Local Landscape Designer Wins at Singapore Garden Festival

August 16, 2012 by

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!

You’re Invited: Garden Party at SugarHouse

July 27, 2012 by

Flower Show sponsor SugarHouse Casino will host a mid-summer garden party on Monday, July 30 from 6 to 8 pm. Sip cocktails and snack on hors d’oeuvres as a PHS representative shares insider information on the region’s top gardens and landscapes.

Other elements of the evening include flower-arranging demonstrations and makeup tutorials from Sephora. A free gift bag with floral delights will be given to all attendees. Plus you can enter to win an escape to Longwood Gardens!

To attend this free event, RSVP with your full name and phone number to SHGardenParty@gmail.com. Click here to see the invitation. See you there!

SLUGFEST – A New “Flower Show” Mystery Novel

July 11, 2012 by

Rosemary Harris is a longtime volunteer at the Philadelphia International Flower Show, as well as author of the popular “Flower Show” mystery series. Her latest is Slugfest and here’s the synopsis from Amazon.com:

“Anthony and Agatha Award-nominated Rosemary Harris is back with her fourth Dirty Business mystery, Slugfest, set at a legendary Northeast flower show where more than the plants are dying.

“When Paula Holliday agrees to act as exhibit manager for a reclusive artist she’s expecting a laidback weekend picking up gardening tips. She doesn’t expect to be knee-deep in horticultural sabotage, beheaded gnomes, homicide, and something called The Javits Curse. Then an overeager attendee is found floating in the river and Paula realizes she accidentally holds a clue to his murder—that’s when the garden gloves come off and this flower show turns into a real Slugfest!

“This time out Paula is joined by a colorful cast that includes Rolanda “Fort” Knox, a no-nonsense security guard; Guy Anzalone, Brooklyn’s Tumbled Stone King; Jamal Harrington, a high school kid with a black belt and a green thumb; JC Kaufman, a feisty lady who hates leaving home without her weapon of choice; and a slick marketing guy hawking the hottest new product at the show, a foolproof pest repellant that people are dying to get their hands on.

“With limited means and her ragtag crew, Paula must solve her toughest mystery yet and root out a killer before she finds herself pushing up daisies.”

Learn more about the book here. Seems like great beach reading to us!

Miss the Flower Show? It Lives On in Philadelphia!

June 26, 2012 by

The 2012 Flower Show lives on in Philadelphia in unexpected ways: Beautiful palm trees from the Show have been transplanted to the front of some of Center City’s most exciting addresses, including the Ritz Carlton Hotel and the Shops at the Bellevue.

Also, elements of the Flower Show and parts of the PHS exhibit have been incorporated into the new PHS Pop Up Garden. Come see for yourself at 1905-15 Walnut Street. The garden hours are as follows:

Tuesdays through Fridays, from 11 am to 2 pm
Thursday evenings from 5 pm to 7 pm
The second Saturday of each month from 9 am to 1 pm

For more information about the garden and its features, sponsors, and programming, click here. We hope you have the opportunity to relive some of the Flower Show around Philadelphia this summer!

Watch the Flower Show Episode of “Cake Boss”

June 19, 2012 by

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.

PHS Partners with CHOP on Rooftop Garden Project

June 7, 2012 by

The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) has partnered with Groundswell Design Group to create an outdoor space for children who typically must spend a lot of their time indoors. A beautiful rooftop garden, called the Sea Garden, was inspired by the original Seashore House with the goal of bringing the calm of the sand and the sea to patients and families. In addition to the beautiful design, the garden will host ongoing educational programming for patients and families that will include everything from alphabet gardening and story-telling, to nutrition and healthy eating.

The Sea Garden features different types of plants: natives, edibles, shrubs, and flowers—helping children with different challenges bloom and grow to the best of their abilities. PHS is working with CHOP to sustain the space, and will provide educational support for those who tend the garden. Meadowbrook Farm will be supplying seeds, vegetable plants, and herbs to be grown in the garden this summer for the children to maintain and enjoy. For more information about this inspirational project, click here.

Pictured above at the garden’s ribbon-cutting ceremony are  (from left to right): David Fierabend, principal at Groundswell Design Group; Madeline Bell, president and chief operating officer of CHOP; Maitreyi Roy, senior vice president of programs and planning at PHS; and Julie Snell, PHS project manager.

Nominate Your Great Space for the Community Greening Awards

June 5, 2012 by

We know that many of you Flower Show enthusiasts carry your love for horticulture into community gardening efforts, so we thought that we’d let you know about PHS’s Community Greening Awards!

The Community Greening Awards are a way for PHS to recognize all the greening efforts throughout the region that beautify communities, brighten lives, and help the environment.

Typical recipients of the award include individuals/groups who maintain main streets, public parks, traffic islands, train stations, churches, schoolyards, libraries, or businesses. But as green spaces come in all forms, the contest organizers are open to all possibilities! Municipalities that have led tree planting initiatives, combated storm-water runoff, or pursued other ecological projects may also apply.

In order to be considered, a site must be nominated. You can nominate your green space or one that you admire from afar by filling out the nomination form.

Once the nominations are compiled, judges will be sent to evaluate the sites in July and August. The judges look for plant variety, design, use of space, and horticultural practices. Sites that have been recognized in previous years may be evaluated for a maintenance award.

For more information on this program to uplift phenomenal gardening efforts in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware, please e-mail specialevents@pennhort.org or call 215-988-8897. Also, check out last year’s winning sites!

Pass the Teapot and Pour the Wine

May 31, 2012 by

The more you learn about something, the more you enjoy it, right? We have two events coming up about beloved daily pleasures, tea and wine. These are great opportunities to enhance your tea-drinking and wine-drinking experience—and wow your friends with all you have learned about these lovely beverages.

The Pleasures of Tea: An Evening Tasting & Lecture
Wednesday, June 20, 2012 6 pm – 8 pm at PHS

Join PHS for an evening of discovery about the cultivation and enjoyment of tea with tea expert Anupa Mueller, owner and founder of Eco-Prima Tea in Tarrytown, New York. We will taste and compare eight to ten different teas from renowned tea regions of the world, with an emphasis on India and China. And with a nod to our upcoming PHS trip to South India, high quality Darjeeling, Assam, and Nilgiri teas will be included. A brief introduction will precede the tasting, covering the history and origin of tea, growing and harvesting/manufacturing methods, seasonal variations, and pointers on how best to store and steep tea. After the tea tasting, Allison Rulon-Miller, founder of From Lost to Found Travel, will talk about the upcoming trip in January 2013.

Wine Lecture: The Horticulture of Wine
Thursday, June 21, 2012 6 pm – 8 pm at Meadowbrook Farm

Wine is now America’s number-one alcoholic beverage of choice, but did you know the most important aspect of wine is horticulture?

Environmental educator Brenda Sullivan will review the history of wine through the ages, as well as current trends that have made wine so popular. She’ll explore varieties, pathogens, pesticides, pruning and environmental trends. This session will conclude with a wine tasting, including local sustainable wine that will wow you!

Get Involved with Garden Clubs

May 29, 2012 by

Ever think about getting involved with a garden club? You absolutely should! The greater Philadelphia area is crowded with clubs, so there’s bound to be one (or two or three) that are a good fit for you. Some are based around a special interest, like the Delaware African Violet and Gesneriad Society, and others are primarily location-based, like the Master Gardeners of Mercer County.

Click here for a compilation of garden clubs with open meetings. This is a tiny sampling though, so sound off in the comments sections if there’s a club you’d like to see recognized.

Remember, garden clubs are a great opportunity to connect to the horticultural scene in your area, and will likely lead to involvement in community-service projects, plant swaps, and garden tours. You could even end up exhibiting at the Flower Show!

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones Changed

May 24, 2012 by

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.


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