January 15, 2016
Canada Blooms is 20 years old this March. To celebrate the occasion, the theme for this edition of Canada’s flower festival is ‘It’s a Party!’

“Each festival is an opportunity for all industry members to engage with their products and services to bring their best to put in front of over 200,000 attendees,” says general manager of Canada Blooms Terry Caddo. “By the time we open our doors, people are weary of winter and looking forward to the colour and excitement that horticulture brings to them. Each year, Canada Blooms enjoys over $3 million of media coverage, which it is leveraged to promote the industry.”

Canada Blooms takes place from Mar. 11 to 20 at the Direct Energy Centre in Toronto. It is co-located with the National Home Show.

The event has become Canada’s premier garden show, attracting people from all across North America. It now ranks as one of the top five shows of its kind in North America.

Following last year’s Canada Blooms, Mark Cullen wrote in his Toronto Star column, “Every year exit surveys tell us that the top reason that people come to Canada Blooms is to see these gorgeous gardens. And why not? If you were to have them built in your own yard, you would need almost an acre and it would cost more than $8 million.”

Landscape Ontario’s Garden Inspiration magazine will be handed out at the 20th Canada Blooms. The popular magazine is directed towards consumers; it offers inspiration in the joys and benefits of horticulture, and connects homeowners with members.

Of course, LO’s most visible presence is the garden. This year. Paul Brydges has designed a garden which will feature all the sectors represented by Landscape Ontario. The garden is named, ‘Choose Your Path!’ Brydges says he wants the garden to display all the great job opportunities available in horticulture.

It is expected that the garden will demonstrate not just opportunities with the sectors, but challenging and satisfying vocations that will provide comfortable livings. Brydges says, “We hope people will leave the garden inspired and that it helps, Choose Your Path!”

Mar. 17 will see Industry Night, when garden builders and association members gather for a special celebration at Canada Blooms. During the evening, awards and presentations will take place, along with networking and great food and drink.  

Director of Horticulture David Turnbull, says “A host of volunteers from all facets of the industry — growers, retailers, maintenance, lighting, gardeners, etc. — bring their enthusiasm, experience and energy to build and create the wow that translates into business in the coming year.”

He says Canada Blooms was created to stimulate and educate the public in the many benefits of horticulture in their lives. “Whether you are a newbie or old hand at our festival, we encourage you to mark off your calendar for the Mar. 4-10 to help volunteer to build our world-class event. We continue to be a great success as the result of excellent leadership, committed industry partners and enthusiastic volunteers. Come join in the journey and have fun with us!” says Turnbull.

Those interested in becoming a volunteer may contact David Turnbull at davidturnbull@canadablooms.com, or 416-447-8655, ext. 7730.

Turnbull says to make Canada Blooms a success it requires industry sponsor support. Those making an effort for the 20th anniversary festival are plant sponsors: Connon AVK, Connon CBV,Connon NVK, Flora Holland, J.C. Bakker, Jill Jensen Botanicals, Medallion Plants, Mori Nurseries, St. Williams Nursery, Uxbridge Nurseries, Verbinnen Nursery, Slappendel Greenhouses and Terra Nova Plants. Product sponsors are Brampton Brick, Exotic Garden Plants, Gro-Bark, Ogilvie Fixtures, Pick Ontario and Unilock.