Flower shows are ready to bloom all over the place

February 16, 1997|By Jerry Morris | Jerry Morris,BOSTON GLOBE

The surest sign of spring is the blooming of the annual flower shows.

Spring thoughts officially arrive in Boston March 8-16 at the New England Spring Flower Show at the Bayside Exposition Center. The show, a delight for the past 125 years, will feature 40 landscaped gardens, lectures, demonstrations and competitions.

Visitors will spot a spectacular exhibit based on the theme of "Secrets of the Garden." One tropical display features a large waterfall and live animals; other exhibits will explore the hidden life of the garden from butterflies to the mystery of nocturnal creatures.

For information or to purchase advance tickets, call the Massachusetts Horticultural Society at (617) 536-9280. To charge tickets, call (800) 442-1854. Discounted tickets are available at Stop & Shop supermarkets until Feb. 20. For more ideas on what to do in Boston, call (888) SEE BOSTON.

The Philadelphia show, March 2-9 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, will feature exhibitors from around the world: Japan, England, Holland, Belgium, Italy -- and fields of fragrant flowers.

The entire city joins in with Flower Show Week with a variety of cultural events, hotel and day-trip packages and more, all centered on a spring theme. For information about Flower Show Week, call the Philadelphia Visitors Center at (800) 611-5960.

The Philadelphia show is not only the largest in the country but also the first, beginning in 1827. For more information, call (215) 988-8800.

A fun way to see the show is to join a Philadelphia in Full Bloom tour, which includes accommodations, private tours of the flower show, theater, tours of an 18th-century estate, dinner in a private club or lunch in a private home, and more. Packages begin at $497 a person; for information, call Philadelphia Hospitality at (800) 714-3287.

The "first breath of spring," as the people in Rhode Island like to say, is the Spring Flower & Garden Show at the Convention Center in Providence, Feb. 20-23. The fourth annual show will include more than 400 floral exhibits, landscaped gardens, retail displays and seminars. Among highlights will be a scale reproduction of Roger Williams Park and a woodland garden with white birch trees and native wild plants. For information, call (401) 421-7811.

Cleveland's Floralscape '97, March 5-9, the Midwest's largest flower and garden show, turns the city's center into a 6-acre floral fantasy. For information, call (216) 721-1695.

The Hidden Gardens of Savannah, Ga., will be on view April 18 and 19. For information, write to the Garden Club of Savannah, P.O. Box 13892, Savannah, Ga. 31416.

Macon, Ga., not Washington D.C., is the site of the largest cherry blossom festival in the country. This year's festival will be March 14-23. For information, call the Macon-Bibb County Convention & Visitors Bureau, (800) 768-3401.

The 50th annual Festival of Houses and Gardens in Charleston, S.C., will be March 20-April 19. The walking tour features homes and gardens. Also featured will be an oyster roast and barbecue. For information, write to Historic Charleston Foundation, P.O. Box 1120, Charleston, S.C. 29402; or call (803) 720-1189. Tickets sell out early.

Pub Date: 2/16/97

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