Vanessa Gardner Nagel chirps about garden design

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A Visit to Seattle’s Northwest Flower and Garden Show

Each year I faithfully travel to Seattle to attend the NW Flower & Garden Show. This year was no different, except that we did have some snow challenges. What’s been different for me these past 2 years is that I also speak at this show. But I can’t resist hearing other talks. Those I listened to were Dan Pearson, Matthew Levesque, Debra Prinzing, David Mizejewski, and Ivette Soler. Dan’s design ideas and photos were breathtaking, even if his speaking manner was underwhelming. Debra’s and Matthew’s photos and talks about repurposing found objects were terrific. David’s was informative and encouraging about backyard wildlife habitat. Since my garden already meets all of their criteria to be approved as a wildlife habitat, I’m going to fill out that form today and submit it! Ivette Soler is one exuberant, bubbly speaker when it comes to putting edibles in your front yard. I’ve just purchased her book and am in the process of reading it. Looks good!

Browsing the gardens is the highlight and it’s difficult to come away empty-handed from the marketplace.“Wish ‘Shoe’ Were Here” garden was created by the APLD, Washington Chapter. An enormous shoe, the likes of Sex and the City gals, occupied front stage. An intriguing garden layout and some delightful art were its highlights, along with a few choice plants, like Fuchsia ‘Lechlade Gordon’.

Some of my fellow APLD WA members, d4collective, created the signature garden, “The Garden in Verse”. I loved their use of fabric outdoors to create a cocooned, soft, moon garden.

“Next Stop, Hotel Babylon” was a very contemporary garden with vertical and roof-top planting – one of my favorites.

“A Day Well Spent” by Christianson’s Nursery had some interesting edible highlights in their garden. “Paradise (to be) Regained” was a cute, sustainable garden designed by seventeen-year-old, Courtney Goetz.Karen Stefonick’s “A Wrinkle in Time’ had a ‘crystal ball’ and an attractive patio design.“Run Little Pigs, Run!”, a garden designed by Susan Browne, was full of humor and design interest.

Another favorite garden was “The Japanese Garden: Bridging History”. Beautifully designed by Phil Wood (another APLD member), this garden was simply stunning. Well considered details and it included cherry trees in full bloom (about 2 months ahead of schedule). No small feat!!

A few highlights in the market place for me were Abraxas Crow (one is now happily residing in my garden), a ceramic artist’s colorful totems and many of the glass blowers. A new artist I have not seen before had exquisite ceramic prayer wheels. And who could stay away from seeds and plants? Not me!

Abraxas Crow

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