So where to begin?
I guess my earliest memories of the garden were at my Grandparents’ large country home. ‘Nana’ was a skilful gardener, and ‘Nandad’ who was by profession a surgeon, liked nothing better than to move large amounts of dirt around with a bobcat – a landscaper at heart. I didn’t realize until much later, how enthused I had actually been about the gardens surrounding their home – my sister once asked me ‘how did you know all the names of the plants that were in their garden?’ I guess it was in my blood even then.
Later though, we inherited this property. At first of course I was thrilled – the wide open spaces, the beautiful gardens, and endless opportunities to explore the countryside. However, my enthusiasm for the garden waned when it became my job to weed the very large cucumber patch. I whined that it was hot and dusty – as a young teenager, what I really wanted to be doing was working on my tan on the shores of nearby Georgain Bay.
I sullenly vowed then that I would never have a garden.
Fast forward several decades and destiny it seems, had called – I was in the first graduating class of the Calgary Zoo’s Landscape Design Certificate Program. I was handed my first client on the last day of class and contracted to team teach that same program the following year. I went on to develop and teach additional design classes for the zoo and continued to do so until the zoo discontinued their horticultural programming in 2016. In addition I run my own Landscape Design and Consulting business year round.
And I do indeed have a garden – now a seasoned gardener, I have been meeting the challenges of gardening in Calgary for 30 years. And never one to pass up an opportunity to share my expertise and passion with others, I also lecture, speak and write on the subject whenever asked.
This blog then, is one more way I can do that.Enjoy, Sue