Tuesday, January 22, 2008
A fair mess
I didn't update Indoor Gardener last thursday since I visited the Formex fair in Stockholm. Formex is for retailers specialising in design, home decoration, hobbies and toys - in other words this was acres upon acres of playthings for (mostly) grownups. Strange as it may seem some of the most interesting ideas in indoor gardening tend to show up on a place like this - those ideas too wild and crazy to make it into, well, 'real' design and gardening fairs. That's why I spent ten hours walking around wholesalers collecting catlogues.
Decoration pots were in an overwhelming majority, spanning from clean design to pots in shape of clowns driving cars painted in bright colours. Some wholesalers had shelving systems or hangers where it was possible to hang pots on the wall. Hortensia (thanks to Mona Grenelin at In Port Showroom who helped a stunned blogger out) is a danish company specialising in beatiful gardening tools and other gardening stuff. Their potstands in cast iron, hanging flower pots in china and in cast iron, should be nice and possible to use indoors too. Space is limited when gardening indoors, so if you have to chose between a pot and decoration, a nice looking pot may be a good idea to use. You can take a look at some of Hortensia's range at their danish homepage here. (I didn't bring my camera, since I didn't know how the exhibitors would react to photografer. Now I now that there were quite a few with cameras around, so if I attend the fair this autumn I may take some pictures.)
My favourite wholesaler was Formfocus. They are bringing the range of Secret du potager to Sweden. Potager is a french word for kitchen garden, and at least in France this garden should be beautiful as well as filled with herbs and vegetables. It's in this tradition Sophie Baudechon have created her company, which specialises in beautiful gardening tools and seed packages as well as gardening kits. My interest, of course, is turned to her kits for windows and balcony (you can see one of them in the picture above). The kit comes with everything you need, the parcel transforms into a pot with four compartments and the lid can be used as a tray for it. Four bags of soil are accompanied by for packets of seeds with manuals. You even get four little lable pins. There are seven kits available, two with herbs, one with tomatoes, one with sallad, one for kids, a kitchen garden for the balcony and one kit with edible flowers. I'm particularly interested in the last one.
Hortensia as well as Formfocus are strickt wholesalers, ie. they don't sell to individuals. If you are interested in their wares I do recommend emailing either Hortensia or Secret du potager to find out where you can find a retailer in your area. If possible perhaps you should talk to your local nursery and see if they can order what you are interested in.
I found one wholesaler that sells to individuals too - in EU (and to be fair; mostly in Sweden). Lilla Fiskaregatans Trädgårdsbutik do have a shop in Lund as well as a webshop where you find beautiful gardening tools (Formex former name was Presentmässan ie. "the Gift Fair"), as well as a set of minitools that would work well with gardening in pots. They have a big variety of mini greenhouses for seedlings, both with and without heating. My alltime favourites are the ones looking like victorian greenhouses in miniature. They do sell plastic plant bells (think victorian glas domes put over individual plants in the garden to protect and provide some extra warmth - the english word for them slips my mind at the moment) and at least two of the smaller ones fits over a standard size terracotta pot, something which can double as decoration for your window while propagating.
That was all from the fair. The only thing left to say is "Deary mE, what a lot of fripperies!"