Perhaps you know my next guest from her television appearances or her Garden World Report? Shirley Bovshow is a garden designer, and she regularly writes about her work as a gardener and designer at her site called Edenmakers. Here are a few fun ‘Shirley’ facts.
“I was approached by a celebrity look-alike producer and asked if I was interested in being a “Sophia Loren” impersonator when I was 22 years old. I was leaving my office on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood…. In the 12th grade, I taught my “Honors American History” class for the whole week! I asked the teacher if I could do a special presentation on a Monday and he liked it so much, he asked me back each day- for a week!…I attended seminary and thought about being a missionary before I married my Jewish, secular, husband!…I sing and have never lost a dance contest!”
My Favorite things: Shirley Bovshow
1. I live for a great view in the garden. If there isn’t one, I create one!
2. Succulents- nature’s living sculptures.
3. The friendliness and down to earth nature of most gardeners.
4. The Upsy Daisy planter insert- it has revolutionized my work. Less soil, less weight!
I’m an “inspiration magnet!” Everywhere I go, the muses follow me. My problem is not finding inspiration, it’s knowing when to stop. I always carry a notebook, laptop and camera. I also wake up at night and write down the ideas I get in the wee hours.
1. An interesting shadow pattern on the sidewalk became the inspiration for a landscape layout for a project I was doing. I literally stopped in my tracks and stared at the floor and started sketching a rough layout for my client’s yard.
2. I found inspiration for my “living succulent tapestry pillow” while watching “Citizen Cane.” There was a scene where I saw a beautiful embroidered curtain for a second. It had large cabbage roses that reminded me of sempervivums and echeverias poking through the material. After the movie was over, I attacked my outdoor pillows, took the filling out of them, inserted moss and started planting my succulents through them.
3. When I hear a foreign language that I can discern, I immediately crave that particular ethnic cuisine. I hear Punjabi or Farsi being spoken and I can taste the “aloo gobi” or “fesenjun.” I can cook from sensory memory so I don’t need a recipe either. This is why I’m not a petite woman. I LOVE food and cooking for my family and friends!
4. Let’s not get started on ideas for garden video. In the movie, “The Sixth Sense” the main character was a little boy who claimed to see “dead people.” I claim to see “completed video series!” For some reason a single word can trigger a tsunami of video show ideas that I either write down or record myself a video message for later.
It’s exhausting being me, really it is!
Best Garden or Design Advice Ever (Given or Received)?
“Less is more” and whenever possible, try to integrate “double duty design” or plants that do more than just “stand there and look pretty!” Retaining walls can function as built-in seating, edible plants can be used as hedges, for shade and of course, to feed the family.