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March 10, 2017

A sneak peek of 'Holland: Flowering the World'

This year's PHS Philadelphia Flower Show features plenty of tulips and eco-friendly designs

Arts & Culture Flower Show
Carroll - PHS Philadelphia Flower Show Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

More than 6,000 fresh-cut and dried flowers hang from the ceiling, representing rows of flowers often seen in Dutch gardening.

The 188th PHS Philadelphia Flower Show will be at the Pennsylvania Convention Center from Saturday, March 11, through Sunday, March 19. This year, the theme is "Holland: Flowering the World." 

The first thing guests will see walking into the show is a brick bridge entryway surrounded by 30,000 flowers and giant windmills. Vibrant pinks, reds, yellows, oranges and purples greet visitors.

Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Attendees to the 2017 Flower Show will pass under a brick bridge inspired by Amsterdam. City dwellers will often chain their bikes to the bridge, so the show maintained the tradition.


Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Windmills were one of the earliest uses of natural energy.


Once through the entrance, attendees can wander as they please through the landscape and floral exhibits. Tulips and bicycles are incorporated into many of the designs, as they have become easily recognizable symbols of Dutch culture.

The majority of the exhibitors are local, but leading designers from the Netherlands are featured, too. Nico Wissing, Bart Hoes, Bart Bresser and New Jersey-born Carrie Preston were all invited to show off their talents.

Their exhibits showcase the "Dutch New Wave" movement, which takes a natural and sustainable approach to landscape design.

Visitors will see landscapes depicting realistic Netherlands gardens. Preston incorporates a chain-link fence in her design, while another exhibit re-creates a rooftop garden with a graffitied wall.

Sinead Cummings/PhillyVoice

“Dutch New Wave” blends formal gardening style with the wild beauty of natural landscapes.


The Dutch Ecodome, designed by Wissing and shipped from the Netherlands, is a can't-miss at the Flower Show. He created it in 2016 as a green technology display for a gathering of European Union leaders in Amsterdam. Solar panels and the ability to convert rain into drinking water are two features of the design.

While many exhibits highlight a focus on sustainability or the beauty of the Dutch landscape, some designers chose more unique themes.

A floral design titled "PEDALS: The White Bike Plan" celebrates the creation of Amsterdam's bike-share movement, which started with a group of young activists in 1967.

Another exhibit pulls inspiration from Piet Mondrian's famous painting "Composition with Large Red Plane, Yellow, Black, Grey and Blue."

Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

“PEDALS: The White Bike Plan” celebrates the 50th anniversary of The White Bike Plan, a bike-share movement in Amsterdam.


Sinead Cummings/PhillyVoice

This landscape by J. Downend Landscaping Inc. was inspired by a Piet Mondrian painting.


The exhibits might be the main draw, but this year, the Flower Show is introducing two new features that pull visitors off the show floor. Attendees will want to check out the Dutch Shopping Village and the Garden Spa.

As for returning add-ons, look for the PHS Pop-Up Beer Garden and the Butterflies Live! exhibit.

Tickets for the 2017 Flower Show are available online and at the door.

Escapes

Limited - Australia

$2907 -- 8-Night Foodie Trip: Sydney & Melbourne

Limited - Catalonia Royal Tulum

$569 & up -- Upscale All-Inclusive Tulum Getaway w/Flights

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Limited - Myrtle Beach

$75 & Up -- Myrtle Beach Resort w/Newly-Renovated Rooms & Breakfast

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