The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society will host the 2022 Philadelphia Flower Show in South Philadelphia’s Franklin Delano Roosevelt Park from Saturday, June 11 to Sunday, June 19, with the theme of “In Full Bloom.”
This year’s show will feature two floral designers from Bucks County: Mark Cook of Doylestown and Renee Tucci of Chalfont. Tucci will be participating in her 14th show and will produce an exhibit for the third time. Her past work includes a special exhibit on Princess Grace of Monaco and a “honey hive” for the theme of habitat.
Tucci is a self-described “flower nerd” who began her career in high school by covering the floral department at a local grocery store. She now works as a freelance floral designer and teacher at Bucks County Community College and is a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communications International.
She views her ability as an educator to be her greatest strength in the floral design field. “I really enjoy teaching the fundamentals of floral design to folks who are looking to get into the industry or just exploring it as a hobby for stress relief from their everyday life,” she said.
Tucci commented on the importance the show has within the floral design industry and on her design for this year’s show.
“Philadelphia is world renowned, and definitely has a very high bar of quality that they expect from their exhibitors. On a normal year, we’ll see a quarter of a million people walk through the show, so it was definitely a prestigious experience to be invited to exhibit there,” she said. “This year we’re producing an exhibit titled ‘Heartwood’ and it’s about how trees sustain us in our world in so many different ways and create community connections.”
The flower show began in 1829 and has historically taken place indoors; the Pennsylvania University Civic Center and Pennsylvania Convention Center have recently served as venues. This year marks the second time in a row that the Philadelphia Flower Show will take place outside.
When asked about the significance of the “In Full Bloom” theme and hosting the event outside, Sam Lemheney, chief of shows and events at the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, responded, “I love being outside, it’s a great situation. We had that theme on the books for a long time and felt like the outdoor show was a perfect theme for that habitat. In full bloom to a gardener means that a plant or garden is in great health.”
This year’s show will feature new amenities, including the Food Bazaar, Lakes Restaurant and Kids Cocoon. The layout has also been changed so that visitors will see the gardens and exhibits more immediately before having the opportunity to engage with the food, shopping, workshops and other entertainment. The show will also feature the most female designers ever creating large-scale exhibits.
Lemheney explained the importance of this milestone. “We really feel like we’ve come to a great place in terms of inviting diverse designers. It’s really about showcasing the fact that when people see designers that look like them, that potentially gets them interested more in horticulture and gardening,” he said.
Tickets for the show and special events are available to purchase at phsonline.org/the-flower-show.