Grand Garden Show Highlights featuring Proven Winners
In 2017 Grand Hotel hosted its 5th Annual Grand Garden Show. This year’s show will be held August 26 – 28, 2018 and feature guest speaker, Amy Stewart. Amy Stewart is the New York Times bestselling author of nine books, including Girl Waits with Gun and The Drunken Botanist. Catch-up with Amy on NPR’s Morning Edition and Fresh Air. Every year guests have the chance to enjoy private garden tours guided by Barnwell Landscape and Garden crews, live painting presentations by local artists, and a variety of educational seminars given by professional gardeners from across the country.For a full list of presenters and events visit grandhotel.com.
Take a look at some of the highlights from last year!
Private Garden Tours
During the private garden tours of Mackinac Island guests have the unique experience of touring some of Mackinac Island’s most magnificent gardens that are hidden away in the backyards and bluffs of Mackinac.
Not only do guests get an inside look of these beautiful residences’ gardens, but in previous years they have gotten the chance to enjoy the paintings of local artists such as Mary Bea Mcwatters , Kevin Barton, and Maeve Kroghan. These artist’s actually paint the gardens LIVE while you are touring them.
Petoskey local artist, Mary Bea Mcwatters, worked as a gardener for Jack Barnwell of Barnwell Landscape and Gardens from 2007-2015 before becoming a full time independent artist. Mary Bea now runs her own successful Mary Bea Art, specializing in capturing Northern Michigan’s most beautiful scenery using acrylics and mixed mediums. When asked when Mary Bea started painting she replied, “ My first paintings were finger paintings so I never really started painting, I just never stopped.” During the 2017 Grand Garden Show Mary Bea captured the beautiful garden of the Craig Mawr Cottage on East Bluff. Mary Bea’s paintings can be seen here.
Another local artist from Petoskey, Kevin Barton also returned in 2017 to participate in the Grand Garden Show. Kevin Barton, is “one of Northern Michigan’s most collected artists, and is known for his post-impressionist stylings of bold brush strokes and bright colors.” Barton is a strong voice in the artist community on Mackinac Island and was the winner of the 2017 Mackinac Island Lilac Festival poster.
You can view Barton’s latest work here.
The private garden tour painters aren’t the only stars of this Grand Garden Show. Youtube Vlogger, Laura LeBoutiller , Oregon native and host of Garden Answer has over 87,000 Channel Subscribers that follow her how-to gardening vlog. Guests were able to chat with Laura during the garden tours and also learn her insider tips during her seminar. Below is her tour of Chestnut Cottage on Mackinac Island. She will be joining the show again in 2018.
Mackinac Island’s very own gardener, Jack Barnwell, also put on a show for our guests. Jack is known to take guests through the entire process of designing one of his innovative garden landscapes from start to finish. In 2017 Jack used the balance and harmonies of The Beatle’s music as a metaphor for his design process, comparing boulders with a bass line and little perennials as harmonies. As a finale, actual rockstar, Myk Rise, Mackinac Island’s favorite singer/guitarplayer, showed up on stage and burst into song with the entire Jack Barnwell landscaping crew.
Every year the main session and the final cocktail reception in the Tea Garden are a great capstone to the event with PBS Garden Home host, P. Allen Smith. P. Allen Smith continues to delight guests with his garden humor and extensive knowledge on gardening techniques and tips.
We would like to thank all the speakers, artists and guests that participated in the 2017 Proven Winner’s Grand Garden Show and look forward to seeing you in just a few weeks at our 2018 Show! Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Grandhotel.com for highlights and information on our upcoming 2018 Grand Garden Show.