Friday, February 13, 2009

NJ Flower & Garden Show

This post is my personal opinion only. It in no way reflects the views of Rutgers Gardens or any of its staff. I am not a spokesperson for Rutgers Gardens.

I love my new camera. I’ve been eagerly anticipating trying it out in a large indoor setting to see how it performs. It didn’t disappoint. Using a slower shutter speed, I was able to capture the flower show in all of its glory. The first few photos came out blurry. Lacking a tripod, I had to make an extra effort at keeping my hands steady.

The deepening recession has hit the landscape industry hard. Not only were there fewer than usual display gardens at the NJ Flower & Garden Show this year, they were significantly smaller than in the past. Buying the materials, trucking them in and assembling and then disassembling the gardens are costs that most of us don’t consider when we attend these shows.

Limiting the size of the gardens also limits creativity in the designs. Usually there is at least one garden that stops me in my tracks and makes me say “WOW!”. Today all I saw were gardens that made me say “Eh!” and keep on walking.

A few individual elements made me pause in admiration. Like this whimsical fountain:

Or this more traditional one:

If it weren’t for the red bamboo, I probably wouldn’t have liked this ornament as much. To give you an idea of the small scale of the displays today, what you see in the photo is the entire garden.

This randomly placed gargoyle temporarily halted me. Is it me or is it horribly out of place?

The highlight of the show for me was this winning entry in the Garden Club of NJ competition:

Winner of a blue ribbon and the coveted Club Competition award, it was designed by five members of the East Brunswick Garden Club, two of whom are Master Gardeners that I have had the pleasure of working with on the Executive Committee of the Middlesex County Master Gardeners.

You can see all of my photos of the NJ Flower & Garden Show on Flickr.


DebMc said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and photos. Most of our local garden or home type shows do not allow cameras.
It's a bummer to not have a 'wow' moment as you walk through the show.

Fortunately, for many nurseries in our area, there seems to be a huge resurgence of interest in veggie gardening this year. Hopefully, sales from that and the addicting of new folks to gardening will help keep the nursery business 'growing' through this recession.

OldRoses said...

Good thought! It will be interesting to see if any of my neighbors take up gardening this year as opposed to just buying annuals to stick in containers and along their driveways.

lynn'sgarden said...

Hi fellow NJ gardener! I was at the same flower show and felt exactly like you..just "eh-eh"..spent more time browsing the market isle. I've enjoyed the lovely photos on your blog.

OldRoses said...

Hi Lynn! Glad to hear that it wasn't just me that was disappointed this year. I hope Philly isn't disappointing too!

joey said...

Thanks for sharing this timely post. March madness hugs for new life and a beautiful spring :)