Friday Arts

Greening Philadelphia



May 12, 2017

Producer: Monica Rogozinski

On November 24, 1827 a group of gentleman farmers, botanists and other plant enthusiasts held a meeting to create the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society. There, it was resolved, “to establish a Horticultural Society in the City of Philadelphia for the promotion of this interesting and highly influential branch of Science.” At that time, PHS boasted 80 members. Today, the PHS family includes 21,000 member households.

Community, innovation, and a passion for plants and gardening all describe PHS, and interwoven throughout is tradition, and the tradition that looms in most minds is the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show, held each year at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

Proceeds from the Flower Show support the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s efforts to transform lives and communities through horticulture and greening projects. PHS and its thousands of volunteers and partner organizations apply horticulture to help build stronger, more equitable, more sustainable, and more beautiful communities. The model is simple: engage a diverse community of supporters and volunteers and work with them to create and sustain green projects. In turn, these projects lead to positive outcomes in social equity, environmental sustainability, public health, and urban livability.

Friday Arts visit the 2017 Flower Show, themed Holland: Flowering the World. We talk to one of its guest exhibitors from the Netherlands, garden designer Carrie Preston. She explains how the Netherlands is leading the way to a more efficient plant production system, innovative landscape design and helping create a more sustainable world.

PHS Pop Up Gardens
Two PHS Pop Up Gardens will transform the city landscape in May and through October, with delicious new food and drink menus and inspirational programs and events that connect people with plants and each other in lush urban oases.

The flagship PHS Pop Up Garden near 15th and South Streets will be operated by Cantina Los Caballitos, the South-of-the-Border mecca in South Philly and is currently open. An expanded food and beverage menu will include burrito or bowl selections, corn on the cob with lime mayo and queso fresco, jicama and watermelon salad, black bean hummus, and Mexican hot dogs, as well as margaritas with botanical flavors, mint juleps, mojitos, and frozen daiquiris. The taps will flow with great craft beers and an extensive can menu. Special events are planned weekly, including live music on Brewsday Tuesdays and a Guest Chef Series every other Thursday featuring dishes from Di Bruno Brothers, Federal Donuts, Royal Tavern and others.

PHS Pop Up Garden at uCity Square – Opens third week of May
PHS will transform a vacant lot at 36th and Filbert Streets in University City into an open-air, European-style garden for the season. The new site is located in the dynamic uCity Square community surrounded by top-tier universities, research and medical centers, growing start-ups and established companies, and historic neighborhoods.
Jet Wine Bar will operate the garden and offer delicious dishes created by Rex 1516 and Café Ynez. The Tex Mex cuisine will include BBQ sandwiches, tacos, tortilla salad, nachos, tater tots, pimento cheese and crackers, and chips and salsa. Special events will include Mardi Gras Mondays, Taco Tuesdays, Wine Wednesdays, and Thursday Yappy Hours for canines and their companions. The drink menu will include a selection of wines and draft beers, frozen margarita, hurricanes, and sangria. Constellation Brands will feature top labels Corona, Modelo Especial and Pacifico, beers imported from Mexico.