Just got back from a whirlwind trip to “Bella Italia,” the 2009 Philadelphia Flower Show produced by The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The show, which runs through Sunday, March 8, supports the many greening programs of the Society.
Stepping through the main doors, I felt like Dorothy when she was transported from drab Kansas to Technicolor Oz.
A massive fantasy rendition of an ancient Roman garden, created by J. Cugliotta Landscape Nursery, brimmed with roses, ageratum, delphinium, wisteria, pink marble walls, imperial columns, statuary and reflecting pools, crowned with a stage where acts from opera singers to Italian folk musicians perform.
Wow, and that’s just the grand entrance.
Other lavish blooming set pieces honor Tuscany, the Lake District, Venice, and the Riviera.
The Milan fashion boutique is a knockout: fanciful gowns, handbags, shoes and hats crafted from leaves, flowers, twigs, vines, seeds and other plant matter.
I longed to pull up a chair at the Men’s Garden Club creation “Evoking Italian Hospitality in the Garden,” complete with wine vault and dining table set under the pergola.
Guess I’ll just keep looking at my photographs until my brown backyard blooms. Grazie to all the hard-working Flower Show gardeners for my restorative trip to Bella Italia.