Nurtured by Nature

Hello and welcome! My name is Heather and I am so glad that you have joined me on this journey through the garden and through life.

I realize that I have had a passion for nature my whole life. I have been nurturing plants and animals in every home I have lived in. It began as a child when I lived on a small 5 acre farm in Ohio. We had horses, a cow, pigs, ducks, geese, chickens, cats & dogs. We even raised turkeys one year, but that’s another story. My mom would plant flowers around the house and we had a small vegetable garden. We knew what it was to eat what we grew.

Heather Zindash

As an adult, I lived in many types of homes; dorms, apartments, town homes and single family homes, many with minimal green space. Even if all I had was a small balcony, I filled it with decorative potted plants, hanging baskets, a bird feeder and even a bird bath all chosen for the scale, light and particular environment of that space. Our most recent home in the suburbs of Maryland had enough lawn that it became a blank canvas for my unrealized garden dreams, thus the inspiration for this site.

Gardening is such a part of me, it is like breathing itself. I almost didn’t realize that while I have been home raising our children, I have also been logging many moments, hours, days and years creating a sacred and nurturing outdoor space. A place where our family and friends come together to enjoy.

I have found that the act of nurturing plants and observing nature brings me peace and happiness especially after a long hard day or in times of trial. And, it can be done on any budget in any space.

At first, I was driven to create curb-appeal for our new (to us) home that had been neglected by the previous owners. It seemed easy for me to pull from my Graphic Design and Fine Arts background and create a landscape plan that would accomplish my mission: to create a warm and inviting landscape that would beckon friends and neighbors to come in and stay for a visit.

Next, I focused on the kids. I wanted them to have a safe outdoor space to play and explore, like I did as a child. I began by creating a butterfly and hummingbird garden while also making room for the swing set. The garden vision quickly grew into a whole yard adventure which would unfold in front of each guest as they entered, unveiling little moments of splendor at every turn. Our frequent guests and residents are butterflies, many species of birds, ladybugs, praying mantids, hummingbirds, squirrels, chipmunks, frogs, fish and bats. Some of our visiting wildlife includes turtles, bunnies, deer, snakes and raccoons. Ultimately, I was able to qualify our property as a Certified Wildlife Habitat with the National Wildlife Federation.

Up until this point I have simply been relying on my passion for gardening and my design background to develop our little garden sanctuary. I have mostly been successful but if a garden idea did not work out, I simply chalked it up to “Trowel and Error. I have enjoyed learning from my mistakes.

Certified Wildlife Habitat

Along the way, I decided to pursue more formal horticultural education. I began with the Maryland Master Gardener and Master Naturalist Programs. I enjoyed those programs so much that I went on to earn a Landscape Technology A.A.S. from Montgomery College. In 2018, I became a Certified Professional Horticulturalist. I am also a licensed Integrated Pest Management Consultant. As an IPM Scout, I help Growers, Landscape Professionals, Property Managers and Homeowners protect their plants, properties and their bottom lines by properly identifying plant pests and diseases.

Now, I have pages of notes filled with inspiration that I would like to experiment with & explore in the garden and our local nature parks. Luckily for me, my whole family is on board.

Everyday is a new and exciting experience in our wonderful little habitat. The longer you stay and the quieter you sit, the more entertainment is provided. The kids love going outside to see what new adventure awaits.

Isn’t this the way life unfolds as well? “The longer you stay, the more quietly you observe, the more is unveiled to you and the better you understand.”

Join me as I chronicle my journey through life in the garden.