Burnett: Gardening fantasy in Seattle

Wow! What a show they put on this year at the North West Flower and Garden Show in Seattle.


The moment we walked in, my wife

Donna and I knew it was going to be special this year, with the fragrance of thousands of hyacinths wafting through the air and giant banana plants towering overhead to greet us.


The theme this year was Fantasy, as everything from Alice in Wonderland to the Three Little Pigs was represented in floral displays.

The new owners of the show have really taken it to another level, and they promise to take it even higher next year when the theme will be music.

Along with the show, our Kelowna group that traveled to the show also enjoyed another trip to Seattle’s 1900 Conservatory in Volunteer Park, and enjoyed a wonderful presentation from gardening expert Brian Minter during our stop at his garden centre in the Fraser Valley on the way home.

When we were at Minter Country Gardens, many of us purchased some Kelsey Spanish onion seeds.

It has been impossible to find them the past few years on the seed racks, so we all felt very lucky for the opportunity.

At the show, I always find something new to buy, whether it is a book a garden ornament or a tool, and this year was no exception.

I came across a booth where a man and his wife were selling a neat little handmade grub hoe called a Hoedag. I just had to have one (


It’s great how the weather is finally warming up so we can all get out in the garden.

I’m cleaning up my perennials and cutting down my grasses before too much starts to grow so I don’t damage the little shoots.

Even with the cold weather we have experienced up until now, there is a lot of new growth poking through.

It will increase exponentially as the season progresses.

While it’s still too early to tell if there was any damage to things this winter, I am noticing some “owies” on my English Laurel and Acuba.

These plants are not supposed to be hardy here anyway, so I suppose that is what I get for pushing the envelope.

This is the time of year to start up the greenhouse. The long days and warmer nights will make the plants jump.

Just remember the basic rules of greenhouse disease control which are: Keep all tools, containers and soil clean and free of contamination.

Make sure there is air movement in the greenhouse with the use of a small electric fan.

Always hang up the watering hose so it doesn’t pick anything up from the ground.


There are still a few seats available in my classes held at the UBC Okanagan campus:

Plants and Flowers (herbaceous ornamentals) Saturday, March 19

Roses, Saturday, March 26

Home Landscape design, Saturday, April 2

All classes begin at 11 a.m. and last two hours, except the landscape design session which lasts for three hours.

For more info or to register call UBC Continuing Studies at 250-807-9289 or go to

Also check out my You Tube super-fast landscape project by Googling Random Acts of Creativity-Horticulture.

Tune in to The Don Burnett Garden Show on AM 1150 News Talk on Saturdays, 8 to 10 a.m.


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