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Seattle's Northwest Garden Show


audio button Just back from the opening night gala at Seattle's Northwest Garden Show. The event was pure theatre. The Convention Center lobby was festooned with garden nymphs on stilts, and the air was redolent with fabulously decadent (albeit often hideous) floral bouquets. Ooohs and aaaahs were much in evidence...

Vanca Lumfden
Vanca Lumfden

...but I saved mine for the gardens inside. The show winner was The Octopus's Garden, an underwater fantasy designed by Judith Jones (proprietor of one of the best fern nurseries in the country, Fancy Fronds) and Vanca Lumfden, seen here in sequins and seaweed. Of course only the un-stuffiest of judges could have awarded this flight-of-fancy first prize...

Chris Woods

...and I dare say this guy fits the bill. You'd smiling, too, if you were Chris Woods, garden designer, visionary and executive director of the most deliciously exuberant and seriously wealthy public garden in the country, Chanticleer in Wayne, PA.. Chris leads a charmed life and if he wasn't a friend, I could hate him.

Anyway, the biggest find at the show was a source for brightly colored RECYCLED GLASS which has infinite uses in the garden -- in paths, benches, fences, fountains, anyplace you need color and light (I once suggested that Scott pave his balcony with the stuff). Glass scored big throughout the show as a decorative element (pavers, tables, the odd pergola roof) as did spectacular metal gates. Price? Forget it, Jake. This is Microsoft Country.


Finally, a scene from the less than enthralling trade show adjacent to the display gardens. Would you believe this is a wedding cake display for tree huggers? O.K., no jokes: these are 'shrooms! I found the Fungi Perfecti booth amidst the garbage and the flowers that were on sale at the Convention Center, where gardeners were dropping money like there was a tomorrow and it's name would be Spring.


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