Author Archive

Looking for Flower Show Info?

February 5, 2013

rebranded_phs_boxIn years past, this blog has been a great source of information regarding the exhibitors, attractions, and features of the Philadelphia Flower Show. With the launch of our new website, we’ve streamlined our blogs into one spot! When you’re looking for some in-depth coverage of the Show, please find it here at the PHS blog.

Thanks for your support!

It’s Brilliant! 2013 PHS Philadelphia Flower Show Tickets Are Now On Sale

October 18, 2012

It’s time to start planning your visit to the 2013 PHS Philadelphia Flower Show! New in 2013, the Flower Show will be open for an extra day—from March 2 to 10—giving you two full weekends to experience the culture and horticulture of the United Kingdom while exploring great gardens and learning from the world’s most celebrated growers and designers at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

All proceeds from the Show, from both ticket sales and sponsorship contributions, support PHS and its acclaimed urban greening programs, including City Harvest. Click here to purchase tickets and while you’re on there, check out the special PHS membership benefits, theme nights, garden teas, ticket packages, sneak peak construction tours, and more.

We can’t wait to see you there. Cheers!

Flower Show Wins Nine International Festival Awards

October 2, 2012

The PHS Philadelphia International Flower Show received nine international awards for excellence for the 2012 presentation, “Hawaii: Islands of Aloha,” at ceremonies held September 21 in Denver, CO.

The Flower Show, which benefits the year-round programs of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (including City Harvest), was honored in a variety of programming and promotional categories. The prizes for PHS included a Gold Award for its sponsorship program with SugarHouse Casino, which included the creation of the new Flower Show feature. A Gold Award was also presented in the merchandise category for the Flower Show garden bag, a beautiful carrying case for gardener’s tools.

The winners were announced at the International Festivals & Events Association/Haas & Wilkerson Pinnacle Awards Ceremony held during the association’s 57th annual convention and expo. The awards for the Flower Show were earned in the following categories:

  • Best Single New Sponsorship Program: The Man Cave sponsored by SugarHouse Casino won gold.
  • Best new merchandise: Flower Show Garden Bag won gold.
  • Best full-length TV promotion: 6abc Preview Party show won silver.
  • Best event video: Flower Show retail video won silver.
  • Best miscellaneous video: Promotional “Hawaii” video won silver.
  • Most creative/effective news stunt: Window and Lobby Decorating Contest won silver.
  • Best vendor/supplier: Waldor Orchids won silver.
  • Best volunteer program: Competitive Classes and Horticour won bronze.
  • Best new promotion: Hawaii Village won bronze.

The professional competition draws entries from around the world. This year’s entrants included the Indianapolis 500 Festival; Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival in Canton, OH; Kentucky Derby Festival in Louisville, KY; National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C.; Showtime Events in New Delhi, India; Gimje Horizon Festival in South Korea; World Gourmet Summit in Singapore; Rotterdam Festival in The Netherlands; and the Beethoven Easter Festival in Krakow, Poland.

The entries included programs, merchandise, print and broadcast ads and media campaigns, posters, and many other categories.

The PHS Flower Show is America’s premier horticultural event, providing inspirational and informative displays, educational presentations, and entertainment. The 2012 Flower Show attracted 270,000 visitors from around the world.

The 2013 Flower Show, “Brilliant!”, will glow with the majestic beauty and creative genius of Great Britain’s gardens and landscapes, culminating in the urbane design of 21st-century London. The show will take visitors from royal settings to the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, from rolling hillsides to foggy streetscapes, from sunny cottage gardens to the dark alleys of Jack the Ripper.

The show will open a day earlier than ever before and run from March 2 to 10, 2013–two full weekends to enjoy the spectacular landscape and floral exhibits, make-and-take workshops, new plant showcase, and other new features. For ticket information, please visit

Schaffer Designs Creates Constitutional Display

September 21, 2012

As headquarters of the Constitution’s landmark 225th anniversary, the National Constitution Center had a lineup of celebratory events in September that included a floral art pop up by Bill Schaffer (AAF, AIFD, PFCI) and Kristine Kratt (AIFD, PFCI) of Schaffer Designs, three-time “Best in Show” winners at the Philadelphia International Flower Show.

This sculptural piece was assembled on the Center’s front lawn on September 17 and incorporated 80 stars submitted by top floral designers from 46 states, Puerto Rico, and the United Kingdom. The stars, which many of the designers made using materials indigenous to their respective states, were hung along with large, monochromatic spheres that had been covered with red or white carnations, white larkspur, stock, and hydrangeas.

Christian Kanienberg, a sculptor and mural artist from Wilmington, built the 12- by 16-foot steel canopy to display the bouquet and Delaware Valley Wholesale Florist donated the flowers. Bill, Kristine, and their crew of volunteers began their creation at 5:30 am and because of National Park Service rules, had to dismantle it by sundown the same day!

Join us in not only celebrating the anniversary of the Constitution, but also in congratulating Bill and Kristine on their success, their vision, and for their dedication to such a special project!

Flower Show Technology Highlighted in New Video

August 29, 2012

Feeling a bit nostalgic for some of the amazing sights from the 2012 Flower Show? Klip Collective has posted a video on its website that features some of the visual technology that was used at the show. Working with GMR Design, Klip Collective created projection spectacles including the large “wave-wall” at the entrance of the show that invited visitors to walk under a calming display of sea creatures and flower blossoms.

A central Hawaiian temple featured video-mapped animations and filmed content to tell the story of Pele, Hawaii’s female fire god, and to transform the temple exhibit into a vibrant light experience.

While at Klip’s website, check out some of the other amazing projects!

PHS Pops Up on Walnut Street

August 21, 2012

Join PHS for happy hour in the Pop Up Garden (on Walnut Street between 19th and 20th) on Thursday, September 13 from 5 to 8 pm. Sip wine or beer and indulge in some light fare compliments of our Pop Up Garden sponsor, Chipotle Mexican Grill. Tickets are $40 until August 30 and $50 thereafter, with all proceeds going to PHS’s City Harvest program. City Harvest grows fresh produce through a network of community gardens and helps feed more than 1,000 families in need each week.

Not only does the Pop Up Garden raise awareness for City Harvest, it has also been profiled for its role creating healthy community spaces, inspiring successful philanthropic efforts, and offering a quiet respite from city life.

On, the role of the Pop Up Garden as a philanthropic effort with multiple, coordinated sponsors was profiled. PHS President Drew Becher was quoted as saying, “Philanthropic efforts of companies look for three things. You have to offer employee engagement, volunteer opportunities, and employee education. The Pop Up fulfills those requirements for at least three months, providing lectures on a variety of topics, as well a need for volunteers to staff the garden,” he added.

The concept of the Pop Up Garden is important because studies show reclaimed lots lead to healthy communities. In an article on, Lari Robling posted that, “Health researchers have long suspected that ‘cleaning and greening’ overgrown, vacant lots does a neighborhood good, now they have gathered mounting—and solid evidence—that transforming nuisance properties pays off in health dividends.” this article profiled how PHS’s efforts in greening vacant lots is an ongoing effort at more than 8,000 properties.

On, writer Nicole Juday profiled the pop up garden and said that, “PHS has created gorgeous deep beds of ornamental shrubs and colorful herbaceous plants are interspersed with food crops like rainbow chard and hot peppers…But unlike many demonstration food gardens, a visitor will not feel the invisible hands of the designer on their shoulders, exerting her to drop and genuflect in at the base of the open-pollinated okra or the heirloom variety Indian corn. In this garden, the plants themselves are a backdrop to the centerpiece, a series of wooden tables placed end to end, lined with mismatched, brightly painted chairs. On my visits, I saw people at the table checking their smart phones, playing chess, eating lunch, and reading.”

Space is limited at the happy hour—make your reservations now at

Local Landscape Designer Wins at Singapore Garden Festival

August 16, 2012

Joe Palimeno of Ledden Palimeno Design-Build Landscape Company in Sewell, New Jersey,  is celebrating two victories for his exhibit, “The Modernist Garden” at the 2012 Singapore Garden Festival.  Because of Joe’s 20 years of experience creating 46 exhibits—and winning five “Best in Shows” at the Philadelphia International Flower Show—he was invited to Singapore to compete against the world’s top garden designers.

“Being involved in the Philadelphia Flower Show for the past 19 years really prepared me for this event and I was proud to represent not only the United States, but also PHS,” Joe said.

The Singapore Garden Festival is a biennial event and the first and only international garden show in the tropics to showcase creations from the world’s top award-winning garden and floral designers all under one roof.

Joe’s exhibit used innovative materials inspired by modern art and social ideas as the driving force in his design work, with the ultimate goal to provide an outdoor living space for the delight, joy, and serenity of the people that inhabit the space. The design included a contemporary shade structure and a soothing plunge pool.  Custom cushions added softness to the stone walls by providing a comfortable place to sit. A path leading through the garden incorporated long, sweeping lines of turf. Plantings acting as walls helped to define the space with color, texture, and scent that brought the exhibit to life.

“Much like the Philadelphia International Flower Show, the 2012 Singapore Garden Festival put us in front of 300,000 international visitors over an eight-day period, showcasing all the possibilities of what one can have in their own backyard, but with the difference being truly among international designers,” said Joe.

“I am looking forward to the 2013 Philadelphia Show and I can’t wait to show our designs for both EP Henry and Subaru,” he continued. “I am drawn to contemporary design with modern clean lines and materials. My ideas changed from what I thought I was going to do since my time in Singapore. This trip filled me with so much inspiration and creativity that is starting to pour out onto paper. We are showmen! Designing and building garden displays is what’s exciting and drives us all at Ledden Palimeno.”

And we can’t wait to see what he has planned. Congratulations, Joe!

Watch the Flower Show Episode of “Cake Boss”

June 19, 2012

Did you catch “Cake Boss” last night? The episode of the popular TLC show was primarily filmed at the 2012 Philadelphia International Flower Show!

The stars of the reality-TV show provided a tropical-themed dessert for the wedding of Flower Show exhibitors Bill Schaffer and Kris Kratt. The ceremony was held on the stage in the Show’s central feature, followed by a reception on the Show floor.

Don’t worry if you missed it. The episode, titled “Beer, Buttercups, and Bumbling,” airs again tonight (Tuesday, June 19) at 7 pm and next Monday at 8 pm. Check local listings.

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones Changed

May 24, 2012

The United States Department of Agriculture recently released a new Plant Hardiness Zone Map (PHZM) to reflect data collected from1976 to 2005 and includes two new zones:  12 (50-60 degrees F) and 13 (60-70 degrees F). The map, which can be searched by ZIP code on the USDA’s website,  is based on the average annual minimum winter temperature, divided into 10-degree Fahrenheit zones.

The last version of the map was released in 1990 with data collected from 1974 to 1986. A comparison of the two shows that zone boundaries have changed and each zone is warmer. According to the USDA, if your hardiness zone has changed, it does not mean you should change what you are growing in your garden. What is growing successfully now will most likely continue to be successful. The USDA also stated that since the map represents 30-year averages of extreme weather events (the coldest temperature of the year), changes in zones are not reliable evidence of global warming.

Hardiness zones are based on the average, not the lowest temperature that has ever occurred or might occur. Gardeners should keep that in mind when selecting plants, especially if they choose to “push” their hardiness zone by growing plants not rated for their zone. And while this edition of the USDA PHZM is the most detailed to date, there might still be microclimates that are too small to be detected.

The new map has a higher level of resolution and can show smaller areas of zone delineations. For example, cities hold more heat because they have large amounts of concrete and blacktop, so a city or town may be assigned to a zone warmer than the surrounding countryside. Higher elevations tend to be colder than surrounding lower areas, so the top of a mountain may be an area of cooler zones. A location near a large body of unfrozen water may provide milder winter weather and be in a warmer zone.

While these numbers are certainly interesting, the USDA also encourages gardeners to rely on their own experience before making any sweeping changes to their practices and plant choices.

Horticourt Stories: Ray Rogers Showcases Exceptional Aloe

April 27, 2012

Ray Rogers, from Atlock Farm in Somerset, New Jersey,  has competed in the Horticourt at the Philadelphia International Flower Show since 1990. In this video profile, he shares his love of the aloe plants that he propagates and hybridizes in one of the many greenhouses at the farm. Of his Flower Show experience, Ray says, “It’s fun to exhibit at the Show. It’s fun to think that people are wondering who is the person behind it.”  Take a look at the video and you won’t have to wonder!

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