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Whidbey Island Landscapes


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Northwest Flower and Garden Show, 2014

I’m just back from the show.  The gardens seem to have bounded back to their pre-recession glory – real hardscape materials – iron, wood, stone, rather than the theater set like stagings of recent shows.  Lots of water and some stunning art pieces. Some beautiful fences and innovative gates.  If you go make several trips around the display gardens and in different directions.  Also – get to the show early for parking!

Notably missing this year was the gate competition.  Also HUGELY disappointing this year was the children’s garden or lack thereof.  Last year’s garden was fabulous and seemed to be based on a Swiss Family Robinson theme – – soil to dig around in, vegetables (or was that the year before?), plants, tools, croquet, a gazebo, dress-up clothes, a boat, treasure chest and children’s bands.  Take a hint, horticulture industry.  We’ll be a dying breed and the show will be no more unless we find a way to nurture and sustain the interest of young families and their children.

The Art of Upcycling Display Garden - love that repurposed zigzag fence at the back.

The Art of Upcycling Display Garden – love that repurposed zigzag fence at the back.

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Fragrant edgeworthia was used in many gardens, but this one set the pale yellow flowers off to best effect. Nature Perfect (?) Display Garden

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Corten steel planters by MOD studio in the ART-itecture for Urban Wildlife Display garden.

by clarkworks of Portland

by clarkworks of Portland

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pergola with log posts in The Garden of Artful Delight Display garden

pergola with log posts in The Garden of Artful Delight Display garden

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You had me at “tweet”

Time for new gear?

Time for new gear?

As many times as I have attended the Northwest Flower and Garden Show, you’d think I’d be jaded.  But the minute I walk in and smell those forced flowers and hear the taped bird song, my disbelief is suspended.  I have been rather snobby over the years and spent most of my time in the gardens and seminars.  I’m usually not a fan of purchasing plants at the show that I need to somehow haul back out to the parking garage and bring home to protect from several more weeks of possible winter cold.  I’m also highly skeptical of what the Mr. calls “Slice ‘em and Dice ‘em” gadgets.  I do need a new kneeling pad, no?

This year I decided to look at the exhibitor list (see http://www.gardenshow.com/the-show/exhibitor-list/) and make a list of the vendors and organizations I’d like to check out – both for clients and myself.    I will, of course, stop and say hello to my fellow islanders:  Chocolate Flower Farm, Bob Bowling Rustics and Windfield Designs who designed and built the trellis we have in our entry garden.  Is Dean Tile and Design there this year?     And I can never, ever have too many gardening books, so I’ll check out Flora and Fauna Books and the University Bookstore booth.

And CONGRATULATIONS to my friend Vanca Lumsden, www.alberustics.com and her partner Judith Jones, www.fancyfronds.com for winning a gold medal for their garden “The Art of Upcycling.”

 

 

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