August 16, 2010

Canadian National Exhibition Garden Show

The Exhibition runs from August 20, until September 6, 2010.

(The photographs here are from September 3, 2009)

The CNE Garden Show is going to be opening in less than a week. The Exhibition is a Toronto tradition. The Garden Show is just a small yet interesting part of it. It takes place in the Heritage Court.

Like many garden shows there is representation from the landscape industry.

Fern Ridge Landscaping installation

There are design competitions, with both live plants and cut flowers. There are also “garden-ish” related presentations. Again this year, Daryl Maddeaux will be doing his balancing act. He takes boulders of any shape and stacks them like totem poles.

Daryl Maddeaux

There are also sand sculpture competitions.

Sand Sculpture

The Garden Show is pretty much what you would expect. It isn't very innovative but the quality is extremely high. It stays in good shape during the full run of the Exhibition because the wilted plant material is swapped out daily with fresh.

Dahlia Table

Bring a camera. You are going to see some really beautiful and striking flowers on display.

Dahlia Flower

Because many specialist plant societies participate you will find a very wide diversity of species on display.

Garden Show Table

My friend Annette's mother, Ursel, won a Best in Show ribbon for her 'Million Kisses' Tuberous Begonia.

'Million Kisses' Tuberous Begonia

Apart from the show there are also an abundance of venders selling Dutch bulbs, unusual tropical plants and bonsai.

CNE Plant Vendors

But here is a big reason I go to the CNE Garden Show. In the Direct Energy Centre building, directly adjacent to the garden show there is the International Pavilion. There are booths representing the products of many different countries from around the world. I go there looking specifically for the blue and white Chinese flower pots. If you like Spode or Delft pottery you will like these. They mix and match really well together and can make a collection of houseplants look beautiful, especially in a formal setting.

International Fair Vendors

The prices are extremely reasonable. I bought the set of 4 unusually shaped square pots (below) for $18.00. The largest one is 11” in diameter. To buy the same set of pots in China town in Toronto would cost around $50.00.

Chinese Pottery

I can't say that you will find the same thing this year, but chances are pretty good that you will find something similar.

Now all I have to do is figure out what the writing on the side means. If anyone out there can help me out please contact me with the information.

Chinese Writing
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If you are hosting a garden related event in the GTA and would like it covered in or would like to place an e-poster about it on our Events Calendar, just contact me. I am always delighted to promote anything gardening in Toronto.

Mark Disero

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