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Bean Bush Royal Burgundy One Seed Chicago

I've made my seed selection for One Seed Chicago. The bean I will be growing will be Bean Bush 'Royal Burgundy' from Botanical Interests because I think the pods will make interesting garden photos. Botanical Interests, like Renee's Garden, is a sponsor of Chicago Spring fling.

I'm the kind of gardener that will buy seeds from wherever I can, but these two seed companies are making me consider buying exclusively from and endorsing smaller seed companies in my gardening endeavors. Their embrace and support of garden bloggers is enough to make me come to this realization and their seed packets are impressive enough to seal the deal.

In the post 'Edible Gardening in 2009' I provided pictures of the seed packets from Renee's Garden to illustrate just how much seed sowing information is part of the seed packaging. Botanical Interests also uses the seed packets to provide good information on the seeds they sell.


Paper Tube Seed Collars For Direct Seed Sowing

I couple of years ago I purchased some ridiculously expensive seeds. I knew I was going to direct sow the seeds in the garden and I knew that eventually I'd forget where they planted and would probably get neglected. That same day I had made a number of homemade seeds pots, in particular some paper tube seed pots and I got the idea to take the paper tube seed pots outdoors in the garden.

Out I went into the garden with extra paper tubes, some seeds and a pair of scissors. I cut the paper tube into sections about an inch tall and sunk them into the soil, I then placed a couple of seeds inside of each of the sections of paper tube and watered them in.

paper tube seed collars and seeds


Chicago Flower & Garden Show 2009

I think I've pretty much covered everything I wanted to cover for the Chicago Flower & Garden Show. Thanks to everyone at Sheila King Public Relations who extended me and my fellow local garden bloggers press passes to enter the garden show. The two images below is a panoramic view of part of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show. You can click on them for a larger look.

Chicago Flower & Garden Show


Dancing Stones

Dancing Stones is another garden installation at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show that like Reflections and Hope for the Healing Planet is Asian inspired.

Paradise in a Parking Lot

The Paradise in a Parking Lot garden is a departure from gardens like Reflections, Rooftop Garden of the Future & Hope for the Healing Planet. When I first saw it I during the media preview of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show I thought to myself that people would either love it or hate it.

Hope for the Healing Planet Garden

The Hope for the Healing Planet Garden exhibit at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show is another Asian inspired garden. It has a more natural feel to it than Reflections because it uses a lot of wood.

Hope for the Healing Planet

Greening Up

I've covered the Reflections garden and the Rooftop Garden of the Future at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show. This exhibit is called Greening Up and it is a four-season garden set around a replica of a typical Chicago garage. The display was divided into four quadrants and each quadrant showcased a different garden style. The garage in the center of all these gardens has a living roof.

Winter interests garden

Rooftop Garden of the Future

The Rooftop Garden of the Future is very different than Reflections, the Asian themed garden, but in some ways they are very similar. I'm a sucker for modern design but I'm not sure how I feel about this rooftop garden. The part of me that likes the use of austere lines, reflective surfaces and sci-fi channel lighting drools over this garden.

rooftop garden of the future

Reflections Garden: Chicago Flower & Garden Show 2009

One of my favorite featured gardens at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show is Reflections: A Spirited Garden of Asian Inspiration. The Chicago Flower & Garden Show guide tells us; "Asian gardens are entrancing, serene spaces-tranquil and timeless. Generally small in scale, they achieve considerable effect with a minimum of resources, relying on eco-friendly materials artfully arranged. Decorative touches include a Buddha and lantern fashioned from natural stone, while Japanese maple, ginkgo trees and weeping larch add to the contemplative mood."

Usually, copy exaggerates to sell something but in this case I don't think the copy does the product justice. This garden can't really be described in words and my pictures don't do it justice. Amidst the noise of the crowds, sound effects and the distracting lighting this garden give visitors to the Chicago Flower & Garden Show a place to relax. I recommend visiting this garden later in the evening when he crowds have dwindled so you can really appreciate it.


Garden Marketplace Chicago Flower & Garden Show

When I went to the media preview of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show a few of the vendors were unpacked and I was able to buy a couple of things but I had to wait until the first day of the show to see many booth. If you're attending the Chicago Flower & Garden Show here are a few vendors I think you should stop by and visit at the Garden Marketplace.

Teds Greenhouse Chicago Flower & Garden Show, cacti and succulents


Media Preview Chicago Flower & Garden Show

Today I attended the media preview of the Chicago Flower & Garden show. It has been a number of years since I attended the Chicago Flower & Garden show so I wasn't sure what to expect. Below you'll find a few pictures to give you an idea of what the show looks like. I'm going to do something different than when I went to the Independent Garden Center Show. I'll take suggestions on what I should cover in this blog. Some of the displays left me scratching my head and some wowed me. The show stealer (IMO) is the light and sound display by Nathan Tomlinson from Chicago-based Sound Investment. It is a 24 minute show that starts off with birds chirping early in the morning and takes you through a Chicago thunderstorm and ends with a sunset. If you're attending the show make sure to look up. It shouldn't be missed.

light and sound show, Chicago Flower & Garden Show


Edible Gardening In 2009

I've been reading a lot about how growing your own fruits and vegetables is going to be huge this year. The bad economic news apparently has people turning to gardening to in an effort to feel like they have some control in their lives or they're turning to vegetable gardening in order to feed their families.

Whatever the reason people are turning to gardening it is welcomed news not only to the seed companies, who are reporting increases in sales, but to those of us who garden. All of a sudden family members who once made fun of my dabbling with plants and seeds are now calling and emailing me asking for advice. This year tiny urban garden in Chicago will be a lot more edible than it has in the past. I feel a bit like I'm jumping on the edible gardening bandwagon but in reality it is more out of necessity. Last year I was too busy to tend to my garden and this resulted in a lot of plant deaths-instead of replacing them with more perennials I'm going to fill the space with vegetables.

Renee's Garden, vegetable seeds heirloom seeds