Metro Weekly

The Philadelphia Flower Show goes Dutch

This year's Philadelphia Flower Show transports guests to the rainbow landscapes that have shaped Dutch history.

Photo: R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

Local D.C. florist Daniel Espejel has been to the Philadelphia Flower Show so many times he has lost count. “I look forward to the show each year,” he says. “It’s perfect for seeing the latest trends in floral design. I also love walking through the landscapes and finding unique items among the vendors.”

The theme for this year’s show, “Holland: Flowering the World,” will transport guests to the rainbow landscapes of tulips, hyacinths and daffodils that have shaped Dutch history.

Visitors will be welcomed to the show with a re-creation of Dutch cityscapes with bridges, windmills, and canals among more than 30,000 flowers. Other highlights include the World Market in the Convention Center’s Grand Hall, featuring a Dutch Shopping Village of imported and domestic specialties, opportunities to create a take-home bulb garden or crafted planter, lively Designer’s Studio demos and real-time competitions, a PHS Pop Up Beer Garden, and free tastings at the Fine Wine & Good Spirits store. 

A new way to experience the exhibits and excitement of the show is the “Flowers After Hours” party on opening day, Saturday, March 11. From 9:30 p.m. to midnight, the show floor turns into a giant, ’90s inspired dance party featuring Philly rocker Tommy Conwell performing live, along with DJs from WXPN.

Visitors to the show might also want to make time to see the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It has a extensive collection of works by Dutch artists that include many paintings of flowers and landscapes. In addition, the museum is hosting a major watercolor exhibition, American Watercolor in the Age of Homer and Sargent. The exhibit includes many rarely seen masterpieces traces the rise of a uniquely American medium.

The Philadelphia Flower Show takes place from Saturday, March 11, to Sunday, March 19, at the Philadelphia Convention Center, 1101 Arch Street. Single-day tickets are $28 if purchased online and $35 if purchased on site. Visit theflowershow.com.

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Troy Petenbrink is Metro Weekly's contributing writer for food and travel. He can be reached at thegaytraveler@gmail.com.