Archive for April, 2009

Made in the Shade, Chapter 1

April 30, 2009

Our backyard is littered with old fence and other debris right now. A lone boxwood is about all that remains of our former garden.

The deterioration of the fence around our 22-by-18-foot, Center City backyard has created a new opportunity:  a Flower Show-inspired garden in the narrow beds on the perimeter. The shrubs and perennials that once bloomed there were mostly overgrown or choked out, and the survivors have succumbed to the boots of the fencing contractors. But greenery shall rise again within our new garden walls!


A Sit-Down with Sam

April 30, 2009


How did Philadelphia Flower Show designer Sam Lemheney celebrate the closing of the successful 2009 Show? He didn’t; there wasn’t time. Less than a week later Sam was on a plane to Florida searching for the perfect plants to use in his new project: designing the Macy’s Flower Show in Center City Philadelphia (which ran from April 5 – 19). I met with Sam and asked him about his experience.


A Miniature Marvel

April 28, 2009
I'd like to vacation there!

I'd like to vacation there!

I just spoke with a blue ribbon winner, Lucille Dickerson, who created a fantastic miniature setting for the ’09 Show. She told me the idea for her spacious villa setting came from the cover of a book called Private Tuscany. “I was at the bookstore looking for inspiration. I saw the picture on the front and instantly knew what I wanted to do.”


Plant, Water and Grow

April 26, 2009


This warm weather has inspired me to plant things, including the PNC coffee huggy seeds from the 2009 Philadelphia Flower Show. I put them in a small pot in my yard. We’ll see how they do.


Flashback Friday 2

April 24, 2009


The McLean Library, located on the first floor of the PHS offices (20th & Arch streets), is a great resource; it’s how I came across this gem of a photo.

Here’s some context: the year is 1932 and Flower Show organizers are posing at the Commercial Museum.  Perhaps this group, which includes J. Liddon Pennock Sr. and Washington Atlee Burpee Jr., are planning for next year’s Show (see the advertisement below). 


Spring is Springing

April 21, 2009


I don’t know about you, but nothing says spring – other than flowers, of course – than a great spring dress. (A pair of Audrey Hepburn-inspired sunglasses don’t hurt either.) That said, Philadelphians are looking forward to another harbinger of spring, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s annual Azalea Garden Partycoming up on May 7. The Azalea Garden Party, held behind the Art Museum among 150 different varieties of azaleas and rhododendrons, is PHS’s second largest fundraiser (the Flower Show is the biggest), with proceeds going to outreach programs, including Philadelphia Green.

kop201If you are looking for a dress,  Lilly Pulizer at the King of Prussia Plaza is having a jubilee of its own on April 22 from 4-8 p.m. 10 percent of the afternoon’s sales will be donated back to PHS. You can receive a limited-edition Lilly Pulitzer patch tote on purchases of $200 or more.  RSVP for the jubilee by calling 610-265-7607.

Stay tuned for tips on azalea care. I know I have a shady spot in my yard that is screaming for some color.  








What a landscaper can do for an urban backyard

April 17, 2009

cugliotta1Although I have worked at PHS for over 10 years, I really don’t know much about gardening. This year, we decided to “do something” with our backyard and I worked with one of the Flower Show exhibitors Joe Cugliotta (of J. Culgliotta Landscaping/Nursery). This is not a picture of my home, by the way, we are still in a holding pattern of planning, so I took a picture from Cugliotta’s website. I live in the City of Philadelphia in a row home with a small backyard (maybe 15’x20′) and never thought I should ask a landscape designer since I have such a small space. Here is what I learned. (more…)

Flower Show Flashback

April 17, 2009


1994: If the warm spring weather is making you smile, you’ll appreciate this Flower Show theme from 15 years ago.  “Islands in the Sun” transported visitors to sandy beaches shaded by swaying palm trees. Makes me want to learn the ukelele.

Did anyone attend this Show? If so, what do you remember?

Junior Flower Show Coming!

April 17, 2009


More than 6,000 area students and teachers are looking forward to celebrating Earth Day next week at PHS’s annual Kids Grow Expo, which partners with Temple Ambler’s EarthFest to allow kids to participate in activities and interactive displays related to environmental awareness.

 School-age children will have fun entering a Junior Flower Show and join in on the  2009 Kids Grow theme, “Trees Please,” which will offer fun ways to learn about trees as a natural resource that provides fresh air, serves as a building material, and acts as a shelter for wildlife.


The Expo is a free event and will be held rain or shine on April 24 from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Temple University Ambler Campus, 580 Meetinghouse Road, Ambler. For more about the Expo, please visit the PHS website .

Macy’s Flower Show: Check it out!

April 15, 2009


Check out some of the images of the Macy’s Flower Show on PHS’ Flicker page! This event took place last week in Center City and Philadelphia Flower Show designer Sam Lemheney and Burke Brothers Landscape Contractors (veteran exhibitors of the Philadelphia Flower Show) collaborated on the installation and creation of the flower gardens.

The Show will continue through the week and I’ve put up 2 images here as a teaser, so enjoy!


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