Thursday, April 25, 2013

Green Thumb Festival this weekend!


Greetings all, and yes, it's finally time for our biggest show of the year. This is a long blog full of great information so scroll on down and find out the scoop and we have some gorgeous pics at the end to whet your appetite.

Put on by the St. Pete Parks and Recreation dept. it's the ...............


27th Annual Green Thumb Festival 2013
April 27 & 28 - 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Walter Fuller Park, 7891 26th Avenue N., St. Petersburg, FL, 33710

Join in the fun and excitement of celebrating Arbor Day and Earth Day at this annual city festival. Now in its 27th year, the Green Thumb Festival features environmental and horticultural exhibits, vendors (with every kind of plant imaginable),  the Garden Club of St. Petersburg Flower Show, a grow and share program, a diagnostic clinic (bring soil and water samples), a recycling rally, free mulch, plant auction, more than 1,500 trees for sale for $3, tool sharpening booth, entertainment, Garden Railroad display, children's programs, other environmental programs and exhibits, and a food court.

Tips for coming to the festival:
Bring a cart, wagon, extra children etc to carry things !  There are no carts to rent but sometimes you will find enterprising young people with carts to help you for a small tip.

Wherever you purchase plants (especially if you are asking the vendor to hold your purchase), get that vendors card, or note the booth number on the programs that are available.  It's very easy to get overwhelmed and forget what you bought and where.

Note, the City is very strict with us vendors about keeping within our assigned spaces, thus we have little space to hold purchased plants, but we make our best effort to carve out a spot to hold purchases. We will have bags, tags and marking pens for you to mark your plants. There is no parking on the street behind our booth area, but you may drive up and pick up your plants quickly--we encourage safety as the traffic can be quite heavy. We will try and have staff available to help you load.

Best way to park:  There is a huge parking area in the north end of the park, plus on the street parking in the surrounding neighborhoods. Please pay attention to any "no parking" areas and be considerate of not blocking neighbor driveways.  Our tip?  Come into the park from the Tyrone Blvd way -- you get to the parking area faster than coming from the south.  Landmark from Tyrone Blvd is the Sports Authority store on the corner of Tyrone Blvd and 80th street.  80th street runs south into the park area.

Food & Drink - are provided in the main Food court area, as well as restrooms

Bring - Water, hats and sunscreen (luckily the park has many shade trees to get out of the heat_

Where can you find Mitch Armstrong Nursery?!

Our booth area is located along the 80th street roadway that runs west along the park, just across and a bit south near the 28th avenue north side street.  If you park in the big north lot, as you come into the festival, just past the first sidewalk, you will find us on the right side...just look for the HOLLYHOCKS out front !  Note on your program, our spot numbers are #65-70.

Here's some pics of some of the fabulous plants we will have:


Gorgeous Millet -great for Bird lovers


Hibiscus - some of the most unusual ones you will find, including the Fiji Queen and Pink and Lavender hybrids




Blooming Pink Mandavilla - one of our favorite decorative vines because it's so hardy and blooms most of the year


Dwarf Papaya - one of our customers favorites, as you don't need a ladder to harvest fruit - reaching only about 6 ft. and it is self pollinating and you will have fruit within 6 months


We always have a great selection of Passion Vines, which we love for their exotic looks, as well as being Butterfly friendly, as host and feeder plants for many types of Butterflies

This Quadrangularis is a large, aromatic bloom, that produces an edible fruit


Stephanotis Vine - a very uncommon vine to find as most growers sell the flowers to florist for wedding hairbands and flower arrangements. This hardy vine has deep green foliage, and the very fragrant flowers last a long time.


The Gardenia we have this year is the "Belmont" which is very similar to the Aimee gardenia....dark green foliage and very large double blooms. This is considered a rare gardenia, known for it's hardiness and long bloom period from late winter all the way to the following Fall.


Christia obcordata,aka Buttefly Wing - another rare plant that wows customers with it's unique foliage that looks just like a mass of striped butterflies !


The lovely Dutchman Pipe Vine is another crowd favorite for it's large, unique blooms and serves double duty as a host plant for Swallowtail butterflies.


The Cassia we have this year is the unique "Popcorn Cassia", whose foliage, when touches, smells like you are in your favorite movie theater with a giant box of aromatic sweet popcorn !


The Citronella geranium is well loved for it's beautiful foliage, delicate blooms and help to keep the bugs away !


Tropical Hollyhock - Well, everyone knows that they can find the biggest and best Hollyhocks with us, and we sell hundreds at this event. A true perennial for our area, it provides long lasting color and blooms, and does reseed for future blooms.  This time of year, it's best in an area that gets morning sun and works well in-ground or in containers.



"Lady Margaret" Passion Flower is Annie's favorite and one we grow in our own yard, as it is a prolific bloomer and handles any kind of weather.
 
 The blue Alata Ceruella Passion provides blue color in landscape, a color that is not commonly found. Another great bloomer and butterfly friendly.





Going Bananas ?!  This year we have the "Gran Nain" Banana, aka Chiquita banana, a fast growing and fast producing plant.

And, we also have a couple of the rare "Golden Rhino" Banana, which produces a long, horned banana--definitely one for collectors.



What else? Hmm..well, we have "Lady Di" Helleconia, Fiddlely Figs, Caladiums, Bamboo Muhley grass and so much more, not enough space to tell you all about it, just you just have to come to the event and see us ...

See You This Weekend !
 
  
     

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