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Get Growing: Color themes mark Smith’s flower extravaganza

The Smith College Bulb Show is quite spectacular this year with color-themed displays.

“Reflections” has frog-decorated water features and reflecting balls. The first conservatory room is dominated by purple tulips, both plain and edged ones as well as parrots and Rembrandts. Alongside are purple alliums, fritillarias and gorgeous hyacinths. At the other end of the bench are orange flowers, freesias, tulips, daffodils and other bulbs. In the next room blues and whites are prominent. There are two forms of blue hyacinths, a deep blue and a Wedgewood blue. The freesias are wonderful. And a pair of white azaleas at the entrance to the room are a pristine joy.

A friend and I especially liked the miniature daffodils such as ‘Minnow’ and ‘Segovia’ among the beautiful display of spring flowers.

Don’t miss the art exhibition, “From Petals to Paper: Poetic Inspiration from Flowers” in the adjacent Church Exhibition Gallery. Two students selected poems by such diverse writers as Wordsworth, Herrick and Sylvia Plath, as well as Louise Gluck, about tulips, daffodils and other spring flowers. Large photographs of flowers and huge swaths of flower-themed materials add to the exhibition. There is a video of Sylvia Plath with her voice reciting a poem about tulips.

The show is open daily through March 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with evening hours from 4 to 8 p.m. tonight and next Friday.

I’ll have a report on the Mount Holyoke Bulb Show next week. The “Primavera” exhibition at Talcott Greenhouse is also open daily through March 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

BEWARE THE IDES OF MARCH: Caesar ignored this warning but the Ides can be lucky for you if you attend a cooking workshop tomorrow at 10 a.m. at Annie’s Garden & Gift Center, Route 116 in North Amherst. Mary Ellen Warchol and Denise Lemay of Stockbridge Herbs will demonstrate Caesar-inspired foods. The event will include cooking demonstrations, tastings and recipes.

ORGANIC VEGGIES: Gaby Immerman of Smith College will discuss “Organic Vegetable Growing” tomorrow at 1 p.m. at the Hadley Garden Center, Route 9, Hadley. This is the final winter garden clinic of 2013 at the garden center.

EFFICIENT HOME: A “green” house will be the focus of a tour in Amherst on March 16 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. as part of the Hitchcock Center for the Environment’s winter series. The house, renovated by Coldham & Hartman Architects of Amherst, is owned by Sara Ross. Learn how she worked with the architects on a Deep Energy Retrofit to create a Zero Energy Home. Reservations are required for this free event. Space is limited. Call 256-6006 to reserve a place.

BLUEBERRIES: Learn all about growing blueberries — what varieties to choose for our area and how to plant, fertilize and prune these delicious fruits. Sonia Schloemann of UMass Extension offers this hands-on workshop in the 2013 Mass Aggie Seminars at Tougas Family Farm in Northboro on March 16 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The fee is $50. For a registration form go to the website:www.UMassGarden.com

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