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About Your Horticulturist (My Education and Philosophy)  

  • As a horticulturist, I offer consultation, design and installation services for your estate, be it a city lot, or 10 acres. I have gardened professionally in three states and in many different venues. This, along with my formal education, gives me a sense of perspective that enables me to communicate clearly with you and to educate you about plants and what is possible for your garden. My knowledge encompasses pest and disease identification, soil health, landscape construction, design, and above all a wide knowledge of many different kinds of plants.

  • I grew up in Ohio and attended Ohio State University. My Bachelor’s degree is in Horticulture, and my Associates Degree is in Landscape Construction. Over the last 30 years, my experience with plants has included garden center work, landscape installation and nursery work. I have also been employed in public and private estate garden settings, where I’ve handled everything from plant propagation, interfacing with outside contractors, garden tours and work with volunteers and interns.

  • In 1989 I moved from Ohio to the Hudson Valley region of New York, to be employed as the alpine and woodland garden curator at a 12-acre semi-public estate called Stonecrop Gardens. It was there that I developed a real love of unusual plants that continues today. Here in Florida, I take every opportunity to experiment with different species in my client’s gardens. I am delighted to provide you with an unusual and unique palette of plants. Aren’t you tired of seeing the same 25 plants in every yard? I’ll help you safely experiment with species native to Florida and from all over the world, to create a diverse, ecologically healthy, place of beauty.

  • Seventeen years ago I moved to St. Petersburg, Florida. For five years, I worked solely with one client, to create a beautiful garden that consisted of annuals, perennials, vines, shrubs, edible plants and an ever-changing display of potted plants. Since then, I have worked with other clients, helping them create new gardens or renovate existing landscapes.

  • I often use the term “garden” and “landscape” to make a point. I consider a landscape as a creation to be viewed. Other than maturing, it goes through little change over the years. A garden, on the other hand, is designed with change in mind. Set within a backbone of permanent plants, a garden may contain annuals, perennials, experimental plants, and perhaps even edible plants that are expected to come and go. I can design a landscape or garden for you, or a mix of the two that fits your taste and maintenance requirements. I specialize in gardens.

  • I believe in appropriate maintenance and water conservation. I know when and how plants should be pruned or staked, and how they should be maintained. I don’t walk away after the installation. I am with you for the long haul, because the better your garden looks, the happier you will be.

  • My goal is to garden as organically as possible When the right plant is in the right place, it is unlikely that you would need to spray chemicals. My knowledge of pests and diseases will guide you. I want to help you create a beautiful outdoor living space that will keep Mother Nature in mind. Contact me to arrange a consultation: marybeth@advancedartofgardening.com

Contact me:
Mary-Beth Wagner, Horticulturist
Advanced Art of Gardening
1835 Montana Avenue NE
St. Petersburg, FL 33703
PH: (727) 743-5543

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