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Mary Johnson and Dale Lefler, both of Carmel, check out wildflowers at the 2003 Pacific Grove Wildflower Show, held every year at the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History.

Spring is just around the corner, and you know what that means — spring garden shows, tours and other events are beginning to bloom.

And one of the largest events of all, although not in Monterey County, deserves mention because of the participation of several local businesses. The 27th annual San Francisco Flower & Garden Show this year will feature Succulent Gardens of Castroville, Elkhorn Garden Dahlias of north Monterey County, and Sierra Azul in Watsonville as exhibitors.

Succulent Gardens is no stranger to the event, having exhibited there for several years, and last year winning Best in Show for commercial exhibits. Owner Robin Stockwell is also well known for his work in vertical gardening, and in 2010 collaborated with the design firm Organic Mechanics to create a succulent-covered structure at the show that won a gold medal. The nursery specializes in growing high-quality succulent plants; for information, see

Also slated for the show is Elkhorn Garden Dahlias, which grows 550 varieties of colorful dahlias as well as 900 species of rare and specialty flowering perennials. Information: Sierra Azul, just over the Monterey County border near Watsonville, is a favorite with gardeners seeking drought-tolerant plants;