Learn how to choose the right plants from Austin designer Mark Word

January 30, 2023

Photo: Nicole Mlakar/Tribeza, courtesy of Mark Word

Garden Spark, my personal speaker series about garden design, concluded its successful 6th season on February 23rd with a presentation by Austin designer Mark Ward, principal of Ward + Carr Design Group. Mark will show us how to think about and choose successful plant combos for our garden. For a fun twist, he’s using a fantasy-baseball metaphor to talk about plant selection. Beat up!

For anyone like me, who knows very little about sports, much less fantasy baseball, I want to assure you that it’s simply about picking the best list of players for your fantasy team – or in this case, the best list of plants for your fantasy (or not-so-fantasy not) the garden.

So put on your manager cap, grab your ticket and join us on February 23rd to learn more about plant selections from one of Austin’s best designers. Seating is very limited, and tickets can be purchased here.

You can learn more about Mark in an article I wrote about him garden design.

Imagination, baseball, and plant selection

Choosing the “right” plants for your garden means looking beyond the basics of function, maintenance and site adaptability. Sensibility, suitability, culture and neighborhood attitudes also come into play. Austin designer Mark Ward explores ways we can create successful gardens without a statistics-driven approach.

Speaker bio

Mark Ward’s interests in art, graphic design and botany led to a 35-year career designing commercial and residential landscapes. The work of his Austin-based company, Word + Carr Design Group, is noted for its focus on place-making and sensitivity to regional character.

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Manfreda, Purple Heart, and Foxtail Fern: Shade-tolerant, low-maintenance companions

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Learn about garden design from the experts here Garden Spark! I host private talks with inspiring designers, landscape architects, and writers several times a year in Austin. These are limited-attendance events that sell out quickly, so join the Garden Spark email list to be notified in advance. Just click on this link and ask to be added. You can find this year’s speaker lineup here.

Plan to join Budding Plant Sale and Festival March 18 at John Fairy Gardens in Hempstead, TX. There will be rare and unique plants, as well as art, ceramics, jewelry, food, drink, music and other entertainment for the whole family. Members have early access and get free. Non-member admission is $5. Children under 12 are free.

Experience a surreal garden at the Zilkar Botanical Garden, with an enchanting neon-art display throughout the park, food and drink, music and dance, surreal performers and interactive art sculptures. Surreal costumes are encouraged! 25% of event proceeds benefit the Zilker Botanical Garden Conservancy. April 6 (VIP Night), April 7-8 and April 13-15 runs from 6:30pm to 11pm.

All material © 2023 by Pam Penick for Excavation. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.

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