Contact Valentine-Gardening

969 N. Longfellow St.
Arlington, VA 22205

Phone: 703-300-1499

Email Louise

Please note that I am not currently accepting new design or installation clients. If you have a quick question, please give me a call but understand that I am generally not available for consultations.

Photo of Louise Gardening

About Louise Volintine

My passion for gardening started at age 5; my mother couldn’t keep my hands out of the dirt; she tells me I started planting seeds right after I learned to walk.  My parents grew all our food and raised chickens-organically, before that word became the buzzword for modern times-so I was blessed with learning those skills of planting, maintaining and harvesting the crops. My early days marked my connection to the land, sinking roots right along with the local flora and fauna.

My career after college took a different turn-health care management-but I continued to garden every spare moment creating backyard gardens and habitats with an eye for design and beauty. I loved sharing my joy of gardening with the neighbors and helped them with pruning, planting, making healthy soil and diagnosing plant disease. I encouraged other gardeners to create lost bird and butterfly corridors, to enrich their soil with recycled garden wastes and to try native plants instead of invasive exotic species. I especially liked watching the neighborhood children get involved and inquire about how things grow. I realized my heart was in teaching and creating gardens. New seeds were sown when I enrolled in GWU Landscape Design program to begin my new career. Enhancing my knowledge of plants and design I learned more about native plants and eco-systems.

After taking many courses and attending seminars the seeds of my dream career began to grow. I wanted to share my joy and knowledge with others to create beautiful and diverse landscapes that would interconnect with the surrounding land. I like to create, in my own gardens as well as the gardens I design for others, a beautiful and unique space, personal and shared, with a diverse habitat for wildlife. For gardens provide a much needed corridor linking backyard landscapes with the surrounding forests, streams and parks. 

I want to make it easy for others to make their space livable, beautiful and environmentally friendly. Gardens are not static but change with the seasons and over time. They are not maintenance free but require human intervention and design. They can be fun and aesthetically pleasing but energy efficient and ecologically sound. While I design with mostly native plants I include exotic species that are not invasive. Educating clients about invasive species and encouraging alternatives sometimes means a change in aesthetic. (The violets you thought were weeds may actually become an effective ground cover to reduce more invasive weeds from taking over!) 

The more I design and create gardens, the more I see the value in relationships. The seeds sown become the flowers for our tables and the sweet nectar for bees and hummingbirds. Shrubs and climbing vines that provide privacy and artful borders become food and nesting sources for birds. Trees planted for shade and fall color provide highways for squirrels as well as the future for generations to come. Join me in creating gardens of grace, beauty and joy as we make a difference locally and globally, person to person, garden to garden, one plot at a time.