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Garden show highlights statewide growing trends

By: Gloria Young Home & Garden
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Visitors to next week’s California State Flower & Garden show at Cal Expo will find plenty of information suited for local growing conditions. “It will be much more of a reflection of the valley and coastal range down to Los Angeles (than the San Francisco Flower & Garden Show),” show owner and director Sherry Larsen said. “It is a state-wide show, (representing) all of Southern California, the Monterey peninsula and the valley — mostly Mediterranean-type of climate and some desert-like.” This is show’s first year and one of the sponsors is California Garden Clubs, Inc. “They have 22,000 members statewide,” Larsen said. “All of the local chapters will be present at the show.” For garden club members, there will actually be a “show within a show” — a standard judging exhibition. It is open to anyone who wants to enter an exhibit, Larsen said. “It can be a floral arrangement, cut specimen or grown plant.” Local gardeners can also attend a judges symposium taking place April 7-9 at the nearby Sacramento Doubletree Hotel. The flower and garden show will feature seminars, workshops, vendor booths and vignettes by landscape designers. There will be an orchid market, plant market, bulbs, trees, aquatic plants and koi. Among the two dozen presenters are Gary Gragg, creator and host of HGTV’s “Superscapes,” Rene van Rems, a master floral designer; master rosarian Dan Bifano; award-winning garden author Amy Stewart and master judge and floral designer Tony Todesco. Sue Bennett, president of the Sierra Foothills Rose Society, has been busy recruiting members from rose societies to work a membership booth. She also has a hand in the Kids Growing Strong booth, sponsored by California Garden Clubs. “It’s a program to help children learn about gardening, eating healthy and exercising,” she said. Bennett is organizing a book booth that will sell new and used books as a fundraiser for the Kids Growing Strong effort. “I got involved because California Garden Clubs, Inc. got involved,” Bennett said about the show. “I think it is exciting because it is here — it’s on this side of the bridge. We have different needs. Our gardening weather is so different than San Francisco weather. So this is good for this side of the bay.” Among the landscape designers creating a vignette are Max and Joanne Naegele of Foothill Design and Landscape in Meadow Vista. “The theme is Flight of Fancy,” Joanne Naegele said. “We took nostalgia and went a step ahead of that and just did a wonderful potting shed. You step through an iron portal into a courtyard and all around you is a sense of antiquity and whimsy.” Natural stone adds a feeling of age and permanence, she said. The Naegeles’ exhibit will have a water feature made from recycled materials. And there’s a vegetable garden “where you nibble on herbs and vegetables,” she said. Joanne Naegele, a landscape designer for both commercial and residential properties, is also a garden coach and educator. Max Naegele does architectural drafting. “We are pretty excited,” Joanne said about the show. “We’re really looking forward to it. We have a great vignette — a lot of personality, a lot of texture. The stonework is just fabulous.” The Naegeles are well known for their exhibits at the Auburn spring and fall home shows. Gloria Young can be reached at gloriay@goldcountrymedia.com --------- California State Flower & Garden Show at Cal Expo When: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, April 8; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, April 9 and 10; and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, April 11. Where: Cal Expo, Pavilion Building Admission: $15 or $18 for four-day pass, $5 for youth 13-17, free for ages 12 and under; and $12 (four-day pass) for garden club members Web site: calstategardenshow.com