|Chicago Flower & Garden Show
Navy Pier, March 20 to 24
|Macy’s Flower Show
111 N. State St., March 24 to April 7
|Round 1: Longevity|
|The event was born in 1847, when the Chicago Horticultural Society hosted its first Exhibition of Fruits and Flowers.||A little over 20 years old, this New York City transplant is still likely to get carded.|
|Round 2: Size|
|170,000 square feet||3,000 square feet|
|Round 3: Price|
|A one-day pass will set you back $20 ($5 for kids).||Free — besides whatever stuff you end up buying at Macy’s.|
|Round 4: Chance of Getting Lost in a Fantasy|
|Medium. Lush, literature-inspired gardens whisk you away, but landscaping companies hawking patio renovations bring you back. (Plus, “Flowertales” is a rerun of last year’s theme.)||High. Macy’s goes galactic this year with a journey to a fictional floral planet, Paradisios, where you might spy a friendly extraterrestrial.|
|Round 5: How NSFW Is It?|
|Local chefs of Nude Dude Food will be shirtless beneath their aprons.||Hard to picture last year’s celeb chef, Rick Bayless, baring it all. That hot oil spatters.|
|Round 6: Instagram Influencer Inspo|
|Brush up on your smartphone photography with a free (with admission) March 20 master class on taking and sharing flower pics.||Last year’s yoga and dance classes among the blooms and racks offered a twist on the typical “I’m so fit” humblebrag post.|
|Round 7: Likelihood of Entering Plant Parenthood|
|Decent. For an extra $20, attendees can go to “potting parties” and create their own container gardens filled with colorful blooms and dreams of winter’s hasty demise.||Zilch. The plants are for ogling in store only — though Macy’s will be happy to hook you up with a Daisy by Marc Jacobs fragrance set to take home.|
The winner: Chicago Flower & Garden Show
Sure, you have to pay, but the spread of plants and activities will satisfy even the most die-hard HGTV fan.
1 thought on “Battle of the Blooms: Which Annual Flower Show Should You Visit?”
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