Director of Horticulture Louis Bauer provides the gardener’s perspective on what has been a trying winter. Louis arrived to head up the horticultural staff at Wave Hill in January after serving for ten years as Director of Horticulture at Greenwood Gardens in New Jersey. His appointment here is a coming home of sorts, as his first position as a gardener was at Wave Hill, where he worked for nine years under the leadership and vision of our founding Director of Horticulture, Marco Polo Stufano.
It feels as though the snow will never be gone, and that it has been a terrible winter. But from the plants’ perspective, it has been kinder than several of the past stormy winters. There has been no storm damage to our trees, and the snowfalls came in such a way no branches broke under their weight.
It has been a little difficult for some of the plants that have evergreen leaves above the snow—they are already showing signs of the bleached color that we call winter-burn. But they will shed these and make new ones this spring.
For the gardeners, being kept inside for so much of the winter, compared to most years, is starting to provoke some anxiety. We anticipate having to start a little later than usual. That will mean rushing to catch up with the pruning and clean-up in March and April. The bottom line: we hope to be spared a sudden, early arrival of spring’s warm temperatures, as that would only accelerate our work pace to break-neck speed.