Dec. 11, 2017

Media contacts:

Heather Maughan, Garden Club of Honolulu

Tel: 808-254-4622

Lesa Griffith, HoMA
Tel: 808-532-8712


The city's biggest horticulture event of the year honors Honolulu floral pioneer May Moir and celebrates breadfruit

WHAT: Rooted in Paradise, a Garden Club of America Major Flower Show presented by The Garden Club of Honolulu
WHEN: May 11-13, 2018 
WHERE: Honolulu Museum of Art, 900 S. Beretania St., Honolulu
COST: Museum admission—$20 general admission, $10 Hawai‘i residents and active-duty military living in Hawai‘i, free for members and youth age 18 and under (no matter where theyʻre from)
INFO: 808-532-8701, (publishable)
High-res images available on request.

HONOLULU, HAWAI‘I—Held only every three years, The Garden Club of Honolulu’s Major Flower Show is always highly anticipated, attracting thousands of people over three days. The next one—Rooted in Paradise—blooms May 11-13, 2018, at the Honolulu Museum of Art.

This competitive event is one of only three Garden Club of America major flower shows held across the country in 2018—the other two will take place in Greenwich, Connecticut, and Memphis, Tennessee. Nationally recognized Garden Club of America judges will fly in from the mainland to judge the show and give awards for excellence.

This year the show’s Floral Traditions exhibit focuses on the Garden Club of Honolulu’s long ties with the Honolulu Museum of Art by honoring May Moir, one of Hawai‘i’s most revered floral designers and gardeners. She was part of the team behind the museum’s famed floral program for almost than 50 years, from 1950 to 1998. She headed the program starting in 1963, creating fresh, innovative tropical arrangements that welcomed visitors. 

Moir's many students included Alice Guild, a pioneering Honolulu businesswoman—she blazed a trail as the general manager of Ala Moana Center in the 1970s, and was later a director of Central Pacific Bank and one of the first women to serve on the board of a major Hawai'i corporation. But she is perhaps best known as the former executive director of the Friends of ‘Iolani Palace. For the Floral Traditions exhibit, Guild is leading a group of Garden Club members that will interpret a selection of Moir’s classic arrangements based on images from Guild’s photo archive and Moir’s detailed notebooks. All members of the group have been part of the museum’s floral team, and almost all of them now reside at Kahala Nui. In preparation they have been conducting basement archeology at the museum, digging up original pots from the 1960s that Moir used.

“The Garden Club of Honolulu would like to recognize the talent and spirit of such a remarkable woman as May,” says Rooted in Paradise chair Priscilla Growney. “It is a perfect component for a flower show that celebrates the cultural heritage and island memories that anchor us to this island that we call home.”

At the heart of Rooted in Paradise are the spectacular floral design and horticulture exhibits that people line up to see—the creative, architectural arrangements and diversity of flora, from dramatic sprays of orchids to simple stately trees, are jaw droppers. In addition, the show includes exhibits of photography, botanical jewelry and needlework. 

Each Major Flower & Horticulture show also includes two special exhibits—one focused on conservation, and one focused on education. As its conservation exhibit, Rooted in Paradise will feature “Trees: Essential to Island Life,” a depiction of how Hawai‘i’s trees are vital to the islands in many ways, from water-capturing canopies to food resource. The education exhibit, “Global Hunger Initiative,” will transform the museum’s Mediterranean Courtyard to illustrate the work of the National Tropical Botanical Garden’s Breadfruit Institute. It will especially highlight the institute’s new proprietary method for propagating breadfruit, or ‘ulu, on a large scale.

Also part of Major Flower & Horticulture Shows is a horticultural “challenge class,” for which a plant is chosen and cultivated. In keeping with the conservation and education exhibits, the 2018 challenge is breadfruit. In September, The Garden Club of Honolulu’s Horticulture Committee distributed plantlets from the Global Breadfruit to members. Their carefully cultivated trees will be shown in burlap-wrapped containers and after the show will be distributed to the public by the O‘ahu Master Gardener program.

The show is a massive undertaking, with The Garden Club of Honolulu holding classes throughout the preceding year to educate members in the show’s competition categories. Experts from Hawai‘i and the mainland lead workshops and programs to further expertise. 

The show is open May 11 to 13, Friday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. On Sunday, May 13, the Honolulu Museum of Art Café will offer a Mother's Day lunch menu—flower show guests can make it an extra special day for Mom.

The Garden Club of Honolulu is a member club of the Garden Club of America, which has 12 regional zones. The Garden Club of Honolulu is located in Zone XII, which includes Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawai‘i, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington.

The purpose of The Garden Club of Honolulu is to stimulate knowledge and love of gardening, horticulture, floral design and nature photography; and to promote and participate in the restoration, improvement and protection of the environment through programs and action in conservation, civic improvement, and education.

The Garden Club of Honolulu held its first major flower show in 1986.


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About the Honolulu Museum of Art

One of the world’s premier art museums, the Honolulu Museum of Art presents international caliber special exhibitions and features a collection that includes Hokusai, van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet, Picasso and Warhol, as well as traditional Asian and Hawaiian art.

Located in two of Honolulu’s most beautiful buildings, visitors enjoy two cafés, gardens, and films and concerts at the theater. The museum is dedicated to bringing together great art and people to create a more harmonious, adaptable, and enjoyable society in Hawai’i.


Honolulu Museum of Art: 900 S. Beretania Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: 2411 Makiki Heights Drive
Honolulu Museum of Art School: 1111 Victoria Street
Honolulu Museum of Art at First Hawaiian Center: 999 Bishop Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Doris Duke Theatre: 901 Kinau Street (at rear of museum)


Honolulu Museum of Art: Tues–Sun 10 am–4:30pm; closed Monday.

Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: Tues–Sun 10am–4pm; closed Monday.

Admission (permits entry to both museums on the same day):

$20 general admission; $10 Hawai‘i residents and active duty military living in Hawai‘i; youth 18 and under are free.

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