This Week's Podcast: Into the Woods -- Mark Richardson
Click on the small black arrow on the bar to listen, or the MP3 to download the show:Our guest this week is Mark Richardson, the new Director of Horticulture for the New England Wild Flower Society based at Garden in the Woods in Framingham, Massachusetts. Mark went through the Longwood program for Professional Gardeners and then took on the roll of Student Programs Coordinator before running the adult education program at Brookside Gardens in Wheaton, Maryland. Now he has the challenge of discovering ways to improve the visitor experience of the 80-plus-year-old garden, and make sure that the plantings meet the Society's conservation goals and focus on New England natives.
Fortunately, he will be working with a terrific staff of enthusiastic, dedicated young horticulturists, including Nate McCullin, who was a guest on the show (5-14-12).
“As I'm sure you can imagine, it will be several years before we see the start of any major changes,” Mark said. “I'm hoping in the meantime to make some minor, incremental changes that will accomplish two things: 1) create a more unified garden experience and 2) relieve some areas of frustration/confusion in the garden.”
I know what he means. The garden is a bit crowded, with so many wonderful areas too close together. You walk from a woodland to a bog in a matter of feet. There are also areas that feature broad North American habitat types and genera, when the focus could really be more on New England natives that would appreciate the climate and grow better.
But don’t wait. If you are a lover of wildflowers, Garden in the Woods is the place to see them – week by week through the spring: orchids, trillium, ginseng. One of Mark’s goals is to extend the interest through the seasons, as seen in the fall photo, above, by Steve Ziglar.