Annual Show and Sale

The Delaware African Violet and Gesneriad Society will present its free houseplant show and sale in the Auditorium at Boscov’s Christiana Town Center store off Route 273 in Christiana, Delaware (click here for directions) on Saturday, March 23, 2013 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. and the public is invited to attend.  Organized in 1963, the Society is Delaware’s oldest statewide houseplant enthusiast group, and has been staging its annual shows and sales since 1966.  We are celebrating our 50th Anniversary as an affiliate of the African Violet Society of America!


The 2011 Show


Many of the easiest and most beautiful plants for the home or greenhouse belong to the Gesneriad family, which includes the popular African Violet. Most are from tropical and subtropical regions and are often found growing in humus-filled depressions or rock crevices, on humus-covered forest floors or epiphytically on tree branches. There is a wide variety of plant sizes, shapes, flowers and colors. This is a plant family of great diversity, and they frequently grow under the same conditions of the typical home.


Some of these houseplants have been hybridized extensively, resulting in hundreds of varieties that can be quite different from those growing in their native habitats. In addition to the African Violet, some of the more common gesneriads grown by hobbyists are the Florist Gloxinia (Sinningia speciosa), Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus), Goldfish Plant (Nematanthus), Cape Primrose (Streptocarpus), Flame Violet (Episcia), and Cupid's Bower (Achimenes).   Gesneriads provide you with blooming plants of one variety or another throughout the year, an especially welcome sight on a cold winter day.


The theme of this year’s show is “Golden Jubilee – The Delaware African Violet and Gesneriad Society Celebrates 50 Years”” and will feature exotic prize winning houseplants from Tropical Africa and the Rain Forests of the Amazon.  The show also features floral design classes interpreting the main theme for the show.  The show also has design classes for arrangements of growing plants, terrariums and dish gardens.  The Society also will be creating an educational exhibit on growing houseplants under lights and will have knowledgeable members on hand to answer questions about houses plants and how to grown them.  


A very special class will have plants grown by children from the Richardson Park Learning Center in Wilmington, which educates children in an environment where developmental abilities and skills are recognized and valued.


One of the most popular aspects of the Show is the annual plant sale offering a wide range of affordable exotic house plants from miniatures to specimens in hanging baskets, most of which are rare and difficult to find locally.  There also is an astounding assortment of African Violets, the most universally popular flowering houseplant. While many plants are member grown, there also is a nice selection from commercial growers, including greenhouses which specialize in African Violets and other Gesneriads.   The Show and sale are presented the weekend before Easter, and many of these are wonderful for holiday gifts, outlasting the typical tulips and other spring bulbs. The sale also offers choice and unusual plants for outdoor container plantings.