March 15, 2011
Canada Blooms raises industry’s image
Members come together at Canada Blooms.
Tony DiGiovanni CHT
LO Executive Director

Canada Blooms Flower and Garden Festival has one purpose: To raise awareness for the economic, environmental, aesthetic, therapeutic, lifestyle, health and spiritual benefits of horticulture and floriculture.  

There is no better way to stimulate interest and demand for the industry’s creativity, skill, products or services than by inspiring the public emotionally through the creation of spectacular gardens and floral displays. In the last 15 years, Canada Blooms has directly touched over one million people, creating impressions that last a lifetime. No other form of communication, marketing or advertising has the ability to generate lifetime memories.  

In addition, Canada Blooms has indirectly influenced millions of people through photographs, television shows, media coverage, magazines and word of mouth. Every time an image of a Canada Blooms garden or floral display is viewed, ideas are generated. Many of those ideas are then copied and executed, which benefits the industry as a whole.  

As a festival, Canada Blooms is much different than other events. It is motivated by passion and service. It enjoys the participation of hundreds of volunteers. In fact, it could not happen without volunteer contribution.  

It also has a unique business model. Most festivals are for-profit businesses. Canada Blooms is a non-profit organization with a single purpose. Where most shows and festivals sell space to exhibitors, Canada Blooms rents the Direct Energy Centre at the CNE Grounds in Toronto and promptly gives away two-thirds of the space for the creation of the gardens, floral displays, non-profit horticulture groups and educational activities. If the show makes money, substantial amounts are given away to support community-related horticultural projects. In this way, Canada Blooms continues to achieve its mandate to promote the joys and benefits of horticulture and floriculture.

In past 15 years, the festival has supported over $600,000 worth of community projects. Not only does the festival provide a conduit for the industry to promote itself, it also “tells the story” of our industry’s generosity and contribution ethic.  

Canada Blooms is the best vehicle to bring together at one event all those who have a passion for horticulture and floriculture.   

Last year Landscape Ontario’s Green for Life garden experience was one of the highlights of my experience at LO. The garden build illustrated in a microcosm, what the association is all about. Those of you involved in the project know exactly of what I am talking about. The project started with a dream and end goal. The goal inspired hundreds of volunteers to contribute their time, resources, sweat and hard work. Each person brought something unique to the project. Members learned from other members.  Tools and ideas were shared openly. Problems were solved collectively. The range in skill, experience and ability was broad and diverse, yet everyone contributed as much as they were able, keeping the end goal in mind. In the process, everyone gained in knowledge, professionalism, mutual mentorship and friendships. Everyone had a great time and a feeling of satisfaction and camaraderie. The resulting garden gave much pleasure and inspiration to thousands of people who walked through.  

This year Landscape Ontario will build a 9,000 sq. ft. garden. We need all the help we can get. Please call me if you want to pitch-in. Join us in showing the public the many ways in which their lives can be enriched and enhanced through horticulture and floriculture.   

Canada Blooms is at the Direct Energy Centre from Mar. 16 to 20. Please see for more information. 
Tony DiGiovanni may be reached at