Northern & Central Midwest Editor

Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association
Kate Jerome

Northern & Central Midwest Editor

Kate Jerome
Pleasant Prairie, WI

Swiss chard is not only edible, but beautiful in any garden.

My perennial garden provides lots of color all summer.

Rosemary is a great perennial herb to grow in containers and keep close by for cooking.

Mulch keeps my onions weed free.

Coming from a long line of gardeners and home preservers, Kate started gardening in high school and eventually began growing her own tomatoes and herbs in pots on the balcony of her first apartment.

Never without a garden from then on, she decided to turn an avocation into a vocation. She completed a Master's Degree in Ornamental Horticulture from the University of Wisconsin while working as a perennial flower technician on a landscape maintenance crew, an intern at the Chicago Botanic Garden, and a supervisor for an interior landscape company.

She now has two lively daughters, ages 6 and 8, who "help" with garden chores. Her husband, a soil and water scientist, is also avidly involved in the garden, and her three cats and one Labrador retriever assist by keeping rabbits and chipmunks at bay.

Her garden consists of 3 acres of oaks and hickories, a 35-year-old perennial border, a sunny herb garden, fruit trees incorporated into the landscape, and a full-scale vegetable garden in the front yard (the back yard is shady!).

Kate is department chair of the horticulture department at a local technical college. She also writes for Chicagoland Gardening magazine and has a weekly garden column in her local newspaper. She is a regular guest horticulturist on local Wisconsin Public Radio station; consultant and writer for Chicago Botanic Garden and Olbrich Botanical Garden in Madison, Wisconsin; and a horticulture instructor for Chicago Botanic Garden, the University of Wisconsin Parkside, Gateway Technical College and College of Lake County. She has written books on houseplants and oriental gardening, and has written for several national horticulture magazines.


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