The second I walked past the Cooking Stage by the media entrance for Day 1 of the Southern Spring Home & Garden Show, I heard someone say, “Oh my gosh I’ve never been to this place, I don’t know where to begin.”
Neither did I. But I went back to the main entrance and stood and stared at the faux fires (above) for a sec. It was relaxing. Then I moved on and started to explore this mecca for garden designs, designer rooms and exhibits showcasing the offerings of landscaping, remodeling and decorating companies.
I went through eight stages of sensory overload.
Stage 1: Holy shizz, there are so many things that don’t make sense indoors.
Shiny cars. Massive swing sets. A truck. Tulips and dirt.
Stage 2: Must. Touch. Everything.
There’s so much to investigate. Can I stand on that green turf? Can I jump on that empty bed? Can I push the button on that motorized screen? Can I pick up that Wells Fargo egg?
Stage 3: So many descriptions!!
People tending gardens are everywhere and people tending booths are everywhere and they all want to answer your questions even if you don’t have any. Brochures and labels are everywhere, with complex phrasing that makes you think. Like wood described as “Distressed Walnut.”
Tell me more.
Stage 4: I need absolutely everything for my apartment.
I need this multi-colored jacuzzi. I need this teak hammock. I need this surround-sound system. I need that fluffy blanket over there that looks like a polar bear.
Stage 5: WTF?
Stage 6: Oh look, snacks.
A lot of the booths have bribery items. Tootsie pops. Hershey’s Kisses. Smoothie samples. There are food stands, too. Highly effective.
Stage 7: I have located the alcohol.
Free samples of wine from PRP Wine International can be found in the garden area, while BREWPUBLIK beer samples are located in the marketplace.
Stage 8: Wait. There’s a marketplace too?
Yes. Now that the curious corner of your being has exploded you can throw some cash down — on jewelry, on plants, on lamps, on indoor decor, on outdoor furnishings. Or on a $2,295 giant zen statue.
You try. The show continues March 4-6. Just, first, take a deep breath.
Photos: Katie Toussaint