Welcome to our first blog, which is fittingly about our first big event!
We founded Pop-Up Gardens at the start of the year, and we’ve been focussing on getting everything set up. What better way to do this than giving ourselves a mammoth target of preparing an installation for the inaugural Hemp Health and Innovation Expo and Symposium at Rosehill Gardens…?
The event took place on the weekend of the 14th and 15th of May, giving us only a couple of months to prepare. For such a big event, a small installation wouldn’t really work, so we settled on using two of our 2m Superior Green Walls, three Rustic Pallet Walls and three Pot Plant Walls, complemented by a free-standing tropical palm display.
Sounds pretty straightforward, but at the time of securing the work, our portfolio consisted of one Rustic Pallet Wall, with approximately two months to assemble everything else. Couple this with Paul and I still having the day-to-day running of Watermark Landscapes to fill up our weeks, and we soon discovered that we had given ourselves a mountain to climb… Some long days and weekend work followed to ensure everything was ready in time. It was all hands on deck, with Sarah and Emilie also helping to plant out the modules for the Superior Green Walls. Our good friend Thomo also saved the day, helping out at short notice to assemble the stands for the Superior Walls, and constructing our three beautiful timber Mesh Walls.
Roll on the morning of Friday 13th May (yep, we chose to do our first installation on Friday the 13th…) and we were (almost) ready to go! Our first task of the day was to figure out how to fit ten stands, twenty four Green Wall modules, sixty eight hanging pots, four large palms and a whole load of other plants (not to mention all of our tools etc.) onto two Utes, two trailers, and a small van. A massive game of Tetris later, and we were all packed up and ready to get on the road to Rosehill.
We arrived at Rosehill to the normal organised-chaos of a big event bump-in. Cars, vans and trucks everywhere, and people running about crazy setting up their respective stalls and stands. As this was our first experience of an event like this, it was both thrilling and simultaneously daunting. We found a spot as quickly as possible, and focused on getting everything off the vehicles & set up. With the light fading fast, we found some spotlights to use, and proceeded to get into a really good rhythm of assembling, planting and positioning our Pop-Up Garden. Finally, around 8pm, we had everything in place, looking absolutely fantastic (if I do say so myself!), and we headed off for a well-earned feed and a beer.
It was exciting and a little bit surreal seeing our walls appear on social media throughout the weekend, with a real highlight being an interview with Costa Georgiadis in front of one of our Rustic Pallet Walls. Our installation was a big hit with organisers and attendees alike, which gave us a huge sense of satisfaction. Our hard work paid off, and everything came together really well.
Sunday and the bump-out came around very quickly, and we soon found ourselves back at Rosehill ready to pack everything away and get back to base. Having learned some lessons from Friday’s bump-in, the packing-up went quickly and without a hitch.
All in all, an exhausting but thoroughly rewarding weekend of work! It was an honour to be involved with styling a truly special Pop-Up installation for this great event. And as our very first event, we will always remember it fondly.
Huge thanks go to our good friends Dave Hush and David Thompson for all their help, and also to Michelle Crain and her team at HHI for getting us involved and having faith in our concept. We can’t wait to do it all again next year! Now we’ll need to up our game even further and think of some new WOW concepts…
You can see us at the next Hemp Health and Innovation Expo and Symposium on 27th and 28th May 2017. Watch this space for some exciting new installations!