In a word–HOT. At least this afternoon and evening. You gardeners down here deserve medals (and kudos) for creating beauty amid the assault of heat.
The sessions today probably caused the most neurons to alight in my head. I’ve surely got lots of ideas to impart in various forms over the coming weeks and months, particularly on the themes of style and substance in garden communication. Our love and passion for gardening should find its way to people in creative, engaging ways while maintaining thick horticultural substance. Voodoo Donuts, a favorite donut shop in Portland, Oregon, is known for their slogan “The Magic is in the Hole!”–a perfect gardening slogan. But that comes with an exception. I think we’re pretty good at teaching people about digging holes, planting stuff, and putting together container gardens.
But we’re not great at talking about plants in anyway other than as simply products or merchandise. The phrase “installing plant materials” takes a twist on something a carpet layer might say, rather than a landscaper installing living, thriving biodiversity in an outdoor space. The way we communicate says so much about what we believe, and when we’re not willing to talk about our work in cogent, compelling ways, we lose serious marketing power.
So take this as an exercise. Comment on the photos below. Talk about what you see and let’s have a dialogue about dialogue. What do these three images say to you, and more importantly what do they say (if anything) about you and the work that horticulturists do?