Garden Scouting with Executive Editor Jenny Andrews

Garden Scouting with Executive Editor Jenny Andrews

June 24, 2010
Photo by: Debra Prinzing

I do it all the time — visit and tour gardens that might just make it onto the pages of Garden Design magazine. And yet, achieving the “get” is not always that luxurious. It’s fun and rewarding. But also hard work. 

Successful garden scouting requires lots of telephone calls to set up appointments. It means I have to lean on my personal connections to cajole invitations from reclusive garden owners or rock star designers. And it demands that I put way too many miles on my Volvo odometer. A lot! (Thank goodness for NPR.) 

Most of all, this job means being extremely open to everything I see, while also keeping out a discerning eye for that magical glimpse of a perfect story. 

It’s alot like being on a treasure hunt when you don’t know the ending, but I wouldn’t have it any other way! 

Jenny Andrews, Garden Design's executive editor, was in Los Angeles a few weeks ago for a four-day scouting marathon. As she put it, it felt like we were college roommates for four days ... probably because Jenny ended up staying with me for most of the time. She got to experience the craziness of the Prinzing-Brooks household with kids, dog, schedules, and more. And, we put 700 miles on my car in four days. We were both exhausted by the end. 

But oh goodness, the gardens. Thanks to many of the talented designers and landscape architects who are friends of the magazine, we were invited to see some amazing places. Here is a sneak peek. You never know. I can’t make any promises, but you may see these properties show up in the pages of Garden Design in the coming year! 

You'll have to read my extended post to see more of our adventures, including a highlight —touring the beautiful and sustainable property of actor Patrick Dempsey and his wife Jill Fink with their designer Scott Shrader. We came home with a dozen eggs from McDreamy's free-range chickens and yes, we scrambled them for breakfast the next day. It's a small reward for all our hard work!