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Michelle Provaznik

Michelle Provaznik

Michelle discovered a love of gardening when she and her husband joined friends in renting a community garden in Arlington, Virginia. Several years and two states later, she turned her passion into a career by studying ornamental horticulture at Foothills College in Los Altos Hills, California. While in school, she worked at a local nursery, gardened on a private estate, and interned at a public garden. A move back to Colorado introduced Michelle to the challenges of gardening in the Mountain West, where she ran her own horticulture maintenance company for six years and served on the nonprofit board of a developing public garden. In 2008, Michelle became the executive director of the Gardens on Spring Creek, the botanic garden in Fort Collins. Since then she has grown the Gardens on Spring Creek by constructing gardens and overseeing visitation, programs, volunteers, and partnerships. She is excited for future programming in the new facility as it works to fulfill its mission of enriching lives through horticulture.

1. What do you like most about gardening in your region?

Nothing is ever the same from year to year. Each year brings new opportunities and new challenges.

2. What’s the biggest challenge to gardening in your region?

Same as above!

Lavender Twist® redbud
Lavender Twist® redbud. Photo: courtesy of White Flower Farm


3. What plant are you jazzed about in your garden right now?

We added a Lavender Twist® redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Covey’, Zones 5–9) near our bubbling rock water feature last year. Redbuds are a little “iffy” in our climate, but its shape is amazing, and I can’t wait to see it bloom for the first time. It will remind me of other parts of the country where we have lived.

4. What was the last plant you killed?

There have been too many to count—I am always trying new things. We planted a new berm last year with shrubs and perennials and I can’t wait to see what emerges in the spring. I’m sure a trip to our favorite nursery will be inevitable.


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