‘Art in Bloom’

  • Written by Shannon Michael

Outside, the skies may be gray, the trees leafless, the gardens seemingly lifeless, but step into the Washington State Convention Center February 5-9 and you’ll be transported to a rich palette of color and light, with thousands of blooming flowers and exotic plants giving you a sneak preview of spring.

The Northwest Flower & Garden Show, now in its 26th year, is sure to provide imagination and inspiration with its magnificent showcase of gardens big and small, over 100 free seminars, “Play With Friends” for families, a big line-up of exhibitors in the Marketplace and more.
“Art in Bloom” is the show’s theme for 2014, with the region’s top garden designers and landscape firms embracing a festive tribute to art in over 20 colorful and dramatic display gardens.

Locally, Garden Creators participants will include Karen Stefonick Design, of Woodinville; Fancy Plants Gardens Inc., of Bothell; and Gardens ALIVE Design, of Duvall. Oasis Outdoor Environments, of Woodinville, is a participant in the Small Space Showcase, while Fragrance Fragrance, of Bothell, will participate in the Floral Competition.

Karen Stefonick is known for incorporating her experience in interior design with landscaping knowledge to create award-winning, stunning outdoor living spaces. She has participated in the Northwest Flower & Garden Show since 2002, and has won several design awards at the show.
Fancy Plants Gardens, Inc., with certified professional horticulturalist James Sprague at the helm, has won two gold awards at the show, and is an award-winning Garden Creator participant.

Kirsten Lints, of Gardens ALIVE Design, has been actively involved in planning, designing and preparing a garden display in collaboration with Rob Boyker of Avid Landscape Design & Development LLC, according to her website. They co-created the Washington State Nursery and Landscape Association and Washington Association of Landscape Professionals display garden, called Nature’s Studio: Celebrating the Shade.

Thomas & Carolyn Gutierrez are the husband and wife team at Oasis Outdoor Environments. They specialize in creating beautiful and nurturing outdoor living areas with an artistic approach to functional spaces.

Area businesses showcasing their products and services in the Marketplace will include Bartlett Tree Experts, of Kenmore; Beyond F Stop, Forest Green Enterprises, Glass Gardens NW, and Harley Exteriors of Bothell; Elena Balekha Art, of Duvall; and from Woodinville Epoxy Coatings/Jon’s LLC, Italian Home and Kitchen, and Molbak’s Garden + Home will represent the Northshore area.

The bustling Marketplace is a shopping destination with over 350 exhibitors offering the hottest new tools and other gardening gear, plants, and unique art for the home and garden. The “Vintage Garden Market” returns with repurposed and “shabby-chic” treasures for the garden and outdoor living spaces by local vendors.

Specialty nurseries will be introducing new and exotic plants — as well as old favorites — in the Plant Market. The “Garden Gallery” display and competition spotlights skillfully-crafted garden art pieces in a variety of mediums. They are available for sale by the artists at the conclusion of the show.

Complementing the eye-popping display gardens, the “Small Space Showcase” presents innovative, idea-generating small space and container gardens for those seeking inspiration for gardens on their deck, patio and terrace. The artistry of the area’s top floral designers is spotlighted in the “Floral Competition,” with lavish displays of artfully arranged blooms.
Besides the display gardens and business displays, attendees can also participate in the show’s “Seminar Series,” a big line-up of 110 seminars presented by top-tier experts, all free with admission to the show. The seminars are sure to jump-start your gardening experiences – and help you learn about trends that not only beautify but are practical, too. Also returning this year are the “Garden to Table” cooking demonstrations with top-notch presenters, including co-executive producer of Growing A Greener World TV Theresa Loe, TV host & kitchen living expert Coryanne Ettiene, and author and 425 Magazine style editor Alexandra Hedin.
The popular “Gardening 101” series for the new gardener runs all five days of the show this year. Speakers include local gardening masters Ciscoe Morris, Marty Wingate, Marianne Binetti, Debra Prinzing, Rizanino Reyes, Bill Thorness and many others.

In an effort to make the annual garden show family inclusive, Friends of Waterfront Seattle is playing a lead role to champion the community’s new vision for 22-acres on Seattle’s Central Waterfront.

At their “Play With Friends” interactive family activity area at the show, children and parents are encouraged to imagine the waterfront’s “post-Viaduct” future.

With children 12 and under admitted free to the show, it’s a fun-filled environment where children can touch, play, learn – and take something home. Children can create fish, sea creatures, cranes and other structures with robotocized Legos, make stop motion animation videos with figures and drawings they create and contribute to a waterfront mural.

Children can also participate in a show-wide treasure hunt, sponsored by Swansons Nursery, with entry forms available in “Play With Friends” and show information booths.

Show dates and hours are Wednesday, February 5, through Saturday, February 8, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, February 9, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.Phone orders can be placed at (800) 343-6973.

Regularly priced adult admission tickets are $22; and $5 for youth, ages 13 – 17. Children 12 and under are admitted free to the show.

For a complete schedule of all activities, visit

Share this post

Submit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to Twitter