A tradition of our family is to attend the local Cleveland version of the Home and Garden show each year. Now that we have kids and our dream home, the relevance of the beautiful gardens and unique home improvement ideas allow me to fulfill my goals of a topiary garden the likes of Versailles would be jealous.
As we approached the IX Center, where the event is held yearly, on a cold and snowy afternoon, Bug (3.5) immediately recognized the place (despite last visiting in November 2011 at the Lego Kidsfest). Keep in mind, Bug was only 2.5 at the time, and is now nearly 4. A child’s mind just amazes me, as our son remembers the most intricate details of things that happened, in some cases, years ago. Our oldest son’s memory is total proof to my wife and I that taking our kids to experience things at a young age absolutely makes a huge impact on their development.
Even better was that normally I would think kids would cringe at the idea of walking around a bunch of impressive landscaping displays, homes, and vendors; however, our kids talked about it all week.
This year’s theme of the garden displays really surprised me, more than the normal excitement I get out of some orchids or succulents. Each garden was created around travel destinations of U.S. Landmarks.
Such gardens included one of Ohio’s major claims to fame, Cedar Point, and of course the nostalgic Boneville.
In addition to gardens of Fallingwater (which were not anything notable) some of the other highlights were the Biltmore Estate, which has long been on my list of places to visit.
New York’s Central Park…
…and Chicago’s Wrigley Field
And Americana would not be complete without a trip back to the Wild, Wild West.
I also rather enjoyed a nice greenhouse setup, with a variety of tropical plants and my favorite, orchids. Someday, I will have something similar on our property.
There are a bunch of things that just baffle me about the Cleveland Home and Garden Show each year.
1) How much time, effort, and money go into creating the garden exhibits? Local companies donate all of the labor and supplies to construct the elaborate gardens for the show. Grant it, the plants are for sale at the end of the show, but even so, a lot of money goes into building these scenes, when in all reality, they are an advertisement for the companies providing the services. Wonderful work, and the show would not be anything if not for the gardens, but it boggles my mind how the economics makes sense.
2) Along the same lines as time, effort, and money, each year there is at least 1 features house built inside the facility. Often times we have seen up to 3 houses showcasing not only home builders features, but interior design and furniture companies as well. This years home, which was the most elaborate and luxurious home we have ever seen at the show, was fully constructed within as little as 41 days. There is a cool time lapse video as you enter showing the progression of construction.
3) Where do they get so many flowers in full bloom in February? Lest you think Cleveland is the hot spot with our sub-freezing temperatures and plentiful piles of snow crystals, spring bulbs typically do not start to sprout until around April or May. Yet, all the wonderful plants are hot to trot and on display for the show. Which makes me wonder, how far did the plants have to travel for the show to be in full bloom?
How do your local Home and Garden shows compare to Cleveland’s?
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