Green Minds Project (2008)

Photo by Gayla Trail

I wrote a while back about a body of photographic work I am slowly building called Green Minds Project.

A quick recap:

    Green Minds is a portrait project exploring gardeners and their passion for growing greenery. I am seeking to validate all kinds of gardening practice. This includes anything from a sprawling lush paradise to a single plant growing in a coffee can. Gardens include but are not limited to: community gardens, allotments, backyards, balconies, rooftops, front yards, containers on a patio or street corner, store windows, fire escapes, windowsills, guerilla gardens….

As spring approaches and my schedule for 2008 starts to unfold I am seeking new subjects for the project. Since I live in Toronto I am primarily limited to gardeners in this area. However, I am going to be in San Francisco and Austin, Texas this coming spring and would love to take advantage of those trips to schedule some photo shoots. Other trips may pop up so do not hesitate to get in touch regardless of where you are. I am seeking a diverse group of gardeners and gardens to photograph. Skill level and the maturity of the garden do not matter. I don’t care if your garden is as small as a basil plant in a tin cup. I want to take your picture and hear your story!

Please email me: Your contact info, a few words about the garden and the gardener and the location.

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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13 thoughts on “Green Minds Project (2008)

  1. Gayla, you can come see my garden anytime! But I would prefer that it be documented when the Purple Cornflowers are first blooming… I can’t recall if that is about the same time that the Japanese Cherry tree is in full bloom… I will guess that the end of May and first few weeks of June would be when my garden is putting on the best show. Now that I have a greenhouse, I have no idea what “the new usual” will be for the plants around my place… So, pencil me in for around that time. I seem to remember standing in awe of the Monarch Butterflies on the Milkweeds… When? I’dunno. I’ll update you with any shift the garden schedule. I have just realized that my gardening style has been all “experimental art” and no “documented science”.
    P.S. I know that the “real gardeners” are grinding their teeth right now. …so, yes, I have just realized how important proper documentation is, if you want to “really garden”. Yep. Just now. Ding!

  2. Greg
    A fun way to document your garden is to take pictures of it during the seasons or month to month. If you have a digital then it’s really easy. I also find it helpful to take pictures so that you can remember what needs dividing in the spring when the garden looks bare and what lies beneath the soil is a mystery. I also recommend to gardening clients that they keep the tags from the grower’s pots and then refer to their garden design in order to figure out where each plant is in their garden.
    ps. Your cherry tree probably flowers in the spring, whereas the Echinacea will flower mid-summer(depending on your zone)

  3. I think this is a really great creative project. I know every gardener loves to gloat about their garden. My mom spent 3 years trying to grow figs. She even purchased an apparatus that would help spread the tree out. She covered it with plastic in bad weather, etc. But my favorite from her garden has always been bleeding hearts.

  4. Hi all,
    Heather, thanks for the tips! Will do… this year, honest!—
    Gayla, if you want to see picks of my greenhouse being constructed, I have posted links on the YGG “Greenhouse, winter…” forum, and of course, on my profile photo pages. …I use the same user/member name on CSing … “alphatango”.—

  5. gayla!!! when are you coming to austin? I am only an hour away and would love to meet up and see what going on in austin. Then you could sign my book!

  6. Brynn: I have always wanted to try figs but they are such a pain in the butt to grow here. Deep admiration for your mum.

    Irene: I don’t know yet what’s going on. Austin was a go and now I’m not sure if I can go so until it is certain I can’t make any plans.

    Greg: Yep in this area echinacea will be in bloom around late June/July/August depending on the weather.

  7. Hello Gayla!

    You are welcome to my garden anytime! We’ve removed all grass and are beginning a garden in our front yard (on a hill, under a Norway maple so it can be tough!) and I have a completely fun and overgrown garden in the back. I’m in Toronto too!

  8. Hi Gayla
    I am so excited you are coming to Austin. I would love to have you come visit my plants, cactus and succulents.I also have lizard santuaries as I call them. Rocks with holes so kitty can’t get at them.I also have lots of seeds I will soon be starting in tin cans.Even the beautiful datura.I can hardly wait. I will also be attening plant swaps this spring,maybe you could come with.

  9. Hey Gayla! Can you let me know when you had planned to come to Austin? Were you planning on doing an event? I realize it may not happen, but I would still love to hear the details just in case. I don’t live far.

  10. Hey Gayla! Can you let me know when you had planned to come to Austin? Were you planning on doing an event? I realize it may not happen, but I would still love to hear the details just in case. I don’t live far away.

  11. Manda: I’m not planning to do an event in Austin. I’m tagging along with my spouse who is attending SXSW. I’m going to focus on doing some gardeners’ portraits instead.

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