Canada Blooms again in 2009

March 26, 2009
Spring came early in Toronto last month, both outdoors and inside at Canada Blooms, Canada’s largest flower and garden festival (click here to visit our photo gallery). The five-day festival delighted garden-lovers with a springtime paradise – particularly on Friday as the Festival welcomed the first day of spring. Now in its thirteenth year, more than 80,000 visitors enjoyed six acres of feature gardens in full bloom, more than 100,000 square feet of green-thumb shopping, over 200 hours of seminars, workshops and demonstrations, a special children’s garden and more.

“Each year visitors from Canada and beyond, enjoy the gardens, marketplace and educational features of Canada Blooms,” said Gerry Ginsberg, General Manager, Canada Blooms. “Again this year, all of the plant and building materials used to create the spectacular gardens of Canada Blooms will be reused and recycled following the Festival. The plants and flowers left-over will once again be donated to the City of Toronto.”

Left over blooms to be donated

The City of Toronto will receive approximately 600 flowers and plants that will go a number of the City of Toronto’s 10 long-term care homes so that seniors living in these locations could also receive a fresh, colourful bloom to brighten their day and living environment. Staff and volunteers will also deliver flowers to a number of clients of Cummer Lodge’s meals-on-wheels program and adult day program and clients served by the City’s homemakers and nurses services program to “add a bit of spring” to their homes.

Ginsberg adds, “We are particularly pleased to share the flowering bulbs and annuals with seniors who may not have been able to attend the festival.”

Flowering bulbs, trees and shrubs recovered from Canada Blooms will also be added to the outdoor garden at Cummer Lodge and Lakeshore Lodge, providing a safe, accessible, colourful outdoor space for residents, clients, their families and guests to enjoy. In addition, approximately 75 perennial shrubs and trees from Canada Blooms will be maintained at Downsview Park until the weather warms up and then planted in locations city-wide.

Canada Blooms is a not-for-profit volunteer-driven event which promotes awareness of horticulture and showcases outstanding floral and landscape products and services. To date, more than $500,000 in Canada Blooms’ show proceeds has been reinvested into community horticultural projects. This year’s proceeds from Canada Blooms will benefit the Toronto Botanical Gardens children’s programs.

Toronto Botanical Garden Children’s Programs fill an essential role in educating and inspiring urban children about the value and beauty of our natural world. Using exciting, hands-on experiences, these programs reveal the magic and science of planting, caring for and harvesting “youth-size” garden plots while exploring connections between people, plants and wildlife.

Award winning designs

Each year visitors and industry contributors to Canada Blooms are invited to participate in the Festival by voting for their favourite displays and gardens. This year, the People’s Choice award winners include:

• The Miracle-Gro Garden Box Challenge attracted many visitors to vote for their favourite celebrity-designed window boxes and front porch planters in a People’s Choice format. Out of six contestants, Rex Harrington of The National Ballet of Canada came out with the top design, receiving $1,000 from Scotts Miracle-Gro for his favourite charitable cause, Casey House Hospice.

• The People’s Garden – Consumer Choice winner was ‘Pulse: The Heart & Stroke Foundation of Ontario’ designed and built by Humber College Landscape Technician Program Garden.  Honourable mentions went to the Bienenstock Natural Playground, ‘Seasons’ by D. A. Gracey; ‘Green for Life’ by Landscape Ontario and Garden Creations of Ottawa.

• The Judges Choice Garden winner was ‘Connected: The Canadian Cancer Society Garden’ designed and built by Ronald Holbrook & Associates Landscape Architects Inc. and Royalty Landscaping.  An honourable mention was also awarded to Seasons designed by D.A. Gracey & Associates Ltd.

 “This year we built new partnerships and added highlights such as the Canadian Cancer Society’s Connected garden and the Grey Power Celebrity Stage,” adds Ginsberg. “Thanks to the tremendous support of our sponsors, dedicated staff and volunteers, we continue to be Canada’s largest garden and flower Festival and look forward to an even bigger event next year.”

Best Booth Awards

 Category Winning Garden
 The Sheridan Nurseries Award for Outstanding Garden, Small Size  Green Outdoor Room  McCartney Landscaping Inc., Sander Design
 The S.G. Ulbright Award for Outstanding Garden, Medium Size Connected: The Canadian Cancer Society Garden
 Ronald Holbrook & Associates Landscape Architects Inc., Royalty Landscaping
 The Gordon A. MacEachern Awardfor Outstanding Garden, Large Size  Pulse: Heart & Stroke Garden Humber College Landscape Technician Program
 Outstanding Interpretation of the Show Theme “A Celebration of Canadian Talent”  City of Toronto: Now and Then  City of Toronto
 Outstanding Use of Artistic Elements in a Garden  Urban Kaleidoscope  Landscapes by Lucin
 Outstanding Representation of Sponsor Requirements  The Home Depot Outdoor Living Central  Allweather Landscape Co. Ltd.
 Most Imaginative Garden Design  Bienenstock Natural Playground  Gardens for Living Inc.
 The Environmental Award  Outside the Box  b sq. landscape design studio
 Outstanding Use of Trees  Seasons  D.A.Gracey & Associates Ltd.
 Outstanding Use of Annuals and/or Perennials  Pulse: Heart & Stroke Garden  Humber College Landscape Technician Program
 The Laguna Water Garden Award for Outstanding Use of Water  G21  Simple Solutions Landscaping
 Outstanding Use of Natural Stone  G25  Near North
 Outstanding Use of Pre-Cast Pavers  One  Jodi M. Liptrot Landscape Design, Stone-Link
 Outstanding Use of Structure  G17  Elite Environments Inc.
 Outstanding Use of Walkways  G7

 Beth Edney, CLD; Creative Impressions Landscaping Ltd.
 Outstanding Outdoor Living Space  G33  Be-Leaf! Landscape Design; MCP Landscape Contractors
 Outstanding Outdoor Entertainment Area  Green for Life  Garden Creations of Ottawa Ltd.
 Universal Access Award  Bienenstock Natural Playground  Gardens for Living Inc.
 The Garden Club of Toronto Award for Best Overall Use of Colour  City of Toronto: Now and Then  City of Toronto
 The W.E. Bridgeman Award for Best Overall Use of Hard Landscape Elements  Connected: The Canadian Cancer Society Garden  Ronald Holbrook & Associates Landscape Architects Inc., Royalty Landscaping
 The Humber Nurseries Award for Best Overall Use of Plant Material  Green for Life  Garden Creations of Ottawa Ltd.
 The Leslie L. Solty Memorial Award for Best Overall Creativity in Garden Design  Bienenstock Natural Playground  Gardens for Living Inc.

The Landscape Ontario Award for Best Overall Quality of Workmanship
 G41  Dr. Landscape Inc.

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