In spite of some freshman year issues (long lines at ticket sales, late arriving programs and poorly marked speaker venues) I feel optimistic that the show is on the right path. The display gardens were segregated behind black curtains which gave them an air of importance that has been missing since the good old days at the Cow Palace. Many of them featured natives, drought tolerant and reasonably realistic plant palettes-at least as realistic as plant palettes can be at a garden show, which is by definition a fantasy land affair. There was plenty of that going on too, and let's face it, that stuff is what brings in the casual and novice gardener , and their participation the revenue stream is vital to the financial success of the show.
Every seminar that involved edibles was SRO, and the show seemed as busy as ever, though the footprint was reduced. When I entered the building that housed the plant market I was at first quite happy to see that the aisles seemed wider, but it was an illusion-there were less vendors. Why they can't spread out these booths is beyond me -there are hours in the day when this area of the show is un-shoppable and there is plenty of real estate at the event center.
Our workshop class spent quite a bit of time around this display garden..the lighting here was on of the least dreadful and there was a story ; the garden featured a rain collection system, something of importance to our drought stricken state.The black structures with grids are cisterns that collect rainwater from the gutter system
The outdoor living spaces seemed much more accessible this year..these next two photos are not particularly over the top, and I founf thsi garden very appealing, though my version of it would be far more untidy.
The University of Arizona hit another home run this year..
Re-use, re-purpose--this seat was made out of a discarded propane tank.
These hangy-things in this garden were splendid..
One of the more theatrical offerings.
In the shopping zone:
Not in my wheelhouse.
More glass guys this year I think..
This broom guy was mystifyingly popular , I saw numerous show goers toting these around. Even in the information age, snake oil still sells.