By Will Sulahian and Marion McParland
Grab your sneakers and sunscreen and get ready for an adventure at FDR Park in South Philadelphia as you discover the 2021 PHS Philadelphia Flower Show, “HABITAT,” Nature’s Masterpiece" taking place Saturday, June 5 through Sunday, June 13. Let this year's Flower Show transport you into a horticultural world of wonder. Here are a few highlights you won’t want to miss!
Gardeners, green thumbs, and anyone who enjoys being surrounded by nature will not want to miss the chance to see the artistic visions of this year’s 75 world-class designers on a living, 15-acre canvas. With more exhibitors and displays than in prior years, this outdoor Flower Show will highlight seasonal flora, with the backdrop of huge trees, open spaces, and warm sunshine!
Eight new-to-the-Show designers are making their debut this year. Be on the lookout for these fresh voices as they share their thoughts on habitat. One of these exhibitors is Kristin Horst, of FLOWER SHOP!!! in West Philadelphia. The message in her exhibit, “Dear Community,” is about caring for your habitat, with a focus on the disparate ways people live in this city. She hopes visitors will be empowered to speak to your council person and state representatives about cleaning up the forgotten neighborhoods. “Philly isn’t going to sparkle unless we all pitch in,” says Horst, pictured above.
Delight in patterns and colors of hundreds of butterflies creating a living watercolor around you. Let these gentle beauties light softly on your shoulder, or land in the palm of your hand. Tickets are available in advance or onsite for this remarkable opportunity to connect with nature.
Nestled among majestic oaks, elms, and maple trees, an enchanted realm awaits...for one special week in June, the Enchanted Forest beckons all Flower Show visitors to enjoy its magic. Don’t miss the large-scale floral sculptures evoking the unique homes, habitats, and hidden lives of mythical creatures who live and play in this secret world. Be sure to keep an eye out for residents like Okra the ogre!
Learn more about trees with a Bartlett Tree Walk, daily at 1 and 4 p.m. at the Show. PHS Tree Tenders and Bartlett Arborists will lead free, guided tours through FDR Park to profile some of the oldest and most fascinating trees. Want to walk the tour at your own pace? Scan a QR code (available at the Bartlett exhibit) to access the map and walk at your leisure.
“Family Frolic” is your families’ best bet for Saturday, June 12, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The special event tailored for young families is free with your Flower Show admission. Say “Cheese” with Gritty, the Philadelphia Flyers hockey team’s beloved mascot.
Tap into your creativity with the Power of Paint Academy, watch performances by the Pennsylvania Ballet and Orchestra 2001. And don't miss the natural
spectacle of butterflies being released in the park at 12:45 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Pull out your plumes and petals and dress for a night of “Hort Couture” under the stars at Flowers After Hours, Saturday, June 12, 8 – 11:30 p.m. Dance among the dahlias to the tunes of SNACKTIME Philly and DJ Aktive. Enjoy free tastings and samplings, celebrate Pride Month, and don’t miss the fireworks at 10 p.m. This event is exclusively for guests ages 21 and over.
No matter which day or what event(s) you choose to attend, there are countless opportunities to discover, learn, and enjoy all that this year’s Flower Show is offering at FDR Park.