Stop and smell the popcorn!

The winter of 2015 was particularly dreary and cold in the Northeast.  On many occasions I found myself looking out the window trying to wish away the snow and gray skies.  That’s why I was thrilled about the opportunity to have a girls’ day out to attend the flower show.  Nothing gets me more excited about spring than walking into the Philadelphia Flower Show and being overwhelmed, almost intoxicated, by the smell of spring blooms.  The problem was that this year as I entered the convention center, I was overwhelmed by the smell of popcorn!

The Flower Show Entrance

The 2015 Flower Show theme “Celebrate the Movies,” was designed to allow visitors to experience the magic of movies and horticulture combined.  Of course popcorn is a treat many movie-goers enjoy; nearly everyone seemed to be munching on popcorn as they wandered around the flower show floor. Once I overcame my disappointment in smelling popcorn instead of flowers, I found myself engaged by my surroundings, enjoying the displays, shopping opportunities and amazing specimen plants.  The large horticultural displays offered some creative ideas, including a junk car converted into a chicken coop, a fence post made into bird houses, and garden borders made of logs and twigs. 

Logs created a retaining wall
An artistic fence of logs and twigs

Fence post bird house
A dose of spring
One man’s junk, a chicken’s treasure

 In addition to the large displays, many florists showcased their talents with elegant and whimsical vignettes commemorating magical Disney movies like Cinderella and Ratatouille. Who would have thought of using black plastic tubing as a water feature? But, it worked!

An amazing tower of blooms
Cinderella’s table

Ratatouille’s sewers of Paris
Ratatouille’s fine restaurant in Paris

One of the flower show features I enjoyed most was seeing the fine art made exclusively out of plant material.  From a distance, my friends and I were convinced the framed masterpieces were painted, but upon close observation, it was clear they weren’t.  The miniature gardens were special too.  We pressed our faces against the glass of each artistic arrangement in an effort to visually capture every inch of these diminutive displays that used plant material to create the illusion of shrubs and trees. 

Fine art made of plant material
A miniature garden display

As I left the flower show I found myself feeling lucky. In general, I think those of us who live in the Philadelphia are very lucky.  Philadelphia is the home to America’s first horticultural society, The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, founded in 1827, and the world’s oldest and largest indoor flower show, which celebrated its 187th year this year. I vow to attend the flower show again next year.  I’m just hoping in 2016, I’ll smell flowers again instead of popcorn!

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