Posts Tagged ‘men’s garden club’

Exhibitor Spotlight: Perennial Favorites

March 11, 2012

Today is closing day of the Flower Show, and we can’t help but get a little misty-eyed. As always the exhibitors have done an outstanding job creating memorable displays with compelling stories.

Take, for instance, perennial favorite Stoney Bank Nurseries. It is easy to get caught up in the story Jack Blandy and company tell with their display! Picture this: you are driving down the highway in Maui, looking out the window at the tropical scenery. Taro crops appear in flooded fields as the road ahead lazily snakes into the distance. Just another afternoon. But wait! You’re not in Maui, you’re in Philly! How do they do it?

The depth in the Stoney Bank Nurseries exhibit is an optical illusion created by clever backdrops, props, and plant positioning. Exhibitors have a limited space and over-sized ideas, so they have to get creative!

The Men’s Garden Club of Philadelphia also succeed in storytelling. And considering it’s their twenty-third year exhibiting, that shouldn’t come as a surprise. Their interpretation of this year’s theme is especially fun; they depicted a coffee plantation in the midst of celebrating a victory at a coffee festival! 

John Young, the vice president of the Men’s Garden Club of Philadelphia, pointed out the beautiful triangle palm tree in the corner of the exhibit, a rare specimen with a distinctly triangular trunk, which is how this beautiful palm gets its name.

What stories will these exhibitors cook up for 2013? Who know, but we’re sure they will be brilliant!

Through Laura’s Lens: Stalking the Pandanus

March 10, 2012
Picture of Pandanus tectorius roots

Seen during setup week, this plant's roots look like something out of The Lorax.

When I saw these incredible prop roots during set-up week, I stopped dead in my tracks. What sort of plant could this be? I couldn’t find anyone who knew, so one of my fellow guides and I stopped Drew Becher, president of the PHS, to ask him.

Drew knew exactly the plant we meant and was very pleased about having it in the Show. In fact, he told us gleefully that he and designer Sam Lemheney had been on a shopping expedition at a Florida nursery and spotted it over in a corner. Ignoring the big royal palms the nurseryman wanted to sell them, they said, “we want that one.” It took Drew a couple minutes to pull the name off the tip of his tongue—don’t you hate it when that happens?—but he took the time to find it and get back to us.

Ppicture of Pandanus tectorius

Pandanus during a pre-show lighting test.

Pandanus tectorius, also known as hala or thatch screwpine, is one of the few surviving native Hawaiian plants; evidence of the tree predates the arrival of the first Polynesian colonists. Its leaves were used to make sails for sea canoes and fiber for weaving (the craft of lauhala refers to weaving baskets, mats, and other objects from the leaves of the hala).

Pandanus is a “floater”—its seeds are buoyant and can tolerate salt water. No wonder it can be found on islands and atolls all over the South Pacific. Here at the Flower Show, you can find the Pandanus in Pele’s garden, near the Hale (thatched hut). There’s another, smaller specimen on the rear side of the Men’s Garden Club exhibit, near the Marketplace—illustrating that you should always look for hidden gems on all sides of the displays.

The Pele’s Garden Pandanus sheds its usual grey-green color when it becomes a canvas for the fabulous light show. You can find many items woven from the Pandanus in the Hawaii Village in the Grand Hall. Check the schedule on your Flower Show app for weaving demonstrations in the Village as well.

Window Shop with the Men’s Garden Club

March 11, 2011

Walk down a Paris street to enjoy window shopping and delectable delights at these inviting storefronts.  A bistro, cheese shop, art gallery, and more—they may be faux, but the exhibit will leave visitors hungry for further exploration. Thanks to the Men’s Garden Club (353 Aubrey Rd., Wynnewood, PA 19096) for their beautiful display!

Also, entertainment is sure to add some spring to your step. All week long Flower Show guests have been delighted by the lively performances on the Carousel Stage. Check the schedule here to make sure you don’t miss the music, dancing, and costumes that will have you humming “I love Paris, in the springtime!”


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