This post is the first in a series of interviews with people passionate about gardens or food. Or both! There are so many overlaps with design and the creative process when it comes to those two subjects.
As a little background, about 4 years ago I took an intensive, almost 2-month-long course on Landscape Design at the New York Botanical Garden. Kate Turney was one of my classmates, a talented woman with a down to earth vibe, warm smile, and amazing knowledge of plants and design. Here I ask her about what she’s up to, design trends in New York City, her personal relationship with design and her sources of inspiration. Hope you enjoy!
Hi Kate! I’d like to know in general what you’ve been up to since our Summer Intensive class at NYBG. Are you still working in NYC?
I’ve been working on a bunch of fun projects here in Manhattan. Everyone I work with brings great talents, energy, and knowledge to the work that we do. We try out new materials and innovative ideas.
Is there a favorite project that you’ve worked on recently?
Currently I’m doing my first mountain home garden for a client in the Catskills. It is a fun project because we are taking time to look at sun patterns, sit with ideas for months, etc.—rather than instantly create a garden, as we often do in the city, where people want the projects completed yesterday. It’s satisfying to see a client revise her ideas over time, to really sit with the possibilities and limitations of a site, a budget, where sun falls and where it doesn’t, where water collects and where water runs off—all of reality’s stipulations for that particular project. That’s the magic of gardens: reality. Time, the life cycle, how plants and animals and bugs interact, too much water, too little water, lots of heat, lots of cold. . . .