Thursday, March 10, 2011

A Word About The Philadelphia Flower Show


As I sit in bed at my hotel in Philadelphia, following two days at The Philadelphia Flower Show, I have thoughts about what I've seen. I have a few plants on the dresser and a broken cement cat on the nightstand. But mostly, I have sore feet.

This is my fourth flower show in seven days. I can't help but compare them to each other a little, but they each had their own flavor and I wouldn't want to eat the same thing four times in a row anyway. The third one was the Chicago Flower and Garden Show and the locals were disappointed, as were some out-of-towners. Not this one - I liked it.


Then I arrived in Philadelphia for "Springtime in Paris." It was my first time here, my mom's third. Of course, the show's reputation preceded it and you know what happens when that happens. Rarely does anything live up to the hype.


There has been much the same kind of talk here that I heard in Chicago. "It was disappointing." "It could have been so much better." I almost felt guilty for liking the Chicago show. I wondered if there was something wrong with me that I enjoyed it as much as I did.

But I am feeling no guilt whatsoever in saying that I have been blown away by the Philadelphia show. Everywhere I looked, there was some unique, quirky, fabulously beautiful and creative use of flowers and greens. And it wasn't just the flowers. There was also the design and the use of common things in uncommon ways.


Gardens as a creative art form - which is what flower shows are all about, in my opinion - is subjective. I like abstract and modern art. My husband does not, although he has come to appreciate my taste in it over the years.


Like motion pictures and novels and other award-winning artistic endeavors, I can't speak for others when it comes to what they think is good. It's like rating pain. On a scale of one to ten, how bad does it hurt?

On a scale of one to ten, I'm giving the Philadelphia show an eight. I would give it a ten if I never saw another flower show in my life, but I have hopes of attending the Chelsea Flower Show some year and I expect it to be better than Philly. I'm reserving a better score for what I would expect to be a better show.

I am not in the least disappointed with The Philadelphia Flower Show. I could go to the show every single day that it's on and come away from it just as happy on the last day as I was the first.

My expectations were high, but no disappointment here. I'll admit, it doesn't take much to make me happy or excite me. I like that about me. It makes for a happy life. Even so, as I try to be objective about how others might view the show, it baffles me that anyone could come away disappointed.


I respect that others may disagree with my positive impressions of the show. We don't all like the same things. But please don't ask me to understand it. We'll just have to agree to disagree.

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I'll be posting much more about this show, as well as the Chicago Flower and Garden Show, as soon as I get home and catch up on my sleep a little. 

9 comments:

meemsnyc said...

This looks like a pretty awesome show to me!

Ever Green Tree said...

Lovely pictures! We have flowershows out in the open here in India. This was an entirely new experience for me.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I am so glad that you saved the best garden show for the last that you saw on your tour. Don't get me wrong. I enjoyed the Chicago Show I just thought there would be something unusual displayed. I just didn't see much out of the ordinary. The American in Paris display is gorgeous.

Carolee said...

Do the Hampton Court FLower Show...not as crowded as Chelsea, outdoors in summer when it's lovely, cheaper, & many of the displays are the same or better than they exhibited at Chelsea, plus you get to see the palace gardens, too!

Hocking Hills Gardener said...

I guess I am one of those people who get so hyped up and then feel a little let down at our local show. I have no others to compare it with though. I always find little things that I think are fun, new and beautiful at it too so I am satisfied. If I saw as many as you have lately I do not know how I would feel about or rate the local one.
I am loving the pictures of the Philadelphia show Kylee.
That whole Paris Room is amazing. The curtains an large bouquets and the cloche arrangement are all beautiful. Exactly what I was hoping for in last years local Art in Bloom theme. How amazing are those hanging lights? I am anxious to see more. LOL!
Have a safe trip home.

Filip Demuinck said...

very special pictures

Susan aka Miss R said...

Kylee--I'm glad you enjoyed it. I've been going for many years and my expectations are very, very high. Last year I loved it...this year you know how I felt. The best part of the day for me was the hour spent in the company of incredible women at lunch...that and the boots I bought.

Ilona said...

That does look pretty amazing, and I admire your stamina! Your pictures bring the show to life for the rest of us.

I enjoyed your posts on the shows- you are a mighty bloggess;)

Diane said...

That Eiffel Tower is exactly what was missing from the Chicago show: a WOW moment! And I love that series of trees, in your last photo. One of these years I should drag my lazy self to Philly and see the show in person. I'm glad you had such a great time!

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