Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Are Our Perceptions of Beauty Changing?

A Day At The Philadelphia Flower Show

Last week I was lucky enough to sneak into the Philadelphia Flower Show before it was open to the public. Philly’s flower show is the oldest and arguably the best in the country. The cold, snowy weather made it that much nicer to be surrounded by flowering plants and the sweet smell of mulch.

The first thing I noticed when I came up the stairs was a giant beehive from Subaru. A small fence in the shape of a honeycomb surrounded their display and the staff were wearing yellow and black jackets. Ok, they didn’t have wings but they were clearly bumblebee wannabes. When I stepped inside I was standing under the beautiful marquee in all its colorful glory, as dramatic and bold as years passed.

Then I started to notice that I wasn’t seeing many perfectly spaced, gaudy annuals in rows. I was seeing something far more natural. Hellebores were nestled into pine needles and fallen branches. The edging of displays were made of logs and sticks. Crocus were blooming in the un-mowed grass. Butterfly scarves were for sale. Beehives and birdhouses were prevalent. Butterfly plant stakes danced above violets and sedge. Old rusted cars became hen houses. Best native plants were called out and a native, Fothergilla was named best bloomer. Someone was even bold enough to show their shrubs, barely leafed out, with ornamental grasses in the snow!

I was moved to see that we are moving closer to nature, that we’re beginning to accept the imperfect as beautiful. And, that we’re accepting native plants not because we think have to but because they bring life to our gardens!

Hope your snow melts soon! Peggy Anne

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