“Island Melodies” is this year’s theme for the Standard Flower Show on March 5-6th at the Marco Island Center for the Arts. The show, presented by the Calusa Garden Club of Marco Island, will be bursting with colors and creative interpretation of your favorite “Island Melodies.” Take some lyrics from Sammy Hagar’s song, “All You Need is an Island,” (All we need is an island, a big ol’ sandy beach, palm trees for shade…) and mix in some classics from Jimmy Buffett’s “Margaritaville,” “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” and “Green Flash at Sunset.” Or, you may prefer the style of Seals & Crofts’ “Summer Breeze,” or, perhaps, a mellow tune from John Denver’s “Sunshine on my Shoulder.” Whatever your favorite melody may be, you will definitely agree that Marco Island is theperfect setting for this Flower Show.
Calusa Garden Club members are nervous with excitement, and busy making all the preparations needed to ensure that plants will be in prime condition for the show. For the floral designers, it is a challenge to nail their interpretation just right, and score the most points from the judges. Take the song “High Tide” by Blondie, a design incorporating water. Will it be easier with the song, “Green Flash at Sunset,” by Jimmy Buffett? The horticulture exhibitors are faced with the same ordeal trying to comply with all the judging rules.
Sandy Wallen, a Calusa Garden member and exhibitor, will be tackling the challenges presented by “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” trying to match the unique theme with the staging.
Juliette Flasche, a garden club member and a seasonedjudge, is looking for balance – Is the design asymmetrical? Does the design conform to the title? Is it a traditional or a creative design?
A Flower Show is a competitive exhibition of floral design and horticultural exhibits. A Standard Flower Show must include a Design Division and a Horticultural Division. Both are judged by a panel of judges who are approved by the National Garden Club, and their decision is final. All entries must comply with a strict set of rules. For example, “no artificial flowers, foliage, fruits or vegetables” are permitted in the Design Division. In horticulture, it requires that all plant materials must be in the exhibitor’s possession for no fewer than 90 days prior to the show. Plant entries must contain both the common name and scientificname. In this division, there is something for everyone to enter. You can enter a container grown plant, cuttings from your favorite flower, and even the shrubs and trees in your landscape.
With our beautiful weather here on Marco Island, gardening is a year-round outdoor leisure activity. Garden club members are all horticulturalist for 365 days of the year. They weed, transplant, water, trim, mulch, attend plant workshops and exchanges. Members of the Flower Show Committee met over the summer to come up with a unique theme, and in February the garden club members all come together to work out the final details of the March Flower Show.
Each show is unique and different, and it is an exciting adventure for everyone. Every member wants the flower show to be the bestit can be. The pay-off comes at judging time. Will it be the much-coveted blue ribbon? Awards aside, the Flower Show is both a learning and fun experience for everybody. It is about sharing your art with the public; it is a forum for garden club members to spread the joys of gardening and meet prospective members. It is also an important venue to inform the public about the club’s many civic projects, such as Tommy Barfield’s Junior Gardener’s Program; Blue Star Memorial Marker; two scholarship camperships to Camp Wekiva; Calusa Butterfly Garden; and flowers in public places, just to name a few. For more information on Calusa Garden Club, please contact Judy Kouhi at 239-642-4645 or Linda Colombo at 239-642-6845, or visit the website at www.calusa.org. Please join us – we welcome new members.