Friday, October 22, 2010

Landscape Ontario's Expo

After a brief chat and catch-up with our tribe of garden writers, it was off to the trade floor to the What's New section. This is an area of wholesale products that might or might not be picked up by retailers in the months to come.  

For those of you who are new to this blog - I'm not exactly a fan of burlapping plants in the winter. Yes, if the plants are close to salted sidewalks, it can be beneficial to put up some burlap to keep the salt away. However, just as I would never put on a piece of burlap and go for a stroll in -20C weather, plants are not kept any toastier by burlap mummification. Exhibit #1 below - see if you can count all 10 wrapped plants - yes they're very, very small:

So, I suppose there's a market for a metal frame and piece of burlap packaged together.  But honestly it doesn't make it right in my books.

For those of us with tall paper refuse bags and short legs - here's a dandy product.  No excuse any more for putting small neighbourhood children into the bags and demanding they stomp down your leaves.

But then I came across something I really would want to buy - these perfect little orchids - and I'm kicking myself that I didn't work at getting a better shot.  To give you an idea of the scale - the pots are about the size of a small fist.  Each flower is about 2.5 cm (1") and they come in so many colours.  They will be available at Terra Nurseries for about $15.00Cdn or so.  An absolutely lovely little hostess gift.  The grower Mike van Steekelenburg of CosMic Plants Inc. says that the only difference between these wee treasures and larger orchids is that they need to be watered every 5 days or so.

I thought this was a very handsome looking portable fire pit.  And, a gardeners hollow leg - probably a great idea, but I just don't need something that's going to make me look even less attractive when I'm out in my gardening duds.

Landscape Ontario had a lovely display of annuals and new plants - thought these Superbells Coralberry Punch really stood out nicely.  Look how pleasant they look combined with the ferns.

Judging by the number of seed companies who were on the floor - it looks like the home gardener will have lots to chose from.

Not as many of the wooden kits at this show - but certainly the trend of being able to buy a custom-looking trellis rather than have to hire a carpenter to make one for you is continuing.  This set is made by Gormwood of Richmond Hill.

This show was formerly the Garden and Floral Expo - there were many more flower growers showing their product in this fall show compared with the January show.

Valleybrook Nurseries is offering more tropicals this year.  I'd lusted after Acalyphas for years - here's one that you'll be able to find in independent nurseries called Tahiti.  Quite yummy.  Below is Colocasia 'Mohito'.  Depending on the price, I might just have to take one home next year.....

And just one last shot to finish - I've never been a big fan of Bougainvillea grown as a houseplant.  After seeing them grow wild in Barbados as hedges, it seems that it was a horrid form of torchure to sit them inside during our Canadian winters - however, I'm starting to rethink things a bit - imagine if you had a table you could devote to them - I was really impressed at how pretty they all looked together - perhaps the key to growing this plant inside is having more than one....lots more than one.


Carol said...

I will say this for burlap wrapped shrubs esp. evergreen. Deer cannot eat them. Sweet orchids and I keep meaning to find a portable fire pit. It must have been fun to meet up with other garden writers. ;>)

Northern Shade said...

I think the burlap shelter would be very handy if a cedar was going to do a little camping. It could pack its tent shelter and little portable fire pit, and hike off to see the wilds.

The markings on Colocasia 'Mohito' make those giant leaves stand out even more. I loved Colocasia in my pots this summer, especially when the foliage was dripping with water.

Barbarapc said...

Carol - that's a great point & one I've never thought about because we're in an urban setting! Thank you. It was indeed terrific to meet up with the gang.
N.S. And I bet I know of some folks who after spending a weekend in the bush, claim they've actually seen it happen. LOL. Mohito was marvelous - even better in person. Can imagine just how gorgeous it would be with the water droplets.

Barry said...

I have to admit that I had my head down in the plant displays when I attended Wednesday, but I did manage to see some of the items dispayed in your post. I was trying to sneak out with the Albizia julibrissen 'Summer Chocolate' but they were watching it as though it were visiting royalty. First time to attend, and sadly, when compared to Chicago.... they could definitely take some pointers.

Grace Peterson said...

Looks like a fun trip. That burlap really is sad looking. What is the point of growing shrubs if they're going to be covered up for half the year? The bougainvillea display is delightful indeed.

Gail said...

I've often wondered about burlap wrapped shrubs. It sounds like you had a great time~gail

Anita said...

Thanks for mentioning Gormwoo in your post Barbara. I just added a link to your post on our Facebook page for our fans to have a look at.