The Destin and Island Garden Clubs are sponsoring a bus trip to Mobile on March 20 to spend the day at the Festival of Flowers. If you love flowers or gardens, this event will cause the stoutest of hearts to race a bit faster because it will be one of the most glorious days of your gardening year. This event is acknowledged as the premier flower and garden event of the greater Gulf Coast, and the Southeastern Tourism Society rates it as one of the top 20 events to attend.

Every year brings a different theme. This year’s is “British Gardens in Time.”  You will experience 300,000 square feet of exhibits. Lining the entrance are beautiful Southern belles in old-fashioned dresses with hoop skirts — each one more beautiful than Scarlet O’Hara in her most magnificent drapery. 

One of the favorite venues is World of Flowers, which displays flowers from England and around the world. The Landscaped Gardens are my favorite. They remind me of a miniature Chelsea Flower show with landscaped gardens filled with new ideas and often new plants out on the markets.  The gardenscapes will show British landscapes and architectural features.  As you enter under the big tent, the season’s showstopper is always the lavish display put on by Bellingrath Gardens and Home.  Sounds like this year will be no different as an exciting garden and water feature will be in the center ring to thrill our hearts and minds.

Tablescapes will make you want to come home and throw a party to try out all the new ideas you see.  Lunchtime you will find a food court located on the grounds with tables, chairs and good food.  If you can find extra time, look in on the many seminars provided by local professionals concerning plants and plant care.

The several acres in the Gardeners Galleria are also not to be missed. This outdoor area contains 40 vendors selling some of the most interesting garden accessories and the most beautiful plants this side of heaven. You can buy until you drop or your money gives out. The bus saves several rows in the back to hold plants that you purchase. For smaller plants, storage under the bus holds more than husbands left at home want to know.  

The bus trip, $45 a person, will depart from The Boardwalk on Okaloosa Island at eight o’clock sharp on Thursday, March 20, with the anticipated return being four o’clock. The payment includes the bus ride, entry fee for the flower show and a tip for the driver.  Reservations are being taken by Kathy Foster at 244-4490 or

You do not want to miss this fanciful, fabulous and fantastic show.  Reservations are going fast so don’t delay unless you want the bus to leave without you.

Laura Hall is a Destin resident.  She explores area gardens and other local topics sometimes with her cavalier spaniel Annie in tow.  If you have a good topic, contact Laura at