Outreach Blog of the Garden Writers 2014 Pittsburgh Symposium

Monthly Archives: October 2014

“I’m here with my wife; she’s the garden writer. We go to bed and breakfast conferences all the time and they’re. boring. These Garden Writers conferences are much more fun and we learn a lot.”

Robert and Judy Hotchkiss operate Prospect Hill Bed & Breakfast Inn in Mountain City, Tennessee.

Why marketing and why specifically in the hort industry?

“I had worked in trucking and took a two week career-development course to learn what I wanted to do when I grow up. The trucking experience is useful. Turns out moving plants isn’t about the plants, it’s about the trucks. How many plants will fit in a particular truck? Do you need a thermal blanket for a shipment back east?

“The people I get to work with in horticulture really make a difference; I found my tribe.”

Dawn is a garden writer and speaker who provides marketing support at UpShoot, a horticulture marketing firm. She handles traditional marketing, event coordination, new media, and more.

Arriving before dawn at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens provided an opportunity for photographers to capture images of exotic plants in extraordinary lighting. The conservatory itself covers 2.5 acres, and there are further outdoor gardens. Inside, there are rooms dedicated to specific types of plants-ferns and cycads in one room, for example, and orchids in another. There are also rooms for themed exhibits that change from month-to-month. Phipps Conservatory hosts a weekly farm market and they offer educational programs for adults and children. The facility boasts a green roof, a food garden, and a children’s garden – all with emphasis on sustainability.

Honey? Did you leave the gate open? There are more of those pesky garden writers out near the hammock!

“I was about five years old on my grandmother’s property when I saw something fly into a hollyhock flower. I ran over, stuck in my finger, and the flower bit me! Then I saw something fly out of the flower. That got me interested in insects. Later, I learned what bit me had been a bumblebee.”

Bill maintains a stock library of nature photos with an emphasis on images of plants and insects. He is a columnist with Horticulture Magazine and he contributes to several others. He recently published the children’s book “Minnesota Bug Hunt” with the Minnesota Historical Society Press.

“It’s satisfying to draw ideas from a customer and translate them into a design that represents what the customer wanted-even if they couldn’t express it themselves.

“Being involved with garden communicators through GWA helps sharpen my skills as a landscape designer.”

Jan Lowery is a landscape designer whose company, Second Nature, is in Springfield, Virginia.

Header image by Filipe Fortes

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