Interview the Gardener: Darla Van Bergen

Interview the Gardener: Darla Van Bergen

What’s your favorite plant and why?

There is no way I could pick a favorite plant. In my garden I lean toward PNW natives and under-utilized and unique shrubs and trees. There are also so many fabulous conifers for every situation and species rhodies, and citrus, and edibles and …


What’s your best gardening tip?

I read a long time ago that the best thing you can add to your garden is your shadow and I truly believe that is so true. The days when I just grab my clippers and a bucket and aimlessly wander to clip and weed I make the biggest difference and enjoy myself so that I am encouraged to be out there again. It will never work if your garden is just work and you don’t take time to appreciate all it has to offer. Also, plant those trees in the fall when the soil is still warm and the rains help you keep them well watered to get established before they start pushing new growth in the spring. Both you and the tree will be happier. 


What’s going on in your personal garden right now?

We are replacing our greenhouse and moving it to a larger, sunnier, more functional place. Also, we have an area where some plants have matured that we are creating a new shade garden.  


What’s your favorite thing about working for Cornell Farms?

I get to interact with some really delightful people, I get to learn something that is new and exciting to me constantly and I get to see multiple instances of beauty every day.