Green With Envy

Forget the thumb. If all your digits happen to be verdant, this is the sale for you

If you're bored by the selection of plant life at the local nurseries and you've exhausted the offerings your landscaper can get his mud-covered hands on, you need to take your horticultural hopes and dreams one step further. Mark your calendar for Friday, June 12, when "A Rare Affair: A Collectors' Auction of Rather Unique Plants" (even the name sounds aspirational) will take place at the Chicago Botanic Garden in north suburban Glencoe.

The seventh biennial event will feature unusual, hard-to-locate and rare plant life from around the globe, which will be auctioned off in what is sure to be a heated contest. Also up for offer are exotic trips (such as floral-focused jaunts to Keukenhof Garden in the Netherlands, as well as to Brandywine Valley to visit the gardens of Chanticleer, Winterthur, Mt. Cuba and Longwood) and other treasures for the grand outdoors.

Hosted by the Women's Board of the Chicago Horticultural Society, "A Rare Affair" will begin at 6PM with a cocktail reception and the kick off of the silent auction. The exciting live auction, led by president of Christie's Fine Art Auctioneers Steven J. Zick, will start at 8PM along with a seated dinner inside the McGinley Pavilion, which overlooks the Gardens of the Great Basin at Chicago Botanic Garden.

Coveted plants up for auction will fall in the following categories: Annuals & Tropicals, Art of Foliage, Classy Conifers, Collections for the Connoisseur, Creme de la Creme, Culturally Challenging, Fabulously Formed, Perennial Palette, Shady Characters, Signature Containers, Sweetly Scented, Travel Trophies and Wild About Woodies. (And you thought things sounded intriguing before.) Plant experts will also be on hand from such local outdoor resources as Chalet Nursery and Garden Shops, Northwind Perennial Farm, Charles J. Fiore Nursery, Markus Specimen Trees and the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Tickets to "A Rare Affair" are $250 per person and can be purchased by calling 847-835-6944.

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