funky chicken

A funky chicken from last year’s fabulous Cracked Pots area. I fell in love with this. Yet somehow, I don’t have one. What gives?

The Oregon Association of Nurseries’ spring gardening "bash" – The Yard, Garden & Patio Show – is happening Friday February 18 through Sunday February 20, 2011. Held at the Oregon Convention Center directions here), this event brings together vendors of plants, tools, gardening gadgets and non-profit gardening education groups like Oregon State Master Gardeners and Cracked Pots (recycled garden art). There are also demonstration garden displays showing off seasonal plantings and talks and gardening demos all day long.

YGP SHOW HOURS:
Friday Feb 18: 10 am to 7:30 pm
Saturday Feb 19: 10 am to 7:30 pm
Sunday Feb 20: 10 am to 5 pm

This event gets better every year, pulling in smaller, more interesting nurseries and offering more adventurous display gardens, livelier talks and demos, and more non-profit organizations. It used to be stodgy but it gets hipper every year. Yet it still has enough of that crusty, old-school vibe (displays with silly multi-colored primulas planted 1 foot apart in a sea of bark dust, for instance!) to keep it from drifting towards an excess of Portlandia hipness. Highlights this year include talks by Amy Stewart, author of "Flower Confidential" and "Wicked Plants", as well as an array of local and national gardening talent. Personally, I’m heading straight for the booth with the Tillandia (air plants). I scored some unusual specimens last year and am – apparently – in the process of turning my bathroom into a Brazilian jungle.

 

Last year's Cistus Design Nursery display

Maryellen Hockensmith, multitalented gardener, organizer and Hardy Plant Society of Oregon volunteer, hones in on a little red Uncinia grass with her iPhone. Cistus Design Nursery created the most fantastic display at last year’s YGP Show, with dazzling trunked Yucca rostrata and Restio plants, fantastic pottery and native licorice fern growing from logs. And this year…?

Visit Dennis’ Seven Dees soon and buy YGP tickets for $7 (instead of $12, at the door). Supplies are limited.

Lake Oswego: 1090 McVey. 503-636-4660
SE Portland: 6025 SE Powell Blvd. 503-777-1421
Cedar Hills: 10455 SE Butner Blvd. 503-297-1058
Seaside: 84794 Hwy. 101. 503-738-6980

And for a sneak-peek into the behind-the-scenes machinations of the YGP Show, join the Oregon Association of Nurseries’ lively Ann Murphy for a guided tour, two days before the doors officially open. Visit her blog, Random Acts of Gardening to read about it and sign up.

The behind-the-scenes event is Wednesday Feb 16 from 4 to 6 pm and takes place at the Oregon Convention Center’s VIP lounge.

See you there!