It has been interesting…the questions about the Northwest Flower and Garden show. Who is Courtney Goetz, garden designer?
Here is your introduction
She is my 17-year-old daughter. She has two older sisters who had already started school when she was born, so she was my sidekick when I had a small garden business in Idaho. She became a child of the garden by osmosis. She simply absorbed her environment. She learned botanical names and rattled them off to customers as if they were her natural language as she puttered in the greenhouse with an oversized watering can.
Fast forward to 2004
In 2004, I built my first display garden at the show and Courtney was too young to help us build, but when the show opened, she came and handed out brochures. As I watched her work the crowds she was a natural, answering questions about plants, not intimidated at all by the massive crowds. I wondered if she were to design a garden for the show, what it would look like.
A child of the Garden Grows
This was the garden I produced in 2005 based on Courtney’s ideas. The centerpiece of the garden was a beautiful wood greenhouse made to look like a tree house resting on purple painted Madrona tree branches. Courtney was once again too young to help us build, but I still remember the look in her eyes when she saw the completed garden for the first time. Magical! She handed out brochures during the show again and she was an absolute pro. I had a woman pull me aside with a smile and say, “who is that child?” she is spouting off botanical names and telling great information. She was impressed and I was proud.
As time went on, Courtney helped build for the 2007 and 2009 shows. She finally was able to experience the creative hum of how the show really is built. Show garden building has always been a family affair with my two oldest daughters and husband pitching in. After the show in 2009, we were having a discussion around the dinner table and it came up that my rotation to do the show next would be her senior year in high school. That crazy light bulb went off over her head, as we began to chatter about how fun it would be to make it her senior project.
Follow along as Courtney and I blog about the final countdown to the show in February.