Grow Op 2013 at the Gladstone Hotel

ERA Architects’ provocative Hoarding Suggestions outside at the Gladstone

Friday’s opening night bash at the Gladstone was jam packed. Grow Op, Exploring Landscape and Place, is a different kind of garden show.

Small-scale, creative and thought provoking, Grow Op installations range from quirky to quite beautiful, curated by landscape architect, Victoria Taylor. You might recall Victoria’s award-winning Concrete Bloom Burst (created with Ecoman Jonas Spring) at Canada Blooms 2012.

Today, April 28, 2013 until 5 pm, is your last chance to see and experience Grow Op. Despite the siren call of this most-welcome, springlike weather, you should go. Ten bucks gets you in the door, and you’ll emerge with a brainpan full of stimulation.

Ryan Taylor’s Babylon Light greets you on the 2nd floor. Yes, you can try this at home. Visit his website to purchase.


Out on the balcony, Decomposition/Composition by the three-man team, Detritus & Co., explores the cycle of (plant) life. How fitting, that Norway maple seedling is. Talk about indomitable nature!
Two of the Detritus team, Barry Parker (left) and Jonas Spring. I caught up with David Leeman shortly after.
A small detail from Karen Abel’s GeoGarden. I don’t want to spoil your pleasure and surprise in experiencing the whole thing. These explore the concept of growth – they’re home-grown alum crystals. A must-see, and today (Sunday) at 3 pm you can partake of the other portion of this particular exhibit, {a subterranean symphony in C} by violinist and – and I love this bit – sonic landscapist, Rose Bolton. Seating is limited. Be sure you’re there.

These are only a handful of the 25 installations. Many of them have an interactive element. Be sure to enter Andrea Nesbitt’s Soft Talk batcave, for example, and pay attention to what happens – before you enter Outside Studio’s camera obscura. If the sun is out, the latter will be exceptionally colourful.

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