57th Annual GWA Symposium
Vancouver, Canada
September 9-12, 2005


Friday 9th
The weather was great, the flight short and before I knew it, I was in Vancouver and on my way to the Hyatt Hotel to check in for the next four nights. Not that I would see much of my room because these symposiums are known for putting as much in as possible...and we loved that even though we complain about not having enough time! Going to the symposium for me is such a treat. I get to see old friends again and make some new ones along the way plus having it in Canada is a real plus for us as this time we can actually take plants home with us.

I was in time for our Regional Meeting (the GWA is broken up into 7 regions with six of them being in the US and our Region 7 is Canada and International). After our meeting we had a bit of free time until the garden products exhibition opened. We all look forward to that as we get to see new products and plant material, then it was back to the room to get changed for dinner At the Kettle of Fish...it was fantastic! Thanks to Susan from GardenMediaGroup and hosts.

Saturday 10th
Up for breakfast at 6:45 a.m. and the welcome session, then after that our Keynote presentation by Peter Legge, CEO of Canada Wide Magazine and Communications Ltd. His talk on Inspiring A New Generation of Gardeners was very well received by all with a steady line up afterwards to get one of his books. Concurrent sessions followed until noon when it was time to board our bus for the VanDusen Botanical Garden, UBC Botanical Garden and Thomas Hobbs private garden. I cannot begin to tell you how beautiful everything looked where ever we visited. Not just the primping for our visit, but the general state of the area - rich and green and the colours of the plantings around us were so beautiful. Vancouver is glorious at this time of year and if you haven't taken the time to visit, you should!

This time at VanDusen, I took the opportunity to go and wander around the large pond they have, never having been that way before. There is always something new to discover at VanDusen. At the UBC gardens there is an area with trial veggies in raised beds, always interesting to see what is growing and what they do. We ended our day with a visit to Thomas Hobbs private garden, which I had never seen before. I had seen the garden centre on a previous GWA regional meeting but this was certainly worth the wait. The plantings are set around a Spanish style terracotta house and as you can see by the pictures, they were incredible plantings. The colour of the house played up the shades in the succulents exquisitely. Of course the house came with a multi million dollar view!

Back to the hotel for more of the exhibits, a reception then a group of us got together to go out and have a fun evening dinner.






  • New Eden
  • Kids Garden
  • Plant a Row Grow a Row