Philadelphia International flower show

The Sights and Scents of Spring – – The 2011 Philadelphia International Flower Show

By Bonnie Turner-Lomax

During these last weeks of winter, many of us in the Mid-Atlantic region are starting to think about warmer weather, spring and gardening. In an area recuperating from record snowstorms, cold temperatures, and icy highways, the Philadelphia International Flower Show is a much-anticipated reminder that Spring is just a few weeks away.

Each year in early March, garden exhibitors from all over the world gather in Philadelphia for the Flower Show, transforming the floor of the Pennsylvania Convention Center into a wonderland of gardens, plants, and floral designs. The spectacular display annually attracts more than 250,000 visitors from all over the world, making the Philadelphia International Flower Show the largest indoor flower exhibit in the world. With its international appeal and audience, it is very fitting that the theme of the 2011 show is “Springtime in Paris.”

Since 1993, EPA has used this wonderful venue, which is only a few blocks from our Mid-Atlantic regional office, to educate gardeners on techniques that protect the environment and at the same time create beautiful gardens. Using native plants and recycled materials, our flower show team of volunteers designs, constructs, and creates an exhibit that vividly demonstrates the beauty and practicality of native plants, sustainable water usage, and beneficial landscaping techniques. While our exhibits always carry messages of sustainability, it is amazing to see a new and unique display each year conveying environmental messages in a special and beautiful way. And judging by the thousands of people who view our exhibit and speak with our volunteers, the environmental values and practices we display are growing in popularity.

In keeping with the show’s Parisian theme, the 2011 EPA exhibit is titled “Botanique Naturale,” which loosely translates to “Natural Garden” and focuses on the importance of native plants, wetlands, and watersheds. Visitors will see an exhibit which showcases the rich diversity of the native flora of wetlands and woodlands and depicts how people can use these plants to create a sustainable home garden. Here’s a sneak preview of the plants we’ll be using in our exhibition!

If you’re in the area, stop by and see for yourself the beauty and environmental benefits of sustainable gardening. The 2011 Philadelphia International Flower Show runs from Sunday, March 6th through March 13th at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in downtown Philadelphia. Whether you are an experienced gardener, an aspiring gardener, or just starting to get your hands dirty, there will be plenty to see, learn, and enjoy. See you at the Flower Show!

About the Author – – -Bonnie Turner-Lomax came to EPA Region’s mid-Atlantic Region in 1987 and has held several positions throughout the Region. She is currently the Communications Coordinator for the Environmental Assessment & Innovation Division.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Step Into Spring – – The 2010 Philadelphia International Flower Show

This year has gone on record as the snowiest winter in Philadelphia. With the aftermath of back to back snowstorms (huge piles of snow and icy spots) still very much a part of daily life, the prospect of early Spring seems like a fantasy. Yet, even though it’s still February, Spring will come early – as it does every year – in the form of the Philadelphia International Flower Show.

The Philadelphia Flower Show is an annual rite of Spring that brings together garden exhibitors from all over the world, transferring the huge floor of the Pennsylvania Convention Center into a magical Spring display. It is a sight to behold, taking us from winter to spring as we step into a wonderland of gardens, plants, and floral designs. Billed as the world’s largest indoor flower exhibit and the oldest (1829) in the nation, the Flower Show annually attracts more than 250,000 visitors from all over the world. With its international appeal and audience, it’s very fitting that the theme of 2010 show is “Passport to the World.”

Traditional gardens, despite their beauty and appeal, can cause serious harm to the environment, including pesticide and nutrient runoff, and introduction of invasive species. That’s why since 1993, EPA has used this wonderful venue to educate gardeners on techniques that protect the environment and at the same time create beautiful gardens.

Each year, using native plants, and recycled materials, the EPA flower show team of volunteers designs, constructs, and creates an exhibit that vividly demonstrates the beauty and practicality of native plants, sustainable water usage, and beneficial landscaping techniques. In keeping with the Show’s 2010 international focus, our exhibit depicts an “East Meets West” theme, showcasing a Japanese style tea-house, set in a picturesque North American native garden. Our thousands of visitors are sure to be inspired by the splashes of colors and exotic textures of evergreens, azaleas, pitcher plants, phlox and a host of other native species as they adorn a cedar walkway and tea-house. The exhibit appears to be floating above a reflective pools.

As a Communications Coordinator and a Flower Show volunteer, I have coordinated outreach and education for the Flower Show team for more than 10 years. And while our exhibits always carry messages of sustainability, it is amazing to see unique exhibits year after year, conveying environmental messages in a special and beautiful way.

If you’re in the area, stop by and see for yourself the beauty and environmental benefits of green gardening. The 2010 Philadelphia International Flower Show runs from Sunday, February 28th through March 7th at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
Whether you are an aspiring gardener, an experienced gardener, or you just like to enjoy the sights of Spring, there’ll be plenty to see, learn, and enjoy.

See you at the Flower Show.

About the Author: Bonnie Turner-Lomax came to EPA Region’s mid-Atlantic Region in 1987 and has held several positions throughout the Region. She is currently the Communications Coordinator for the Environmental Assessment & Innovation Division.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.