Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Princess and the Bulb

Just before Thanksgiving, I had the honor of documenting a celebrity gardening event at the NYBG. Their Seasonal Walk, a long border just outside the conservatory, has been thickly planted with a sophisticated mixture of flowering bulbs and perennials following a plan generated by two of the world's top garden designers, Piet Oudolf and Jaqueline van der Kloet (above), both of the Netherlands.
Borders within the bed were marked off by colored ribbon and thousands of bulbs were expertly distributed amongst the already planted perennials by Jaqueline and Frans Roozen, Technical Director of the International Flower Bulb Center. Despite the freezing temperatures, the garden crew followed behind and dug the rich mix of major and minor bulbs into the hard crusty soil.Tovah Martin, the demigoddess of horticultural writers, was also in attendance proving that frozen fingers and lips are still capable of asking good questions and taking notes.

The real media event followed the next morning when Princess Margriet of the Netherlands arrived with her husband Pieter van Voallenhoven and Todd Forest of the NYBG. Kneeling on clean burlap and using a trowel engraved with the royal crest, the Princess cheerfully popped a few tulips into the ground. This picture was quickly emailed to de Telegraaf in Holland to make page three that evening.

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