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Gina Tedesco
Photographs courtesy Chicago Flower & Garden Show 

Spring makes a bold entrance in Chicago with two-dozen stylish gardens brimming with gorgeous florals and the latest garden designs at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show, presented by Mariano's, March 14-22, 2015 at Chicago's Navy Pier. This unique show brings more roll-up-your-sleeves good ideas than ever before amid the sweet aroma of thousands upon thousands of lovely blooms!

More than just eye candy, this show - the only consumer event of its kind in the Midwest - helps gardeners of all experience levels get fresh, new ideas to make their yards the envy of their neighborhoods.

New this year: not one, but two amazing rose gardens! One will focus on climbing and shrub varieties, the other, a sea of miniatures.

Additionally, a new garden features latest varieties from Proven Winners, which seeks out superior plants from more than five dozen plant breeders around the world!

Another new offering, just in time for St. Patty's Day: an Irish heritage garden complete with Irish stone, backdrops and other elements to create an Irish countryside garden experience.
In addition, this year will feature more for children to do in the "Kids Activity Garden", where youngsters play and learn about the natural world.

The two-dozen featured garden builders include Aquascape, Christy Webber Landscapes, City Escape Garden Center & Design Studio, Leisure Woods Inc., Lurvey Landscape Supply, Premier Landscape, Rich's Foxwillow Pines, First Choice Landscape and Stuifbergen Bloembollen Export B.V.

In addition, the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences will create a garden featuring the students' concept of "Do Green. Do Good," the 2015 Chicago Flower & Garden Show theme. The American Institute of Floral Designers will provide more of their fresh, new concepts for creating unforgettable arrangements - some with amazing whimsy, while stylized tablescapes and stunning window boxes created by the Garden Clubs of Illinois bring further inspiration. 

"Do Green. Do Good." involves realistic, do-it-yourself solutions to inspire, educate and motivate the next generation of gardeners. Highlights of the new, 2015 show include:

  • Two-dozen breathtaking featured gardens demonstrating how garden beauty can be functional and sustainable, as well as how gardeners and homeowners can "Do Green. Do Good."
  • "Gardening Live Stage" and "Seminar Series" make learning fun while addressing trends and the hottest new techniques in gardening for the upcoming season.
  • "Garden Gourmet" culinary demonstrations put "farm to table" in practice while filling Navy Pier's festival hall with delectable aromas!
  • "Kids' Activity Garden" inspires youngsters of all ages with hands-on sessions in which children can learn about growing their own vegetables from seeds, then try their hand at sowing seeds into a container they can take home and tend before planting during the warmer months.
  • Photography competition, presented by Birds & Blooms Magazine gets in focus by capturing florals and landscapes in unique ways. (Note: deadline for entries is Feb. 2; see for more details)
  • "Tablescapes" exhibit inspires ideas for special and family events - or even just a romantic dinner for two through florals and natural materials.
  • "Art of Floral," featuring interpretive floral designs, showcases jaw-dropping arrangements by America's best floral artists.
  • The Marketplace, with more than 100 exhibitors, is a garden-shopper's paradise, offering everything from practical tools to fountains and flowers and plants for purchase.
  • National cake decorating competition with the Retail Bakers Association of America is like "Cake Boss" on steroids - live during the closing weekend of the show.
  • "Evening in Bloom," the show's signature charity fundraiser is held from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Friday, March 13, the night before the show's official opening and is hosted by Nina and Bob Mariano.

With support from presenting sponsor Mariano's, major sponsors in 2015 include Subaru, the official vehicle of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show; Wintrust Community Banks, the show's official bank, and NPL. Official sponsors are Julie One-Call System, Pro Ecuador, Sleep Number, PRP Wine International and Embassy Suites - Chicago Downtown/Lakefront. Official suppliers are Central Sod Farms and Unilock. Feature garden sponsors are Eli's Cheesecake Chicago, MQ Construction, West Side Tractor Sales, M&J Asphalt, Vermeer Midwest, For Love of Roses, Star Roses, The ABL Group and Proven Winners. Official media sponsors are 93.9 MYfm, "Chicago's Very Own" WGN Radio, Birds & Blooms, Chicagoland Gardening Magazine and Garden Design magazine. 

"Bob and I are so thrilled to announce our continued partnership with the Chicago Flower & Garden Show for 2015," says Nina Mariano, co-chairing the Evening in Bloom charity event with her husband, Bob Mariano. "It's something we're proud to be affiliated with, since our missions go hand-in-hand for the promotion of physical and emotional well-being. We can only promise that this show will be bigger and better - so get ready to be blown away!"

The 2014 Chicago Flower & Garden Show drew upwards of 40,000 people to Navy Pier in search of spring color and fragrance during winter's frigid, yawning chill. Following the show's close, Abruscato and his Flower Show Productions team, producers of year-round activities of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show, donated much of the show's plants and material - valued at more than $65,000 - to nonprofit organizations and institutions around Chicagoland.

"The Chicago Flower & Garden Show is more than just something pretty to look at after a long, cold Chicago winter," says Abruscato. "We take our 'Do Green. Do Good.' theme to heart by repurposing as much material from the show as possible and showing, through workshops, classes, featured gardens and activities for all ages how they can enjoy and help sustain the living world around them."

For information about year-round events and activities - including advance tour group registration, discount tickets, hotel specials, travel details and schedules for the 2015 Chicago Flower & Garden Show - visit Find the show on social media for up-to-the-minute details and special incentives at and on Twitter @ChicagoFlower.

About Flower Show Productions, Inc.
Flower Show Productions, Inc. is the production company for the annual Chicago Flower & Garden Show at Navy Pier (March 14-22, 2015), Lake County Fair in Grayslake, Ill. For year-round inspiration and great ideas, please visit, and find us on Facebook at and on Twitter @ChicagoFlower.

About Roundy's
Roundy's is a leading grocer in the Midwest with nearly $4.0 billion in sales and more than 23,000 employees. Founded in Milwaukee in 1872, Roundy's operates 167 retail grocery stores and 114 pharmacies under the Pick 'n Save, Rainbow, Copps, Metro Market and Mariano's retail banners in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois. Roundy's is committed to helping the communities its stores serve through the Roundy's Foundation.

Do Green. Do Good. There's much more to be done! Kindly consider the environment before printing.

Posted March 13, 2015

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