A Personal Perspective from the Plantsman, Nicholas Staddon

“What really is the Glue?” … I started my plant career when I was about five. In those days it was being dragged into the garden, helping to weed and being involved in anything that would avoid my sister and me from bickering. Some things never change with children. Today I can’t wait to get a few hours working with the plants, and as we are just coming into May, watching the clutches of young birds make their debut into the world. I have several nests of my feathered friends in the garden and go to great lengths to leave them in peace. When they do leave the nest for the first day or so, I do get to enjoy them, and of course, their parents. All too soon, everyone goes in their various directions. I am working hard to build a garden that encourages everyone, matter not if there are feathered or wear a fur coat, to stay. What is it that brings these wonderful creatures together? … It’s the plants.

And very much in the same vein: What is it that brings the design community and landscape professional together, or anyone that is involved in this business? … It’s the plants. The plants are the umbilical cord that joins us all together. And as the history book confirms, we will go to the ends of the earth to search out the right plant. Recently Village Nurseries hosted their second Horticulture Encounter in Orange County. Industry professionals came from far and wide for this amazing event.  The next Horticultural Encounter, starting May 9th through May 27th, is at the Miramar landscape center, just north of San Diego. It’s a cornucopia of plants. The displays are in place for two weeks and I promise, you will be dazzled by the selection, quality, and the collection of ideas. Come with an open mind. You will see new plants, as well as be reminded about plants you have not used in some time. Suzie Wiest, well known for her passion and plant knowledge, will host you on an individual basis or as a group from your office. She has a unique way of quietly walking you through the themed displays, talking about what you are looking at, and of course, answering all of your questions. On Friday May 13th is the Open House, which is the big “hurrah” of the Horticulture Encounter. Village Nurseries has brought in some pretty snappy speakers, including the visionary of Flower Carpet® Roses, Anthony Tesselaar, and their own Plantsman, me! The team from Garden Design Magazine, which in my humble opinion is one of the best gardening magazines on the market, will be there with an amazing offer for those attending the Open House. And like every great get together, the food is the cat’s meow. The other exciting part of the day is that you are in the company of like-minded people. You will see old friends and for sure, make new ones. I love the plants, always have. But love the people too, and that’s where they all come together … at the Horticulture Encounter.

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