Miniature Gardening at the Philadelphia Flower Show, Part 2
Whew! It’s been a whirlwind book tour. Now I know why celebrities only make the media ’rounds every couple of years and I did a fraction of what they do. Glad to be back at my desk and catching up on all things miniature garden. As promised, here’s part two of the Philadelphia Flower Show – the inside scoop…
The Philadephia Flower Show has been my holy grail since I first heard about the Miniature Settings exhibit many years ago. It is the only show to embrace this level of gardening and, boy, it was so inspiring to see them up-close and personal. To get an inside tour from Dr. K. herself, Louise Krasniewicz, the Vice Chair of the exhibit PLUS to have time to dream and scheme with Ron Hoess, the Chair and veteran miniature setting artist, was just the icing on the cake.
Here are my favorite exhibits with a little insight as to why I think they worked so well. It took me going back later on Saturday night to realize there was an outdoor section on one side and in indoor section on the other. Of course my fave was the outdoor displays. OMG – Every time I look at these photos I want to drop everything and make something! Taxes? Paperwork? What IS that?!?! Lol!
Remember, click to enlarge the photos to see the details. All gardens are 1″ scale (1:12th scale.)
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon was one of the seven wonders of the ancient world but the location was never known. It’s present-day location is in Iraq. Pam Goldman made the trip to the area to gather inspiration for this display – I would like to take a moment to thank her for doing so, and to say, “You forgot to take me with you!” Lol!
Sorry about the glare in these photos, all the displays were behind glass.
Master of Suspense: The Birds by Louise Krasniewicz
Note that Louise’s miniature garden plants are grown specifically for the show and meant to only last for the two weeks that the show is up, (includes set-up days before it opens.) Katy, Ron Hoess’ other half and the brains behind the plant nomenclature, told me of a time when she kept the garden part of their display together after the show, and placed it on the windowsill at home. It lasted about a month before it was overgrown and leggy. Even though this way of miniature gardening doesn’t last long, I imagine it’s very fun to create.
Come to think of it, it’s how the full-sized garden shows are created in the middle of winter too: they force the plants to leaf and bloom in greenhouses to get the ready for the big display gardens. Quite a feat!
See more of Louise’s work, along with the rest of the artists, on her blog here. She had a more than a little fun with it after the show ended!
The Lady of Shallott, by Deb and Jim Mackie
See how the boat was made from scratch on Louise’s blog (aka Dr. K.) Miniature Flower Show Settings. Scroll down through the blog, Dr. K. shared several pictures of Deb and Jim’s progress.
For the story behind The Lady of Shallot, we rely on our favorite Internet resource, Wikipedia.
Hepworth: The Modern Stone Age by Lori Anne Currall
The Inside Scoop
Because the Miniature Settings Exhibits are temporary, they tend to be made from tape and cardboard just like a full-sized stage setting where the public wouldn’t see the hidden “duct-tape and chewing gum” that holds it all together while the show goes on. Again, this is where the difference between our miniature gardens and these miniature settings lay: we try to get ours to stay together for as long as we can by using authentic materials and true miniature plants.