Spring Flower Show Features Orchard and Vine

The Annual Spring Flower Show at MHC’s Botanic Garden will begin Saturday, March 3 and run through Sunday, March 18 in the Talcott Greenhouse. This horticultural event will showcase hundreds of spring-blossoming bulbs and plants, which will be displayed in the main show house.

With a theme of Orchard and Vine, this year’s show features a miniature vineyard planted with red and white grape vines, two apple trees, a pear tee, and a pergola set among flowering shrubs and plants. Visitors will also find fragrant hyacinths, freesia, narcissus, ipheion, pansies, daffodils, lachenalia, crocuses, tulips, snowdrops, primroses, cineraria, and the old cottage garden favorite salpiglossis (painted tongue).

This year’s show is unusual because of the absence of snow, said Russ Billings, greenhouse manager. Billings, who’s worked in the greenhouse for 30 years, said the warmer winter temperatures created extra challenges for his staff, who have had to slow down the growth of the bulbs leading up to the show.

Visitors may wish to explore other areas of the century-old Victorian-era Talcott Greenhouse. The greenhouse displays a documented, labeled, living collection of plants from around the world, maintained for research, educational, and aesthetic purposes. This collection includes orchids, bromeliads, cacti and succulents, ferns, aquatic plants, begonias, and ivies, as well as many other tropical, subtropical, and temperate plants. The warm, humid Conservatory, which contains larger tropical specimens such as banana plants, bamboo, ficus, and palms, is especially popular with visitors. Small citrus trees, coffee, anthuriums, and crotons may be found here as well.

The greenhouse is wheelchair accessible and the show is free and open to the public. Groups are welcome with advance notice. For more information or directions, please call 413-538-2116, or visit the Botanic Garden website.