Gardening Segments for Television Take a Village to Produce!

Gardening Segments for Television Take a Village to Produce!

by / 4 Comments / 199 View / March 10, 2008


Garden designer Shirley Bovshow preparing her display for the CBS Early Show

When you’re a professional garden designer and appear on television as a garden expert, you have to be ready to create beautiful gardens at a moments notice and in any season, weather its prime gardening time or not!  So when I got the call to do the CBS Early Show last week, I jumped at the challenge!

  My mission was to create “themed container gardens” using decor and colorful finishing touches to stand in the gap when plants have little color to offer. The task was a lot more challenging than I had imagined! Doing the show itself was a piece of cake and lots of fun and the four-and-a-half minutes went by in a flash. The television hosts and their production team were fantastic to work with and very helpful.  The problem was, “where was I going to find camera-ready plants in the middle of NYC in the wintertime in just a few hours?”  I was the plant expert  after all, but I needed help!

 To protect myself from utter failure, I made a call to the national plant grower, Monrovia, the “Horticultural Craftsmen” company  before leaving Los Angeles and left a “cry for help” message on Nicholas Staddon’s voice mail. Nicholas is in charge of new plant introductions for the company and probably not the person who could help me out, but his was the only contact information I had. I jumped on the plane to New York before I could hear back from him. I felt like a blind person without a cane when I arrived in New York.

The day before my television appearance, I  worked with Al DeLuca, art director for the show and some of his assistants. They provided me with pots, soil, decor, and detailing materials. I was almost ready, but I had no plants for the container gardens. “No plants, no garden,” I thought. 

Nicholas Staddon from Monrovia called me back just as I was starting to feel doomed. Nicholas got in touch with the one Monrovia’s northeastern sales managers, Chris Rubino and  arranged to have Chris help me out. Chris came through like a hero!


Plants from Monrovia  were used by Shirley Bovshow on the CBS Early Show.

Chris Rubino of Monrovia personally visited a few of his territory stores in New Jersey and brought a car full of beautiful plants into the city for me to choose from!  Chris canvassed his stores in the rain and drove through Manhattan city traffic to get them to me with no promise that he or his company would get any credit. The generous-spirit that is the hallmark of gardeners everywhere was alive and active in Chris and all the professionals who made my presentation possible.

There was one  another gentleman, Rob, who feeling compassion for me, opened his store, (Empire Cut Flower on West 28th Street), after hours  and let me in to buy some very important curly willow and red twig dogwood that were central in one of my potted designs. Berkeley Booth of American Specialty Glass was another hero, who sent me on overnight delivery,  a box-full of recycled and tumbled glass in a rainbow of colors that I used to bring color to the container gardens!

On the morning of the television appearance,  I was filled with joy when I saw the potted arrangements handsomely displayed on the set of the Early Show.  I stood before the camera smiling and excited because the gardens were ready for their close-up thanks to the many hands that brought the pieces together for me.



Watch Shirley Bovshow on the CBS Early Show

4 Comment

  1. Hi Lin,
    Thanks for watching the CBS video. Monrovia grows consistently great quality plants. I appreciate their innovation and attention to detail. When Monrovia stamps their name on a plant, it has their gaurentee. The plants may cost a little more, but worth every penny. The sales people are also very passionate about gardening and are truly generous.

  2. Enjoyed your CBS segment. You were great! Happy to hear that you like Monrovia plants and that they were so helpful. It’s one of my favorites and I have many of their plants in my garden. I will look for the tumbled glass.

  3. That is exactly how I feel Anna. The gardening community is very special and even the industry pro’s are generous with their time and resources. Garden blogging has also brought lots of gardeners from all over the world together in communities such as Blotanical, GardenWeb, ColdClimate Gardening to name just a few.

    Now when I travel to new towns, I’m going to look up some of my local blogging friends and have them on “emergancy line” in case I need some last minute help from people who know where to find the good stuff locally! We are not alone!

    As far as your son is concerned, that was funny! I’m glad I made a good impression on him. Let’s whip up some activity:
    “Attention, FlowerGardenGirl’s son seeks high energy but low demand woman, ala Shirley Bovshow who can work under pressure, smile and not let anyone see her sweating. Must cook like Mama!”

  4. It was a great segment. It was very difficult for you and you showed a lot of grace. I could watch you sell ice cubes to eskimos. The story that took place behind the scenes is what really makes us fellow gardeners bond. I will remember this story when looking at a Monrovia plant vs. a less expensive option. I will remember what they did for you and that all the difference. I’m loyal even if it cost a bit more. I don’t think I’ve had a single Monrovia plant ever die on me or any of my clients. Makes me fell good to know they are just as hard working on the people side of things. Great story—-and you did really well……your good looks helped too!!!

    I was replaying it back for my oldest son who came home to visit this weekend. He wanted to know who this Edenmaker was I kept talking about. He didn’t believe I knew someone famous. He’s not married—-and he said to me….Momma–what plants!! He needs a high energy clone of yourself. You know any young woman, single, who would like to marry a very professional young man with a good old southern accent? He hates it when I play matchmaker!!!!

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