See you in the Twin Cities? by Elizabeth Licata

Mary Schier

Mary Schier

By now, many of you must have heard about the yearly garden blogger get-togethers that have been running since 2008. Pam Penick of Digging got it started; the first one took place in Austin, which is home to great gardens and-at that time, anyway-quite a cohort of garden bloggers. Then, we moved on to Chicago, Buffalo, Seattle, Ashville, San Francisco, Portland, and Toronto. With Chicago the only real Midwestern location, it is great news that this year’s meet-up-or Fling-as it is officially called-is in the beautiful cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul. It is hosted by several very cool local bloggers there, including Amy Andrychowicz, Kathleen Hennessy, Mary Schier, and others.

Despite the bleak clichés propagated by the film Fargo, and (sometimes) the Lake Woebegone stories, this is a beautiful region, with gorgeous summers, and the Fling happens July 14–17, which is peak season. I’ve seen some incredible imagery on the official Gardenbloggers Fling blog, some of which I am sharing here.

Mary Schier

Mary Schier

If you don’t know what these get-togethers are like, just think all the fun of a conference-seeing people who share your interests, making exciting new friends, and getting to see amazing sights-without any of the not-so-fun stuff (boring panel discussions, bad hotel seminar room lighting/hideous carpeting, and needing to act “professional”). The Flings are full days spent touring exciting gardens, lunch included, with cool cocktail events and dinners thrown in. You can take half a day off if you want to enjoy nongarden sight-seeing-such as the Walker Art Center, which is near the hotel; Minnehaha Falls Park; the Mill City Museum, and plenty of spectacular architecture.

Mary Schier

Mary Schier

The best thing about the Flings is that they have always emphasized private gardens, not just the ones you can pay to see any old time. These can range from intimate spaces within your capabilities and price range to flat-out extravaganzas.

The images here show (top to bottom) the Minnesota Lanscape Arboretum, the (private) Marge Hols garden, and the Noerenberg Memorial Gardens, on the shore of Lake Minnetonka.


If you blog and this sounds good to you, here’s where you can register.

See you in the Twin Cities? originally appeared on Garden Rant on April 19, 2016.


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