March 15, 2009
Volunteers have been busy for weeks preparing for Canada’s most prestigious flower and garden festival, Canada Blooms.

Over the past 13 years members of Landscape Ontario have donated thousands of hours to ensure Canada Blooms maintains its showpiece status. This year has seen even more involvement.

Tim Kearney CLP, LO’s second vice-president, and his company Garden Creations of Ottawa, is spearheading the construction of LO’s 4,000 square foot garden. It will greet visitors at the entrance to Canada Blooms, featuring a 32-foot oak tree as its centrepiece.
This display will help launch LO’s new branding initiative Green for Life. “I believe that this display will do more for educating the public on our association than ever before.  This, combined with our amazing branding initiative, will become the buzz of the show,” said Kearney.  

Volunteers will hand out the new expanded magazine Garden Inspiration, which brings together the Canada Blooms show guide with a complete listing of LO members and the story behind Green for Life. Landscape Ontario’s publishing team took on the task to create the improved show guide, which this year will be given out free to visitors to the festival. As well postcards will be handed out. Each card contains information on how consumers can connect with the professional members of LO.

The LO exhibit will also showcase the amazing community work that LO chapters offer to communities across Ontario. The branches of the tree direct visitors to all points of the compass where Landscape Ontario chapters feature recent community projects. Every chapter will have ‘pockets’ in this large garden to help show interesting pictures and vignettes of the members’ amazing community work.  Charlie Dobbin, horticultural director of Canada Blooms (see cover photo), has been busy preparing the plants that will be displayed at the many gardens at the Canada Blooms. The painstaking task of forcing blooms has come under the guidance of Dobbin for the past five years. With numerous volunteers, the plants are cared for and then delivered to the garden builders at the convention centre, all in time for Canada’s celebration of horticulture from March 18 to 22.