About & Press
Growing up on a hardscrabble horse-powered farm on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, Nellie Gardner’s life has always been strongly connected to the natural environment. With no formal High School education and no money she earned a degree in Animal Science from Nova Scotia Agricultural College and later a Bachelor’s Degree in Agronomy from Cornell University. Her life-long career in working with the land and studying nature to create healthy and productive farms and landscapes has instilled in her wide-ranging skills from advising on big-picture agricultural projects to creating and running her own cut flower farm. As an artist-meets-scientist, Nellie’s signature design style reflects the beauty and cooperation of nature in everything she does.
Nellie’s instinct in seeing opportunity and making use of all materials to achieve a waste-free work philosophy comes from her upbringing – a life of necessity, reuse, and repurposing. She restores houses and barns, using skills she learned as a child. Her ability to read the story of people and places from days gone by and reignite their hidden spirit has led her to being involved in the restoration and interpretation of several homes and landscapes, including national historic sites and Frank Lloyd Wright designs.
Nellie’s ability to use her love for science and the history and development of agriculture and horticulture, gives her the unique ability to see the potential in any property or land, a rare talent that drives her consultation projects. Her knowledge of both traditional techniques and future sustainability allows Nellie to connect with generations of farmers and growers and lead them toward a better future with a fresh perspective and creative solutions.
Nellie lives with her dog, Farmer, in Spencerport, NY where she teaches workshops and offers classes, and consults on a variety of horticultural and agricultural projects from idea conception phase to execution and harvest.
Tell me about your upcoming project.
Horticultural and Agricultural Consulting, Cut Flower Growing, Problem Solving, Historical Story Telling