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American Flower Show Series

Dan Bussey

Saturday, February 24, 2018
1 – 4 p.m.

Alsdorf Auditorium, Regenstein Center
Free lecture; regular parking fees apply

Dan Bussey, orchard manager and apple historian at Seed Savers Exchange will present the lecture "Heirloom Apples for the Home Orchard." Mr. Bussey will take part in a question-and-answer session following the lecture.

Bussey is also the author of the comprehensive seven-volume set, The Illustrated History of Apples in the United States and Canada, edited by Kent Whealy. The volumes encompass 30 years of research and seven years of editing, and include more than 1,400 watercolor panel illustrations of apple varieties.

Midwest Fruit Explorers is a nonprofit organization of amateur backyard fruit-growing enthusiasts. New members are always welcome.

Photo: Robert Rausch for The New York Times

Dendrobium spectabile 'The Alien'

Saturday and Sunday, March 10 – 11, 2018
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Photographers' Hour: Sunday, March 11, 9 – 10 a.m.

Come join the Illinois Orchid Society at its spring show and sale. Individual orchids in 128 classes will vie for ribbons. Entries will receive "best of class" green ribbons, and the best-appointed plant in the show will receive the Chicago Horticultural Society Award from the American Orchid Society judges. Displays of orchids will be artistically arranged, and repotting services will be available.

Families can take part in orchid-based activities for children. Vendors will also be on-site to sell orchid plants and related products—cut flowers, cultural books, hobby bags of our special Illinois Orchid Society (IOS) potting mix, raffle tickets, and best of all, IOS memberships.

Click here to visit the Illinois Orchid Society's website.

Northern Illinois Gesneriad Society Show & Sale

Saturday and Sunday, March 24 – 25, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Explore the world of this beautiful indoor plant family, which includes lipstick plant, primrose, and African violets. The show features rare plants, artistic and educational entries, and a sale offering growing supplies and many unusual and difficult-to-find varieties. Learn about and enjoy the beauty of gesneriads, their diversity in flower and foliage, and their ease of culture. It's no wonder that this family includes some of the most popular houseplants.

Midwest Fruit Explorers Grafting Workshop

Sunday, March 25, 2018, 1 – 4 p.m.

The Midwest Fruit Explorers present this hands-on workshop with step-by-step instructions on how to graft and care for fruit trees. The best varieties for the Midwest will be available, including apple, pear, and plum trees. MidFEX members will be on hand to guide visitors to select the right tree for the right location. After purchasing root stock, visitors can follow the demonstration and leave with one or more trees ready to plant in the ground. No preregistration is required.

Midwest Daffodil Society Show

Saturday, April 28, 2018, noon – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 29, 2018, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Midwest Daffodil Society's show features hundreds of daffodils on display that will be judged by the society. The show includes cut blooms, floral design, and photography competitions. The show will include floral designs inspired by the gardens at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Daffodil growers of all skill levels are invited to participate.

PHOTO: Dahlia Show

Saturday and Sunday, May 5 – 6, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Central States Dahlia Society presents its annual plant and root sale. The sale features dahlias in an array of sizes, shapes, and colors. This is a great opportunity to purchase dahlias seen on display at the society's annual show in September. Society members will be available to answer questions and provide written information about dahlia planting and care.

PHOTO: Midwest Bonsai Show

Saturday and Sunday, May 12 – 13, 2018
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The Midwest Bonsai Society’s spring show features spring-blooming trees, bonsai on rocks, and suiseki (the Japanese art of stones). Visitors can also enjoy demonstrations and workshops and shop for bonsai and bonsai supplies. Registration is required for workshops.

Register for workshops here.

PHOTO: Iris Show

Saturday and Sunday, May 26 – 27, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Sponsored by the Northshore Iris & Daylily Society, the show features more than ten artistic arrangements and 75 irises in bloom. Irises and daylilies will also be available for purchase.

PHOTO: Bromeliad Show

Saturday and Sunday, May 26 – 27, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Bromeliad Society of Greater Chicago show and sale features plants such as pineapples and Spanish moss, which are generally easy to grow, require little care, and reward the grower with brilliant, long-lasting blooms and ornamental foliage. Society members will be on hand; information on growing bromeliads will be provided. Various bromeliads will be for sale. 

PHOTO: Hosta Show

Saturday and Sunday, June 2 – 3, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Northern Illinois Hosta Society presents this show, which features more than 100 cut-leaf specimens of hosta, including rare and unusual varieties. Hosta growers will have garden-ready plants for sale.

Ikebana International Show

Saturday and Sunday, June 23 – 24, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Ikebana International Society presents an exhibition of traditional Japanese flower arranging. This event features many educational opportunities to learn about the mechanics and techniques of ikebana.

Wisconsin-Illinois Lily Society Show

Saturday, July 7, 2018, noon – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, July 8, 2018, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Wisconsin-Illinois Lily Society's annual show features floral arrangements in four artistic categories, and a beautiful, judged display of more than 100 lily blooms in different varieties. This show features true lilies, belonging to the genus Lilium. There are about 80 different species of lilies, and thousands of hybrids. Visitors can get tips from experts on how to grow and propagate lilies.

Daylily Show

Saturday and Sunday, July 14 – 15, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Sponsored by the Northshore Iris and Daylily Society, this show features more than ten artistic arrangements and more than 50 daylily varieties in bloom. The sale features iris and daylily plants, available for purchase on both Saturday and Sunday. The show is on Sunday only.

PHOTO: Cactus and Succulent Show

Saturday and Sunday, July 21 – 22, 2018, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The Cactus and Succulent Society of Greater Chicago presents a show and sale of cactuses and succulents, featuring plants grown by members of the society.

PHOTO: Flower Show.

Saturday, August 11, 2018, noon – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, August 12, 2018, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Gardeners of the North Shore host this annual show, which includes a judged exhibition with more than 500 entries of anything a home gardener can grow, including flowers, vegetables, herbs, and houseplants.

PHOTO: Bonsai Show

Friday, August 17, 2018, noon – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, August 18 – 19, 2018, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Presented by the Midwest Bonsai Society, this show draws visitors from across the United States and is often regarded as one of the top three shows of its kind in the country. Enjoy a display of 200 bonsai trees judged by bonsai master, Kathy Shaner. Shop more than a dozen vendors for bonsai trees and supplies. Free demonstrations and lectures will be available. Also, workshops will be held throughout the weekend for bonsai enthusiasts of all skill levels. Visit midwestbonsai.org for more information on workshops.

Ikenobo Ikebana Chicago Chapter Show

Saturday and Sunday, August 25 – 26, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arranging, originated with Ikenobo in Kyoto, Japan, as a Buddhist floral offering. This show is presented by the Ikenobo Ikebana Society, Chicago Chapter, and will feature arrangements from members who will be on hand to answer questions about Ikenobo. 

IL Mycological Association Mushroom Show

Sunday, September 2, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Illinois Mycological Association celebrates the richness of fall mushrooms in Illinois with an exhibition of 50 to 100 varieties of mushroom foraged from area forests. Members provide information and answer questions about mushrooms and fungi. Explore the children's education area and shop for mushrooms, books, and T-shirts at the show. Mycology is the study of fungi that explores how humans use them as a source for medicine and food; what dangers they may pose, such as poisoning or infection; and their benefits to natural ecosystems.

PHOTO: Ikebana Show

Saturday, September 8, 2018, noon – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, September 9, 2018, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Ikebana Sogetsu Exhibition will feature flower arranging demonstrations and 50 Ikebana on display. Sogetsu School of Illinois members will be on hand to answer questions.

American Dahlia Society National Show

Saturday, September 15, 2018, noon – 5 p.m.
Sunday, September 16, 2018, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

What is it about dahlias that has attracted so many fans and admirers? Dahlias are known for their unique features, vibrant colors, perfect petal arrangements, and overall "wow" factor.

Get ready for an explosive burst of color at the Central States Dahlia Society Show at the Chicago Botanic Garden. More than 2,000 flowers in the dahlia family will be judged and on display in a wide variety of colors, sizes, and forms, with floral designs and photography completing the show. Society members will be on hand to provide written information and to answer questions about dahlias.

Illinois Orchid Society Fall Show & Sale

Saturday and Sunday, October 13 – 14, 2018
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Special photographers' hour on Sunday at 9 a.m.

The Illinois Orchid Society presents this show, in which individual orchids in 128 classes will vie for red, white, and blue ribbons. Twenty-five entries will receive "best of class" green ribbons, and the best-appointed plant in the show will receive the Chicago Horticultural Society Award from American Orchid Society judges. Tabletop displays, from the rarest of species to cultivated hybrids, will be artistically arranged. The Society will provide an orchid sales area and repotting services. Visit www.iosoc.com for more information.

PHOTO: Midwest Fruit Explorers

Saturday and Sunday, October 20 – 21, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Freshly harvested fruit grown in the area by the Midwest Fruit Explorers is on display and for sale. Featured are apples, pears, pawpaws, grapes, kiwis, and more. See apples turned into cider during apple press demonstrations. Visitors can enjoy tastings and information on growing fruit. Apples, cider, and more will be available for sale.

Midwest Daffodil Society Bulb Sale

Saturday and Sunday, October 20 – 21, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Midwest Daffodil Society's bulb sale features many varieties of unique and easy-to-grow daffodils for the gardener who wants some early color next spring.

Lily Bulb Sale

Saturday and Sunday, October 20 – 21, 2018
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

A wide variety of lily bulbs will be available for purchase at the Wisconsin-Illinois Lily Society's annual sale.

Roadside Flower Sale Workshops

October 22 – 24, 2018
Monday, 1 – 3 p.m.
Tuesday and Wednesday, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. and 1 – 3 p.m.

Burnstein Hall

At these workshops, Chicago Botanic Garden volunteers and other participants transform dried flowers, grasses, and pods into beautiful arrangements for purchase at the Roadside Flower Sale. The public is invited to participate in the workshops and learn more about flower arranging. All arrangements made during the workshops will be donated to the sale and proceeds will benefit the Garden. Please register for workshops in advance by calling (847) 835-8392.

Roadside Flower Sale

Friday – Sunday, October 26 – 28, 2018
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Hold on to summer and shop one-of-a-kind natural plant and dried flower arrangements at the Chicago Botanic Garden's annual Roadside Flower Sale. Visit the sale in the Regenstein Center to view gifts incorporating dried flowers, pods, and grasses from the Garden. More than 300 flower arrangements and wreaths created by talented volunteers are available for purchase. The sale features arrangements, wreaths, bouquets, wall hangings, stationery cards, and more.
 
Volunteers design the floral arrangements using plant materials they collected at the Garden throughout the year. Professional floral designers lead the creation of each item at special workshops, allowing volunteers to showcase their unique talents and perspectives. Volunteers first hosted this event in 1980.