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Spring Garden Festival Presented by Country Landscapes May 10-13 features 500+ plant varieties, workshops, family activities and more


The fifth annual Spring Garden Festival presented by Country Landscapes will be held at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden May 10-13, 2018. This four-day pop-up retail festival includes nearly 500 limited-edition plant varieties, a garden art and merchandise fair, educational sessions, family-friendly garden activities, drop-in demonstrations and more.

The plant sale features a curated collection of new, unusual or hard-to-find perennials, with an emphasis on natives and perennials that support pollinators and other wildlife. Selections also include small-space plants for gardening indoors and in containers; herbs and vegetables; ornamentals geared toward front yards; an extensive selection of succulents, miniature ferns and houseplants, and other terrarium-friendly plants, as well as pre-designed gardens sold in trays that cover 32 square feet and include a free demonstration.

Friday through Sunday, access to the plant sale, garden art and merchandise fair and drop-in activities is included with the regular cost of admission (members free; adults $10; military and seniors $9; students 4-17 $7; children 3 and under free). Mothers receive free admission on Mother’s Day (Sunday, May 13) thanks to Principal. Ticketed events and workshops require preregistration and an additional fee.

The Festival begins with an opening night ticketed event from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, May 10. Attendees will enjoy early access to the plant sale, hors d’oeurves and cocktails and participate in a butterfly release. Tickets are available at
Events continue Friday through Sunday as follows:

Friday, May 11: National Public Gardens Day
· Members-Only Breakfast, 8-10 a.m.: Members receive exclusive access to the plant sale, plus a complimentary breakfast to enjoy while shopping.
· Plant Sale and Garden Art & Merchandise Fair, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.: Included with the cost of admission
· Adult Workshop: Sustainable Design Using Pollinator-Friendly Plug-and-Plant Kits, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Understand elements of sustainable garden design through the lens of horticulture and ecology. Learn how to implement practical design techniques and how to achieve success with a pollinator friendly plug-and-plant kit. This lecture requires pre-registration but is free to attend with the purchase of a pollinator friendly plug-and-plant kit, complete with plants that can landscape a 32-square-foot area. Members and Nonmembers: Kit $120; class free with purchase of kit. Kits available for purchase at Spring Garden Festival. Register at
· Drop-in Demonstrations:
o Houseplants, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
o Topiary, 1-4 p.m.

Prep Iowa

Saturday, May 12
· Plant Sale and Garden Art & Merchandise Fair, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.: Included with the cost of admission
· Adult Workshop: Mounting Staghorn Ferns, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Mount your very own staghorn fern to take home. Learn more about these unique plants, the correct mounting technique and how to properly care for your new eye-catching houseplant. All materials are included. Members $40; Nonmembers $50. Registration required at
· Family Workshop: Carnivorous Plant Terrariums, 2-3:15 p.m.: Learn about the marvelous and mysterious world of carnivorous plants and how to care for them. Decorate and plant your very own terrarium of these curiously dangerous plants. Members $20 Youth/Adult Pair, $10 Additional Youth; Nonmembers $25 Youth/Adult Pair, $15 Additional Youth. Registration required at
· Drop-in Demonstrations:
o Vermicomposting, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
o Planting Containers, 1-4 p.m.

Sunday, May 13: Mother’s Day
· FREE admission for mothers all day thanks to Principal
· Plant Sale and Garden Art & Merchandise Fair, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.: Included with the cost of admission
· Family Workshop: Flower Crowns and Scepters, 1-2:15 p.m.: Celebrate Mother’s Day by learning about a variety of flowers and then creating handmade flower crowns and wands with your little prince or princess. Members $20 Youth/Adult Pair, $10 Additional Youth; Nonmembers $25 Youth/Adult Pair, $15 Additional Youth. Registration required at
· Drop-in Demonstration: Scented Geraniums, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

“This year’s Spring Garden Festival promises to have something for everyone,” said President and CEO Stephanie Jutlia. “It offers an opportunity for tried-and-true gardeners and those with casual interest alike to enjoy the world of plants in a celebratory springtime atmosphere.”

On Sunday, May 13, Trellis Café will open at 10 a.m. for Mother’s Day brunch. Reservations are available by calling 515.323.6288.

The Botanical Garden is also holding a raffle for the chance to win $200 worth of plants and be the very first to shop the plant sale with Kelly Norris, director of horticulture and education. Tickets are $10 each or 3 for $25 (cash or check only) and may be purchased at the Garden Shop from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Sunday, May 6.

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