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A visitor snaps photos of some of the vegetation on display at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany.  The exhibition takes place in at three sites in the city and covers a total of 119 acres.

A visitor snaps photos of some of the vegetation on display at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. The exhibition takes place in at three sites in the city and covers a total of 119 acres. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

One of many floral arrangements on display at the horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. The show offered tips to visitors on how to arrange plants and dress up their gardens.

One of many floral arrangements on display at the horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. The show offered tips to visitors on how to arrange plants and dress up their gardens. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

Visitors to the horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany, rest their feet under a few trees at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress.

Visitors to the horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany, rest their feet under a few trees at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

Colorful wildflowers are spotlighted in this exhibit at the horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. It is one of many themed gardens featured at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress.The show covers a total of 119 acres at three sites in Koblenz.

Colorful wildflowers are spotlighted in this exhibit at the horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. It is one of many themed gardens featured at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress.The show covers a total of 119 acres at three sites in Koblenz. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

A wooden archway is one of the highlights of the horticulture show's venue at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress in Koblenz, Germany. The show also has two other venues in the city.

A wooden archway is one of the highlights of the horticulture show's venue at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress in Koblenz, Germany. The show also has two other venues in the city. ()

A youngster looks for tadpoles at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress in Koblenz, Germany, during the biennial horticulture show.

A youngster looks for tadpoles at the Ehrenbreitstein fortress in Koblenz, Germany, during the biennial horticulture show. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

Passengers look over the Rhine River from an aerial cable car that climbs nearly 400 feet to link the Blumenhof courtyard with the Ehrenbreitstein fortress during this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany.   The show is located at three sites and covers a total of 119 acres.

Passengers look over the Rhine River from an aerial cable car that climbs nearly 400 feet to link the Blumenhof courtyard with the Ehrenbreitstein fortress during this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. The show is located at three sites and covers a total of 119 acres. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

The "Deutsches Eck" (German Corner), where the Mosel River meets the Rhine River, is seen from an aerial cable car that links the Blumenhof courtyard with the Ehrenbreitstein fortress at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz.

The "Deutsches Eck" (German Corner), where the Mosel River meets the Rhine River, is seen from an aerial cable car that links the Blumenhof courtyard with the Ehrenbreitstein fortress at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

This succulent, a type of plant that stores water in its leaves or roots, is among the many flowers and plants displayed at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany.

This succulent, a type of plant that stores water in its leaves or roots, is among the many flowers and plants displayed at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

Visitors stroll through one of two flower halls displaying a colorful variety of plants and flowers at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. The show continues through mid-October.

Visitors stroll through one of two flower halls displaying a colorful variety of plants and flowers at this year's federal horticulture show in Koblenz, Germany. The show continues through mid-October. (Joshua L. DeMotts/Stars and Stri)

Chances are you’ve seen her sweet face prominently emblazoned on posters in or near your town, if you live in Germany, of a young girl gripping a wedge of watermelon. The posters serve notice of the latest biennial bow to perhaps one of the most popular hobbies on God’s green earth — gardening.

From now until mid-October, Koblenz is in full bloom as it plays host to the federal horticulture show — Bundesgartenschau — also known as BUGA.

“The main theme this year is change,” said Henning Henn, a BUGA employee, “from something historical to something new.”

Koblenz is an appropriate site, since it’s one of oldest settlements in Germany. Located at the confluence of the Rhine and Mosel rivers, the city is a blend of new and old. That attribute is underscored as visitors ride modern cable cars over the Rhine toward the old cliff-top fortress of Ehrenbreitstein, the largest of three venues used for this year’s garden show.

Visitors to the show most likely will spend much of their time here on the hill, where Europe’s largest fortress complex — apart from Gibraltar — is situated.

For starters, the cable car ride to the fortress is easily the most popular attraction, given its roughly 400-foot climb. And there is the splendid view, not only of the watery crossroads below, but also of the vegetation up high.

On display at this site are thousands of flowers, fruit plants and other flora. Directly across from the cable car terminus is a pair of enclosed halls showcasing plant life of all kinds, from lemon trees and the marshy herb Bacopa monnieri to an array of colorful flowers.

The show’s Ehrenbreitstein site has 50 points of interest, focusing on topics as diverse as roses and moats.

Besides Ehrenbreitstein, the other venues are Kurfürstliches Schloss, or the Electoral Palace, and Blumenhof am Deutschen Eck, or the flower courtyard, where the Rhine and Mosel rivers meet, also called the Deutsches Eck, or German Corner. Both venues are situated along the water.

The three sections are dotted with areas bedecked in flowers and plants. One area by the fortress is devoted to the history of roses, covering a spectrum of colors. In several directions are slices of earth with creative and soothing arrays of flowers of various varieties.

At the palace and courtyard are blossoms featuring a hue of colors from red, orange and yellow to blue, purple and pink. Visitors can purchase flowers and plants as well as gardening tools, souvenirs and food at the show’s “Market Square.”

ON THE QTDirectionsThe garden show is spread over three locations in Koblenz, Germany. Autobahns 3, 66, 61 or 63 will likely come into play as you near Koblenz, which is situated north of Kaiserslautern and west-northwest of Wiesbaden and Frankfurt. Find a parking garage in the city, or follow the “BUGA” signs that will direct you to specially designated parking areas on the outskirts of the city. Shuttle buses will transport you to the venues.

TimesThe ticket office is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Oct. 16. All the venues are open until at least 6 p.m.

CostsA day ticket for adults is 20 euros, which includes a round trip on the cable car. An extra roundtrip excursion costs 8 euros, children 5 euros; groups of 20 or more people pay 18. Parking in one of the specially designated areas costs 5 euros, which includes shuttle bus service.

FoodThere are several snack areas for drinks and treats.

InformationWebsite is: www.buga2011.de.


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