Every year our Spring Garden Festival has a theme. Our 2017 theme is Florida Friendly Landscaping. Florida Friendly Landscaping means using the right plant in the right place, using low maintenance plants in an environmentally sustainable way. This can be utilized, by example, using xeric plants or drip irrigation.
March 24 (9am - 5pm) & 25 (9am - 5pm), 2018
This is Gainesville's premier horticultural event. The Spring Garden Festival features about 150 booths offering plants, landscape displays, garden accessories, arts and crafts, educational exhibits and, of course, foods. Also featured are a children's activities area, live entertainment and live auctions. Parking is free and two off-site parking areas are serviced by shuttle buses. Please no pets at this event.
Sponsors of the show include: Visit Gainesville, Citizens State Bank, Gainesville Sun, Dominos Pizza and Alachua County Office of Waste Alternatives.
SPRING GARDEN FESTIVAL 2017 MAP
To view a list of vendors by booth number click here
BECOMING A VENDOR
We are no longer taking 2017 vendor applications, the application deadline has passed. Please keep us in mind for next year!
CONTACT US WITH QUESTIONS
Admission is $8 for Adults and $5 for children three to thirteen. Cash only (no credit cards) at these events for admission. A $2 discount is given for members of Kanapaha. Pets are not allowed at these festivals.
WHAT TO EXPECT
The Spring Garden Festival is an annual celebration held at the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens located in southwest Gainesville, Florida. The Festival has about 150 booths including many where patrons can select from a variety of plants to add color, shade and beauty to their yards and gardens. Patrons can also purchase garden related products including tools, furniture and outdoor decorations. In addition there are booths staffed by local gardening and environmental organizations where patrons can gather information about plants, ponds, pests, the environment at large, and a variety of other topics. There are also a number booths presented by artisans who create a wide range of fine arts and crafts for your home or garden. No festival would be complete without a large variety of foods available along with picnic areas where they can be enjoyed. The Festival has a stage featuring live local entertainers. Young visitors will enjoy our free Children’s Activities Area where they can pot plants, create floral arrangements, design newspaper hats and be involved in a wide variety of supervised activities. On Saturday afternoon patrons have an opportunity to compete for bargains by bidding on plants and garden items donated by area nurseries at the Live Auction.
The Spring Garden Festival is filled with activities and opportunities to gather information, and purchase plants or other garden related products. There is plenty of food, and entertainment, and seating areas so everyone can enjoy their stay at the festival. Comfortable shoes, broad brimmed hats and sunscreen can make the hours of meandering through the festival more enjoyable. The festival is located in grassy areas and under trees so we recommend strollers, walkers or wheelchairs with inflated tires. For those of you who expect to purchase large plants, numerous small plants or many other items, we recommend that you bring a wagon or small pull cart. Should you find yourself in need of assistance carrying your purchases we offer a Tote-N-Carry service staffed by Interlachen High School ROTC students and supervised by an adult sponsor. The students can help gather your purchases and transport them to a holding area located at the entrance of the Festival, where you will be able to drive in and pick them up. Any tips the students receive for providing this service go towards their school activities. For this reason we encourage you to please tip them generously.
The Kanapaha Botanical Gardens entrance (Map Marker A) is on SW Archer Road (State Road 24) 1 mile west of Interstate 75 (exit #384).
|Map Key:||(A) Kanapaha Gardens Entrance; (B) Limited Onsite Parking;
(C) Remote Parking: East of Veteran's Park; (D) Remote Parking: Kanapaha Middle School
FREE Shuttle Busses every 15 minutes between remote parking and the festival!!
There is some free parking on the grounds of the gardens (Map Marker B) but it fills up quickly. It is recommended that patrons use one of the remote parking lots and board the free shuttle buses to get to and from the gardens.
The free shuttle buses run every 15 minutes Saturday from 8:30 am until 5:30 pm and Sunday from 9:30 am until 5:30 pm. We will be providing handicapped buses this year in addition to the regular buses.
Remote Parking is available at:
East of Veteran’s Park
7400 SW 41st Place (Map Marker C)
(East on to SW 41st Place off of Tower Road between Newberry and Archer Roads)
Kanapaha Middle School
5005 SW 75th Street (Map Marker D)
(East side of Tower Rd just north of Archer Road)
Some residents along SW 63rd Terrace offer paid parking slots. This service is not affiliated with the Spring Garden Festival. The free "remote parking" shuttle only makes stops at the remote parking lots and the festival entrance.
MUST SEES AND DO'S
The children's area is free with regular admission price. The children's area will include photo opportunities, bean bag toss and crafts, such as making paper hats. Children have the opportunity to plant and take home with them a flowering plant compliments of Hatchett Creek Nursery and the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens. We are excited to have face painting this year!
The main stage is located under a large live oak tree near the entrance to the Festival. Performances are scheduled for an hour on Saturday starting at 11am. At 1:00 pm Saturday the Live Auction takes over the stage and lasts for the remainder of the afternoon. On Sunday performances run from 11am-5pm. Entertainment is provided by a diverse group of performers from folk dancers to drum ensembles. Tables and seating are provided under the tree so patrons can enjoy food from the adjacent vendors while they enjoy the entertainers on stage.
11AM: Santa Fe Brass
1PM: Live auction
11AM: Shade Tree
12PM: Emmett Carlisle
1 PM: Lost safari Drummers
2PM: Keith Peters, Jon Alexander, Richard Bassil, Walter Jones
Members of The Frontrunners Chapter of the Florida Nursery, Grower and Landscape Association, donate a wide variety of plants and garden supplies to be auctioned off Saturday afternoon at the live auction. This provides an opportunity to make major additions to your garden at very reasonable costs. Proceeds from this auction benefit the Frontrummers Chapter of the FNGLA and are used to fund research and scholarships for students in area horticulture programs. The Auction is from 1 pm until 5 pm on Saturday.
Displays for the festival will be held in Kanapaha’s entrance building in the reception hall.
2017 Summerhouse Display
This year there will be educational groups, such as the Alachua County Master Gardeners, Gainesville Garden Club and Turf SWAP providing information on this year's theme, Florida Friendly Gardening in the Reception Hall
There is also be seminars taking place in the Conference Room discussing different topics related to Florida Friendly Landscaping.
10 am - Kelly Perez, Florida-Friendly Landscaping Program's Homeowner Coordinator, "Right Plant, Right Place"
11 am - Gary Dockter, Master Beekeeper, "Florida Pollinators"
12 pm - Sharon Dockter, Master Gardener, "Hints for Starting Seeds"
11 am - Linda Burleson, Master Gardener, "Butterfly Gardening"
12 pm - Susan Nugent, Climate Reality Leader and Master Gardener, "Climate Change = Garden Change"
1 pm - Lacy Holtzworth, City of Gainesville Horticulturist, Landscape Architect and Certified Arborist, "City's Tree Sponsorship Program and introduction to beneficial and resilient street trees"
2 pm - Denise DeBusk, UF/IFAS Extension Alachua County Environmental and Community Horticulture Agent, "Why Landscapes Fail: Too Little, Too Much, Too Late!"
There are about 150 booths filled each year with a wide variety of garden related materials.
Each year over 40 booths are filled by local and regional nurseries and growers who bring a wide variety of plants to show and sell at the festival. Plants are available in a multitude of sizes and varieties including fruit trees, landscape trees, large potted plants, herbs, vegetables, and houseplants. Plants are available that will thrive in many conditions from sun to shade, in wet areas, dry areas, or even ponds and water features. Plants that are native to this area are featured alongside tropical or exotic selections. Local plant societies provide information and sell roses, bromeliads and other specialized plants as fundraisers for their organization.
Garden Supplies & Services
Over 25 booths feature products to help in your gardening activities or to make your garden more beautiful. Vendors sell gardening tools, pots, birdhouses, wind chimes and yard art to fill that special spot in your garden. A number of booths have representatives available to discuss garden services from tree trimming to irrigation systems.
Several spaces are reserved for local landscape designers to showcase their creative garden design skills. In addition to adding beauty to the Festival, the staff in these booths can help you realize your yard and garden's potential and even provide the services and materials to make it happen.
Arts and Crafts
Over 50 booths contain a wide variety of nature inspired handmade products that can be used to beautify you home, garden or person. Stained glass, turned bowls, tee shirts, incense, soaps, and weathervanes are among the many items available from the Arts and Crafts booths.
Several booths present original art inspired by nature. These items include paintings, photographs, quilts and blown glass.
Information booths are set aside for local plant societies and environmental organizations to present their specialties and answer questions from visitors. The Camellia and Orchids Societies exhibit plants grown by their members and answer questions from visitors. Other clubs represented include those interested in koi, goldfish and water gardens, and pet rescue groups. There are booths staffed by members of environmental organizations with specialized information that can help answer almost any environmental question that might be raised.