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Originally published Thursday, February 19, 2009 at 12:00 AM

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Weekend highlight

Focus is on small at Northwest Flower and Garden Show

Seattle's Northwest Flower & Garden Show focuses on sustainability and small spaces this year.

Seattle Times staff

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Spring is in colorful bloom at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center through Sunday. Sustainable gardening is the theme, focusing on native plants, organic vegetable gardens, creative recycling and composting.

"There's a focus on container gardening for condos and small spaces at this year's show," says spokesman Dan Branley. "And with the popularity of 'staycations,' there's lots of inspiration to make your garden a relaxing getaway at home."

The displays and seminars, along with vendors of plants and garden gadgets of all sorts, are calculated to delight gardening enthusiasts, but a green thumb isn't needed to enjoy the show. The 26 full-scale, creative display gardens offer a world of instant spring and summer for anyone looking for a break from winter's chill. Besides the container-garden displays and seminars, including organic vegetable gardening (designed for anyone, no matter how small your yard or deck), there's a large selection of orchids and other indoor plants and a variety of garden-inspired art to adorn your indoor and outdoor living spaces.

Three venues offer continuous seminars, including local gardening celebrities Dan Hinkley, Valerie Easton, Ed Hume, Marty Wingate, Marianne Binetti and Ciscoe Morris. "Sproutopia: A Place For Kids" has kids' gardening activities, and free child care is available.

After 21 years, the Flower and Garden Show organizers are bowing out, and unless a buyer is found, this might be the last year for the show.

The details

Time: 9 a.m.-8 p.m. today, Friday, Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Free child care for up to two hours for toilet-trained children older than 2, 9 a.m.-7 p.m. today-Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday.

Cost: $20/day or $29/two days, $13/half-day after 3 p.m. today-Saturday, after 2 p.m. Sunday; $9/students ages 25 and younger with ID, $4/ages 6-17, ages 5 and younger free.

Location: Washington State Convention & Trade Center, 800 Convention Place, Seattle.

Getting there: From Interstate 5 North and I-90 West, take Madison Street exit, go right on Madison Street, then left on Eighth Avenue. From I-5 South, take Stewart Street exit, go left on Boren Avenue, right on Seneca Street, then right on Eighth Avenue. Convention Center garage entry is from Eighth Avenue. Metro bus service, 206-553-3000 or tripplanner.metrokc.gov.

More information: 206-789-5333 or www.gardenshow.com/seattle/index.

Madeline McKenzie: 206-464-8245 or mmckenzie@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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