Friday, April 16, 2010

The Changing Face of Gardeners

I would say most people's image of a "gardener" or one who enjoys plants in general is that of a Miss Marple type: a meddling old biddy that spends her retirement years tending roses and tomatoes.

Slowly, there are signs of this image changing. Plants are becoming hip. There is, of course, Gayla Trail who, in my opinion, speaks to a younger generation of gardeners with her hip crafts, urban lifestyle and easy-to-understand growing information. There is also the First Lady. A new style icon that also gardens? Interesting. Etsy, a site geared towards hipsters and 20-somethings, has a wide variety of sellers creating stunning terrariums. And, from the makers of Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters, there is Terrain at Styers an utterly hip nursery in PA.

The latest sign for me was the movie Penelope. It's a modern fairytale geared towards tween girls (and, apparently, me). Penelope, the title character, lives in a room full of terrariums and dreams of becoming a horticulturalist. The rich girl with amazing clothes wants to become a horticulturalist and even gives a lowdown on Helleborus orientalis on screen. Say what?!?

What will be interesting is to see if gardening really takes off with the younger generations, which I count myself among. We have notoriously short attention spans and want everything NOW. But gardening isn't really about *now*. It's about waiting for plants to mature, appreciating the texture of conifers in the winter when nothing else is in bloom, and anticipating the first summer tomato. Gardening has already helped me with my patience (which I'm sure Sprout will appreciate) so maybe it can help others?


  1. There is nothing like yanking weeds to blow off the resulting steam from days in the office, 2 kids, etc. I can't wait for my first taste of tomato, eaten just like an apple, still warm from the sun.

  2. Yes! Gardening is finally cool! ;-)

    I finally get to be cool being myself.