A Garden for All: Decompressing
By Janit Calvo
February 27, 2009.
The garden world here in Seattle was all a-buzz with the recent news of the Northwest Flower and Garden Show’s demise. Being both an exhibitor and a vendor, there was an opportunity to hear a few different perspectives – and to see how people deal with change.
Being in the thick of it, I held down two booths in the plant market with my miniature garden ideas, plants and products, as well as a separate display on the Skybridge. To be surrounded by the many different people who make up the Flower Show, it brought an interesting point of view. Here are some perspectives that I thought would be interesting to share.
The customers were greatly disappointed. Many mentioned that they were sad that it was all coming to an end. It’s interesting to note that 35% of the attendees have been coming to this show consistently, for 5 years or more. A lot of my customers quickly signed up for my mailing list knowing that they may lose track of me if there wasn’t a buyer for next year’s show. There was a frenzy in the air as if they thought all of the vendors and nurseries were going away too.
Some thought nothing was going to change. There were a couple of vendors who were talking about “next year’s show” and what they were going to try out, sign up for and sell. They occupied themselves by analyzing this year’s trends (yes, mini gardening was on their list) and were thinking about where their market was going. It was surprising to stand there and listen to them be so practical about it. Just ignore the big elephant in the room, eh?
Some just breezed through the show so they could say, “I was there.”
One of my customers was an interested buyer and mentioned that the asking price was completely out of range. The show could be re-built for much less money and quite easily by someone who knows what they are doing. It was a “slam-dunk” for this event planner. It was a good reminder that there is always someone willing to do any job – and to welcome it with open arms too.
I always find it interesting to see how others adapt to change. With change being the only constant, it’s surprising how many different ways we find to deal with it. Nature is change. Plants and trees are always growing and dying.
In the forest, when a large tree comes to the end of its lifespan and dies, it opens up the canopy and lets light shine through onto the forest floor. This gives a chance for the younger seedling and saplings to grow up and, just maybe, be a big tree too.