The Wrap Up: Victorian Spring Garden and Lifestyle Show06 October 2015 Dan Wheatley
It was Victoria’s turn in September with another great plant-centred show, this time at the other end of the eastern sea board, after August brought us to Queensland. Both shows were all about plants, and plant lovers.
The inaugural Victorian Spring Garden & Lifestyle Show for 2015 was a great weekend out in a stunning setting at the Mornington Racecourse, and in stunning Victorian sunshine too. This combined with a good turnout and great stallholder displays set the perfect foundation for what we hope is to be the annual garden show on the Mornington Penninsula.
Home sweet home in Mornington, the Garden Clinic stand.
A big thank you to our sister radio station 3AW Melbourne for letting Graham and I into their Docklands building to broadcast the Garden Clinic early on Saturday and Sunday morning. Nice of you guys to share your studio space with us. I’m sure 2GB Garden Clinic listeners are grateful too!
Graham interviewed John Arnott, the manager of Cranbourne Gardens on air on Saturday, and John told us that by the 1840’s Victoria had 21 botanic gardens, testament to the passion of Victorian gardeners all those years ago, and a sentiment that lives on in and around Victorian suburbs today. So it doesn’t surprise us that Victorian garden shows have a strong plant focus and are so well supported.
An impressive selection of unusual plants were on display, and for sale.
Yet again we had loads to give away to keen gardeners in the crowd. Graham had the perfect opportunity to hand out a few new release plants and product from the main stage, where he spent most of his time.
Graham getting a little sun-kissed on stage. the Victorian Garden & Lifestyle Expo was blessed with great weather (whilst Sydney was freezing).
A massive hit with the crowd at the Victorian Spring Garden & Lifestyle Show, the traffic-stopping Osteospermum ‘Blue-eyed Beauty’ has iridescent yellow flowers that sit well above the plant, so that it looks amazing in full flower, radiant in the spring sun. We like it for its long-term winter flowers and think it makes a great combination with summer-flowering gazania and arctotis. It'll thrive in full sun and part shade and it’s pretty tough. Available from your local nursery.
Osteospermum 'Blue-eyed Beauty'
We thank Boomaroo Nursery for our great display of plants from their ‘Boom’ range, including luscious lettuces, arranged into a living salad-bowl. They were a big hit with passers-by, looking good enough to eat right there. Great idea for a dinner party or Barbecue.
Boom! a living salad bowl.
The ‘Boom’ flower range were also quite popular with our visitors, including ‘Carnation Oscar’, a hardy carnation available in a range of colours that will thrive either in pots or mass planted along garden borders as a colourful display. Oscar will also tolerate the cold conditions that Victoria is famous for.
As my Grandfather would say, a gentleman would simply not be dressed without a splash of carnation colour in his lapel.
And it wouldn’t be a Victorian show without new release plants from Tesselaar, and they have not disappointed us. We displayed six medium sized Magnolia ‘Fairy’ looking glorius in full, goblet shaped, lemongrass scented flower and the crowd just adored them. This welcome new addition to the Magnolia genus, (M. doltsopa x Yunnanensis x figo) which was formerly known as Michelia, is bred to produce masses of creamy-white flowers in early Spring. These plants are so free flowering that they have a flower bud at each leaf axil and have been known to provide a light flush of flowers during summer too. And their bushey, rich evergreen foliage and soft, felt-like buds make for very attractive cut flowers for the home too.
M. 'Fairy', from Tesselaar. Available at your local garden centre
Other than a bounty of botanical wonders, the show had loads to offer. From fruit and veg to garden sculpture. Upstairs beside the Q&A stage a floral art exhibition displayed entries from several competing florists, and Mornington boasts some very talented floral artists. The fairy garden from Seaford Florists was particularly popular.
Natives were very well represented at the show, and our friend Glen from Austplant Nursery on the Mornington Peninsular had some very eye-catching native orchids on his stand, in full flower and full sun.
Some of Austplant Nursery's beautiful native orchids
Garden tools were plentiful, but for quality I couldn’t go past Daniela Koeppen Rosenfeld’s European Tools stand. And we hope to be able to bring you a selection of tools from Daniela’s range in the not too distant future in the Garden Clinic Shop. Watch this space!
Daniela from European Tools with her great range. Can't wait until i have some in my shed!
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