If keeping up with landscaping trends and outdoor spaces is important to you, there’s no better event to go to in the Seattle area than the Northwest Flower & Garden Show. It’s an annual destination for Colby and I, and what many local garden aficionados consider to be the harbinger of spring’s soon arrival.
This year we went for one day only – on Saturday – which meant we had to bob, weave and really move in order to see everything on our list. After all, we’re talking about a show that includes a full acre of show gardens, over 300 exhibitors and vendors, and 5 days of back-to-back horticulture seminars.
The show gardens are our absolute favorite thing about the show, a feeling I’m sure is shared by many. Regional landscape architects, designers, landscapers, suppliers and nurseries collaborate to create jaw-dropping show gardens which are constructed in less than 72 hours. It’s an awesome feat; you can watch the process here. This year’s theme was ‘Art in Bloom,’ so it’s no surprise that every garden featured garden art. I’m talking about serious wow factor, as these pictures corroborate.
One of the first gardens we viewed was Dan & Will Robinson’s of Elandan Gardens, pictured below. I cannot speak highly enough of Dan’s work as a designer and landscaper. Colby and I were both in awe of his artful arrangement of decorative rock, some of which appeared to be 5-man rock (landscaping speak for really, really large rocks). Even more impressive was the fact that many of the black pines included in the landscape were pruned and trained for over 50 years from seed by Dan himself.
Across the way was Karen Stefonick’s show garden which, in our opinion, should have won the Founder’s Cup (Best in Show) award. Complete Landscape, Inc and Moon Shadows Landscape Lighting, LLC installed this dramatic landscape. Elegant and meditative, this garden featured clean lines that were softened by natural rock, thoughtful plantings and a refined sense of color. A massive blown glass orchid created by Seattle glass artist Jason Gamrath reigned over the garden, while a group of striking pitcher plants created a focal point in the rectangular pond. I could have sat in this garden for hours.
The show garden that won the Founder’s Cup award is pictured below. Designed by Gardens ALIVE Design and installed by Avid Landscape Design & Development LLC, it featured an eye-catching circular sculpture that integrated well with this forest landscape. It also won the X-Factor award, bestowed upon the garden that “best captures the imagination of the next generation of garden designers.”
Colby loved the pond; we spent a good amount of time taking it in. Large metal pieces and natural elements such as driftwood felt proportionally balanced and perfectly placed, no matter where we stood.
If you missed the show this year, mark your calendar for 2015 as the dates are already set for February 11 – 15. And if you did make it earlier this month, log in to Facebook and let us know which show garden was your favorite!
Thanks for reading our blog. Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties