Why Visit the Connecticut Flower and Garden Show?

Hartford Flower show 2010In case you haven’t heard, the Connecticut Flower and Garden Show 2012 opens at 10:00 am Thursday, February 23 and runs daily through Sunday, February 26. It features many Connecticut-based nursery and horticulture-related businesses and organizations under one roof so visitors get a taste for what’s available once the local gardening season really begins humming.

If you’re one of the Nutmeg State garden and plant lovers still undecided about visiting the show perhaps one of the reasons I attend will help you decide to do the same.

  • It’s Local. It puts a face on nurseries, garden- and landscape-related vendors, and horticultural organizations Connecticut residents are most likely to use and seek advice from.  Some of my favorite booths at past shows include Ballek’s Garden Center (this year at booths 900 and 902, and Landscape #2) for their fragrant welcome, inspiring display, and sage advice; Adam’s Watergardens (this year at booth 1052 and Landscape #6) and Pondering Creations (this year at Landscape #9) for creative water garden ideas; and Connecticut Greenhouse Growers and Connecticut Nurserymen (this year at Landscape #7 and #16, respectively) for their CT grown plants.
  • Pondering Creations, CT Flower and Garden Show 2010
  • It’s in February, in my mind the dreariest month of Connecticut’s year. I need the emotional lift I get walking by racks of blooming plants and smelling spring bulbs and potted herbs.
  • I can touch things. I can test how a pruner or other gardening tool feels in my hands, try on gloves,feel the weight of pots and planters, or check out the construction of a product I might only have seen in magazines or on a website. Plus, many vendors run special show prices which can save money.
  • I collect information. By the time my visit is complete my tote bag is heavy with plant and product catalogues. Not yet a Connecticut Gardener subscriber? Sign up at booth 831, get a glimpse of the latest issue, or pick up some back issues at a reduced price. Learn about Connecticut Historic Gardens at booth 413. Pick up soil sample kits at the UConn Master Gardeners booths (#415 and 417) or, better yet, bring a soil sample for free testing there. You can learn about Master Gardener classes, the Northeast Organic Farming Association (booth 555) and its local chapter CT NOFA, The Connecticut Horticultural Society (Landscape #1), and many other local groups, or sit through one of the numerous gardening seminars.
  • I go with friends. This is the best part. I share my hours sniffing scents, noting plants, and taking in the start of the growing season with gardening friends. We compare observations, discuss experiences and make plans for future gardens.

Adam's Watergardens, CT Flower and Garden Show 2010Don’t go to the Connecticut Flower and Garden Show expecting something on the larger scale of the Boston or Philadelphia flower shows. Go with a local eye to meet and greet the plant, landscape and hardscape resources you are most likely to deal with on a regular basis in your own home state.

On the whole, it’s a great way to spend a February day in preparation for gardening thoughtfully in 2012.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2012 Joene Hendry

5 comments for “Why Visit the Connecticut Flower and Garden Show?

  1. Valerie
    February 21, 2012 at 1:41 pm

    I agree Joene! I am SO looking forward to it. I remember one year that the smell of all the mulches was so intoxicating. They had multiple types in big barrels and I just stuck my hands in. It felt so good to touch something earthy….. I hope you have a great time. I will be there on saturday morning working the Master Gardener booth. If you happen to be there that day, stop in and say hello.

    • joenesgarden
      February 21, 2012 at 7:19 pm

      Valerie, Sorry I will miss seeing you at the Master Gardener’s booth … I have other obligations on Saturday. Hope you get a lot of questions and soil samples to test.

  2. February 21, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Joene, Enjoy the show. I wonder if this season’s non-winter will mean a stronger turnout for the show since people are already thinking about spring and gardening. Hope so.

    • joenesgarden
      February 22, 2012 at 12:19 am

      Debbie, I’ve wondered the same. I know I’m gearing up for an early spring. Hope tohave some photos to share from the show.

  3. February 22, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    I like garden shows for all those same reasons. I learn so much and am always inspired. I look forward to seeing your photos…

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: