I mentioned last week that I was headed to the Flower and Garden Show. This year’s theme was Romance Blossoms. That has to mean flowers–lots of flowers–right?
I have to admit; I was a little disappointed. While the displays were beautiful, many of them featured tulips. I have a bit of a checkered past when it comes to tulips.
Picture me and the MR as young newlyweds in our first home. I’d never been much into gardening, but the MR knew all about landscaping. That first fall, we bought some bulbs and planted them by the front door.
I waited anxiously and watched as the tulips came up the next spring. Then just as the buds opened, we had a windstorm, and the beautiful blooms turned into ugly sticks. All my hopes were dashed; I had lost my faith in tulips.
So imagine garden after garden filled with them. I put my love-hate relationship aside, and embraced the beauty. These walkways lined with spring bulbs and variegated grasses are lovely. But cannas won’t be blooming in spring. This is cheating and sets up many a new gardener to failure and heartbreak.
One of the first years that I attended the Northwest Flower and Garden Show in Seattle, a display featured paths made of hot pink gum balls. Sticky? Nasty? Crazy? Yes.
Then there’s the mix of indoor plants with outdoor plants that drives me crazy. I have a difficult time keeping cyclamen alive inside. If I stuck it outside in a pot; there’d be trouble. So I’ll take to heart the profusion of flowers and pots in the same hue in varying shapes and sizes. These things I love; these exact flowers–not so much.
I like more practical inspiration like this giant ball fountain.
OK, maybe that’s not very practical either. Some of the gardens featured glass art scattered among the blooms. These were quite pretty and fanciful. I especially liked the salmon swimming in the sea of tulips.
I hesitate to put anything breakable outside with our crazy dogs but love the whimsy these generate.
I also liked the idea of carrying the color of the blooms onto the pots and pillows of a nearby seating area. Look at all that lovely peachy-orange.
Carrying the tone throughout the display adds such nice continuity. Perhaps I need purple blossoms in the planting bed by the little bench? I don’t think I want to paint it yellow to match the daffodils that are blooming now. Something to ponder.
I also liked this arrangement of calla lilies and ranunculus in the same tone coupled with textural grasses.
That’s what these shows are all about–making you think and generating new ideas.
A hanging teepee is not my picture of an idyllic retreat, but someone might enjoy this.
And while we don’t have to go for a bike ride to enjoy a picnic in the meadow, it’d be fun to set up a blanket with petals for a romantic dinner outside when the warm weather comes.
With our steep slopes, I’m always looking at interesting ideas for retaining walls. Maybe large metal planters are the answer for some areas near the house.
I think a chair in a field of flowers next to my vegetable garden would be the perfect place to read a book or drink a glass of lemonade after tending the beds.
The MR has been talking water features for a while. I don’t think this Rube Goldberg-esque fountain is quite what he had in mind, but I’d love to have one down by the orchard. I’m on the hunt for old brass instruments.
And wouldn’t this be a wonderful place for a wedding, a proposal, or just some pretty photos?
While I love the waterfall, and the “floating” walkway of stone, I’m ambivalent about the flower bumpers. It seems kind of like a good idea gone a little overboard.
Now if we’re living large and money were no object, we might have to add a few of these basalt columns–so graphic, so beautiful, so heavy, so expensive. It’s OK to dream a little.
Now if you’re planning a Mother’s Day Tea or a spring event, these bark covered posies are sweet and fanciful.
Last year, I came home with all sorts of purchases. This year, I held back a little. I did buy a finger weeder and a wonderfully sweet smelling daphne. I’ll let you know how they work out.
Are you ready for a new season of gardening? Getting inspired?