Sunday, April 10, 2011

Gayla Trail at Art in Bloom

The Art in Bloom exhibit at the Milwaukee Art Museum provided a opportunity to spend real life time with a few of the garden bloggers whose 140 character insights I follow. Gayla Trail (@yougrowgirl), author of the books You Grow Girl: The Groundbreaking Guide to Gardening and  Grow Great Grub: Organic Food from Small Spacesand founder of the website You Grow Girl was going to be speaking.  Meeting up were bloggers @mrbrownthumb of Chicago Garden, @snappyjdog of The Dig-it-yourself garden, @myskinnygarden of My Skinny Garden and @cobrahead of Cobrahead Tools.

As the Milwaukee host of the meet-up, I suggested we start at the Milwaukee Public Market. This is a great choice when needing something for everyone,  not to mention a pleasant walk from the museum. The next two hours passed quickly; sharing stories of our gardens and community gardens, plus hearing Gayla talk about the challenges of writing garden books (and photographing not to mention growing everything needed).
 We headed back to the museum so Gayla could prep for her talk, and we could visit the exhibit.
 I hate to admit that not only had I not been to the Art Museum before, I also did not know what the Art in Bloom exhibit was all about. As we walked into the galleries, I thought, "hmm, how odd, just floral arrangements set around the museum". Then this one, done in such a literal fashion, hit me......oh my, the floral exhibits are inspired by the paintings.
From that point on it was fascinating to see how the floral designer had interpreted the paintings. Next year, I plan on spending more time in the exhibits. They really are quite compelling.
Gayla did a great presentation on urban gardening, growing food in unlikely spots, from rooftops, to alleys, in containers and in the ground. I learned a lot, got some great ideas, looking forward to using her suggestions , ideas this summer in the driveway farm part 2. I'm enjoying reading 'Grow Great Grub", recommend it highly.
After the lecture and Gayla's book signing, the group headed back to the Third Ward for dinner at Milwaukee Ale House. This beer girl loved the plates her pot roast was served upon! Need to find these.
One of the topics at dinner was how great a city is Milwaukee. That's always nice to hear, especially from a group primarily from Chicago. We do have a great town, I can sometimes lose sight of that with my constant rush to visit someplace new and exciting. 

Finished off this garden and Milwaukee centered weekend with brunch with Hubby and kiddo at HoneyPie in Bayview before heading to the Home and Garden Show. So good. A typical Milwaukee Bloody Mary with it's side pony of High Life, great food, and for kiddo a carefully chosen dessert to go from the bakery cases.
Brunch included a small reminder that we aren't quite to spring yet in Milwaukee. A hail downpour. Unlike anything I've seen, small bits of hail, the size of Dipping Dots, quickly covering the ground. Fascinating to watch, and to walk in.

 Milwaukee did itself proud with Art in Bloom. With all my travel - for business and pleasure, it's good to be reminded every now and again of how much this great city I call home offers!


  1. I'd never spent much time there so it was interesting to me to get to experience it, made all the better by the company I was with. The Art in Bloom exhibit was fantastic! I wish we did something similar here at the Art Institute. Next year I'll have to get there earlier to get to see the whole show.

  2. Sounds like so much fun AND culture. Wish I would have been there with you guys!

  3. wow - i'm just seeing this now (don't ask) - it brings me back ... love love love Milwaukee & MAM (Milwaukee Art Museum) ... thanks for this!