Get Growing: Plants Galore for Northwest Gardens

Get Growing: Plants Galore for Northwest Gardens

Here in the Northwest gardeners are blessed with incredible growing conditions for a wealth of plants, both native and exotic. But how can you choose the best plants for your garden from such abundance?

Our horticulturists, designers and garden writers will help you hone in on the right plants for your garden conditions—wet or dry, sunny or shady, large or small. Discover a world of plants you might never have considered, or find the perfect plants for a real problem spot. Once you integrate “right plant/right place” into your garden, it will all come together beautifully.


Be sure to download our full Show Preview Guide! It will be available online to download in December.

The show preview guide will include the full Seminar Schedule, Seminars by Category, as well are other show highlights and show info.

The Seminars by Category are listed in chronological order. Each of the seminars listed below will tell you the speaker name, seminar topic, seminar description, date, time, seminar location and if there is a book signing afterwards.

Please check the full Seminar Schedule for a full list of ALL our seminars.

Sensational, Easy-care Succulents in Containers 

Debra Lee Baldwin—Best-selling photojournalist and author, Designing with Succulents and Succulent Container Gardens

Garden photojournalist and award-winning author Debra Lee Baldwin shows eye-catching ideas for portable gardens that range from vertical displays and hostess gifts to multi-plant arrangements. “There’s a wider range of succulents available now than ever before,” Debra says, “and all do well in containers. In fact, potentially large ones stay small longer when their roots are confined.” And if your succulents are leggy and untidy, you’ll discover how restore their original beauty.

Wednesday, Feb 7 at 11:15 am / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

Making Their Debut: Best New Plants for Northwest Gardens

Nicholas StaddonHorticultural Consultant, former Director of New Plants for Monrovia Growers

Nurserymen and growers are cranking up their creative juices finding and breeding new plants to enjoy. But which ones will work best in your garden? Horticulturist Nicholas Staddon has a discerning eye when it comes to the new and recent plant introductions. Join him has he shows off some of the latest must-have plants that work well in Northwest gardens. Best of all—they will be available in garden centers in 2018. Nicholas does the research so you don’t have to!

Wednesday, Feb 7 at 11:45 am / DIY Stage

8 Tips to Growing Great Roses in the Pacific Northwest

Christian Bédard—Research Director for Weeks Roses

Growing roses is easier than most gardeners think—especially when you know the 8 tips for rose-growing success. In this seminar, Christian Bédard, research director for Weeks Roses, will share his professional tips for growing healthy roses that will be the envy of the neighborhood. From choosing the right roses and selecting the right spot for them, to planting tips, fertilizing, watering and pruning, Christian’s tips will have your roses blooming beautifully this summer!

Wednesday, Feb 7 at 6:45 pm / Hood Room

Plant the Best for Less! Money-Saving Tips for Plants and Design Ideas

Kerry Ann Mendez—Award-winning designer, Perennially Yours and author, The Budget Wise Gardener

Discover a wealth of ideas for getting the best price and value for exceptional plants. The plant sources and strategies will surprise you! Also covered are striking design concepts for eye-popping, pollinator-friendly landscapes requiring less maintenance and water. And container gardening takes on a whole new spin with these cost-effective, creative ideas!

Thursday, Feb 8 at 10:00 am / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

25 Top-Performing Garden Plants

Bob Hyland—2018 Show Judge, designer and horticulturist, Hyland Garden Design

Portland plantsman Bob Hyland has gardened in a variety of hardiness zones on both coasts and understands the value of great plant picks. Top-performing plants offer multi-season interest with flowers, foliage, bark, good architecture and form, and no-fuss maintenance. Bob discusses his favorite small trees, shrubs, perennials, grasses, and annuals and highlights their adaptability to the climate zones of the Pacific Northwest, wildlife value, and overall pizzazz.

Thursday, Feb 8 at 10:30 am / Rainier Room

Designing with Succulents in the Pacific Northwest

Debra Lee Baldwin—Best-selling photojournalist and author, Designing with Succulents and Succulent Container Gardens

Bestselling author Debra Lee Baldwin, widely known as the “Queen of Succulents,” gives her perspective on the surging popularity of these “plants that drink responsibly,” not only in warm, dry regions of the US, but also in cool, wet climates like ours. Always entertaining and informative, Debra shows how to select, care for, propagate and beautifully combine numerous succulents to create eye-catching, easy-care planters, gifts, garden projects and more.

Thursday, Feb 8 at 12:30 pm / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

37 Native Gems for Northwest Gardens

Mark Turner—Owner, Turner Photographics and co-author, Trees and Shrubs of the Pacific Northwest

More than 5,000 species of plants are native to the Pacific Northwest, from delicate annuals to towering conifers. Learn about a few showy and garden-worthy selections for both spotlight and problem areas of your garden. Virtually any garden conditions —wet shade, dry shade, sun-baked west-facing slope—or garden design needs—attractive front entry, prickly barrier, or wildlife garden—there are native plants to solve your problems! Stunning photography will show you how these natives might fit into your personal landscape.

Friday, Feb 9 at 10:30 am / Rainier Room / Book signing to follow

Great Plants Adapted to Pacific Northwest Climates

Paul Bonine—Co-owner, Xera Plants and co-author, Gardening in the Pacific Northwest
Amy Campion—Unabashed Plant Nerd and co-author, Gardening in the Pacific Northwest

For many years, we learned to adjust conditions to suit the plants we wanted to grow. Now with climate change and the desire to use our resources more responsibly, we are learning to choose our plants to suit our conditions. We will discuss the array of plants—both native and exotic—that deal beautifully with our wet winters and dry summers, as well as other idiosyncrasies of northwestern climates.

Friday, Feb 9 at 11:45 am / Rainier Room / Book signing to follow

Great Plant Picks: Must-have Plants for Beautiful Containers

Great Plant Picks: Must-have Plants for Beautiful Containers

It is hard not to love container gardening. Containers of all sizes, colors and shapes add pizazz and beauty into any size patio or balcony, and with thoughtful selection can offer years of enjoyment. Learn about some of the best container plants and great techniques for making beautiful combinations. The Great Plant Picks education program highlights plants that are especially well adapted to our climate and provide a long season of interest. Even better, these are plants that have been vetted by the experts and are available in local nurseries!

Friday, Feb 9 at 1:45 pm / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

GARDEN 101: Stars of Summer Gardens

Lilies: The Queen of Fragrant Summer Flowering Bulbs

Rizaniño “Riz” Reyes—Owner, RHR Horticulture & Landwave Gardens and landscape manager, McMenamins

Clematis for Everyone

Laura Watson—Master Gardener, Master Pruner and ‘Clemaniac’

Including Gorgeous Roses in Your Garden

Nita-Jo Rountree—Author, Growing Roses in the Pacific Northwest

Ah, summer. It will be here before we know it, along with the peak of blooms in our gardens. If you don’t have lilies, roses and clematis in your garden, discover some of the best varieties you’ll surely want to grow. Horticulturist Riz Reyes shares his favorite lilies that allow you to have lilies blooming in your garden all summer long. “Clemaniac” Laura Watson will showcase the splendor of clematis and their amazing variety in color, shape, bloom time, and growth habit. And author Nita-Jo Rountree shows how to incorporate disease-free roses that are a delight for the senses, along with ideas for beautiful companion plants. Take their advice and add these summer stars to your garden. And of course, they all look wonderful in bouquets!

Friday, Feb 9 at 2:45 pm / Rainier Room / Book Signing to follow

Breaking the Habit: Confessions of a Former Annual Color Grower

Janet Sluis—Horticulturist and Curator of the Sunset Western Garden Collection

Annual color represents the largest segment of plants sold today, but many of these plants come with an environmental cost, or waste of resources. Fortunately, breeders are fast at work introducing colorful grasses, shrubs and longer blooming perennials, which provide a more sustainable approach to color in the garden. See which longer blooming perennials and brighter shrubs have performed well in Sunset’s organic test garden. You won’t even miss those petunias.

Friday, Feb 9 at 5:30 pm / Hood Room

The Ancient Art of Bonsai in the Modern World

Anthony Fajarillo—Co-owner, Redwood Builders, blogger, and author, Wisdom Tree for the Digital Eden

Bonsai is an ancient Chinese horticultural practice that has been practiced for over 2,000 years. It is a miniaturized representation of nature itself; it allows you to bring nature into your home or workspace for calming enjoyment. Discover the power of the ancient art of bonsai to help you increase awareness, and to satisfy your primal desire to connect with nature in our hurried and information loaded digital world.

Friday, Feb 9 at 6:45 pm / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

Shop with a Pro: Nick’s Plant Picks from the Garden Show Plant Market

Nicholas StaddonHorticultural Consultant, former Director of New Plants for Monrovia Growers

In 2017 we let Nicholas Staddon roam the Garden Show in search of his best plant picks available at the show. His discoveries were stunning and delighted showgoers with his unusual must-have recommendations. By popular demand, he’s back! Join Nicholas for an insider look at plants you simply must take home with you, from bulbs, veggies, perennials, conifers, woody ornamentals and more. Nicholas has done the leg work, so you don’t have to!

Saturday, Feb 10 at 10:00 am / DIY Stage

Flowers All Summer: Annuals for Color, Cutting and Yes, Less Work!

C.L. Fornari—Author, Coffee for Roses and The Cocktail Garden Hour and co-host, Plantrama Podcast

Flowering annuals delight the eye and lift spirits for months, yet some people mistakenly think that they are more work than other plants. The Garden Lady will show some of the many colorful, easy annuals for gardens and containers. She will share her tips for one-time fertilization and planting large containers. Attendees will learn about flowers for hummingbirds, cutting, fragrance and the dinner table.

Saturday, Feb 10 at 12:30 pm / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

Don’t Snub the Shrub! Hardworking Superstars of the Garden

Christina Salwitz—Award-winning co-author, Fine Foliage and Gardening with Foliage First

It’s time to embrace the ‘shrub phase of your life’! Often called the ‘Cinderellas of the landscape,’ shrubs are some of the hardest working, yet often overlooked superstars in the garden. Let landscape designer Christina Salwitz inspire you with innovative ways to use evergreen and deciduous shrubs to transform a ho-hum garden into an eye-popping, year-round masterpiece. Discover amazing new varieties that will provide long-lasting color, texture, flowers, and form all while being low-maintenance!

Saturday, Feb 10 at 1:45 pm / Hood Room / Book signing to follow

Beautiful, Multi-Purpose Plants for Today’s Busy Gardener

Janet SluisHorticulturist and Curator of the Sunset Western Garden Collection

In smaller yards, plants need to earn their spot. We want them to cook with, for crafting into cocktails, to create floral arrangements and indoor decor, all while simultaneously providing habitat and sustenance for pollinators. Can they also be sustainable, low maintenance, regionally appropriate, and look amazing? Learn which new plants can stand up to these tough requirements, and how to make the most of them once they are in your garden.

Saturday, Feb 10 at 4:30 pm / Rainier Room

Banishing Boring Yards with Plants that Wow!

Steve Smith, CPH—Owner, Sunnyside Nursery and garden writer AKA “The Whistling Gardener”

Ever feel like your garden “stalls out” during a few months of the year? Or are you looking to start your garden over from scratch? Enjoy a month-by-month guide of easy-to-find, easy-to-grow plants that will keep your yard blooming and interesting all year long. This seminar will give your yard the ever-elusive year-round interest that we all seek. Banish your boring gardening months with Steve’s list of plants and garden tips that will not only be beautiful, they are easily achievable!

Saturday, Feb 10 at 7:00 pm / Rainier Room

Hedges & Edges: Living Fences that Work

EagleSong Evans Gardener—Owner, herbalist and educator, RavenCroft Garden

“Good fences do good neighbors make!” Robert Frost knew the necessity and value of a good fence. A living fence that works bringing neighbors together, producing food and habitat for human and animal alike, adds wealth and beauty to any neighborhood. In this seminar you will discover which plants make successful hedges, the different kinds of hedges and the value and ROI of each one, and how to maintain a hedge for a long and vital working life at minimal expense.

Sunday, Feb 11 at 4:30 pm / Rainier Room