom scene in the 2010 garden show.
Christianson’s Nursery always excels in creating the nostalgic look. Here their 2011 garden was reminiscent of family nurseries of yesteryear, with a barn built with old weathered wood.
Courtney Goetz of the Creative Gardener designed these gabion walls in the entry to her 2011 garden, using old wire, wine bottles and topping them with street covers.
Another scene from Courtney’s 2011 garden, where an old shipping container serves as a garden house, topped with a greenhouse made from old window doors.
DIG Floral & Garden used old crates to make the containers in their container garden at the 2011 show. We’ll never go back to boring plastic pots again.
Molbak’s created this greenhouse using vintage windows in funky colors for their 2011 container garden on the sky bridge.
More recycled materials in another garden by Pamela Richards, where she combined an old rusted screen as a backdrop that blends perfectly with the rusty antique bench.
For their 2011 container garden, Windmill Gardens planted their container garden by recycling metal containers and wood, and maybe even an old gardener!
Likewise, in 2012 Artisans Cottage brought in many kinds of repurposed items to create an old-fashioned vignette. ‘Mother Earth’ was popular with show attendees as she took a break from her gardening activities.
In 2012 Artistic Garden Concepts designed a lush garden with a romantic setting, using an old pallet with wooden legs for a candlelight dinner. Do try this at home.
Tumwater’s Black Hills High School students found use for these lovely rusted old wheels (probably made well before they were born) for their ‘Funky Junk” garden at the 2012 show.
This container garden by Ravenna Gardens shows that any old glass container can be turned into a beautiful terrarium – the ultimate easy care garden for inside or outdoors.
Even old pianos can have a new life with their top planted, as shown by the imaginative people at Sunnyside Nursery.
Lovers of all things vintage will love to know we’ll have a Vintage Garden Market at this year’s show. We’re bringing in a dozen of the top vintage/antique vendors from around the state and putting them together in the North Hall for a fabulous shabby chic ‘flea market.’
The Northwest Flower & Garden Show, to be held February 20 – 24 at the Washington State Convention Center, will feature 23 amazing show gardens plus 16 Small Space Showcase gardens. Designers are putting on their finishing touches, and you are sure to see a lot more imaginative ideas for recycling and repurposing. Don’t miss it! ~ Janet
A wise creature says, “Not to a galaxy have you gone, but in a garden are you.”
If this sounded familiar, then you are most likely a fan of Star Wars, and the convoluted (but so wise) utterances of the Grand Master Yoda. So is garden designer Gregory Smaus, CPH, owner of Native Root Designs. Native Root Designs is an all organic, 5-star Envirostar landscape contractor in Seattle. Gregory designed the 2012 garden for the Washington State Nursery & Landscape Association (WSNLA), titled “Winter’s Come & Gone – a Lullaby.”
For his show garden at the 2013 Northwest Flower & Garden Show, Gregory is drawing inspiration from the Star Wars trilogy for a garden titled “In a Garden Far, Far Away.”
But fortunately the garden is not modeled after the barren sand dunes on Tatooine. Rather it’s a rebellion of a different sort – a food rebellion. It will be an ‘edible forest garden,’ and designed to work with the natural environment, not against it.
The edible forest garden concept will be a great way for you to discover how to incorporate edibles – and an edible garden doesn’t have to be boring to be healthy. You will be able to see how to combine beautiful plants of all sizes in a way that is sustainable and can help feed your family.
Families will love the tree house perched among the forest; engaging with a forest canopy in play structures is a great way of getting young people outside and more aware of their natural world. The height and scale of the timbers will amaze you, and real trunks salvaged from timber lands will be set vertically, rising over 10 feet while supporting decks trailing with planted containers.
A path will wind from the front of the garden, rising up and over one of the decks and ending at a small, enclosed flagstone patio. A low stone wall separates the patio from the massive tree trunks that serve as supports. And a green house, nestled in the trees, will glow with a soft light, showing the bounty of food.
Over 55,000 avid gardeners will flock to the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, to be held February 20 – 24, 2013 at the Washington State Convention Center, to see 23 fully-built gardens, over 100 educational seminars, enjoy family fun, and shopping at a garden Marketplace with 350 exhibitors.
If you have never been to the show, the number one thing we hear from first-time attendees is this: “Oh my gosh, I had no idea it was this incredible.” Find out for yourself — tickets are on sale now! ~ Janet
One of the best places to test drive a new gardening book is at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, to be held February 20 – 24 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.
That’s because each of these authors is giving one or more seminars – a great way for you to see if the subject, and their latest book, is a good fit for what you need.
And of course, you can have the added bonus of getting your book autographed after the seminars. This is a rare chance to see a lot of top talent in the gardening world.
We have so many new books making their debut appearance at the show, that it will take 2 blogs to cover them all! Here’s part one, featuring Amy Stewart, Barbara Damrosch, Mary Ann Newcomer, Lorene Edwards Forkner, Paul Zimmerman, Andrew Keys, Bill Thorness and Charlie Nardozzi. Simply click on their name above for a link to their full biography and more about their upcoming seminars.
Get your tickets today, but don’t wait too long – Early Bird Tickets must be purchased before February 20. See you in the seminars! ~ Janet
If you have begun to add edible plants to your garden, there are many tricks to getting the most from your efforts. After all, you want the plants to grow well, produce in abundance, and look nice too! Then there’s the pesky problem of pests and diseases. What do you do then?
Never fear, we have some of the leading authors on edible gardening coming to our renowned seminar program at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, to be held February 20 – 24 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle. These are must-see seminars for every edible gardener!
Be sure to see Barbara Damrosch, Jessi Bloom, Graham Kerr, Colin McCrate, Donna Balzer and Bill Thorness as they each talk about various aspects of edible gardening (click on their name and you’ll find their complete bio and seminar details). Whether you’re interested in organic gardening, perennial vegetables, preventing pests, or growing cool season edibles, you’ll find great tips from these authors. And adding their books to your gardening library will mean yu can take their great advice home with you.
Make this the year you get your edible garden just right for you! To discover more seminars that will improve your gardening prowess, check out our Speakers at a Glance page. And act soon to buy your tickets – Early Bird Tickets must be purchased before February 20.
We’ve all heard the term “sustainability.” But what the heck does that mean?
To me it means living in harmony with the resources you have: air, land, water, space, plants, insects, birds, and so much more. Sustainability means practicing the Hippocratic oath of gardening: First, do no harm.
This year in our new Gardening 101 series, we have 3 top sustainable gardening experts who will show you uncomplicated ways to enhance your sustainable efforts in “Sustainable Solutions.” This is not rocket science! There are practical steps you can take to make sure you are living in harmony with your gardening resources – improving your soil, combating pesky pests naturally, and encouraging those critical pollinators.
To find more seminars just right for you, visit our “Speakers at a Glance” page on our website. Tickets for the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, which runs February 20 – 24 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle, are on sale now. ~ Janet