About Jen & This Blog

Welcome to the world of Frau Zinnie!

I began regularly blogging as Frau Zinnie in 2011. (It translates to Mrs. Zinnia — bet you now know what my favorite flower is.) 

Here you will find my writing, photography and personal gardening experiences in my Connecticut, U.S. garden along with interviews with garden experts.

I follow organic gardening methods and grow both ornamental and edible plants. Each year I incorporate more pollinator-friendly varieties, and I'm also working on including more native plants to provide food for the songbirds in the garden.

When I am not in the garden, I work in the communications field as a writer and editor and I am a professional photographer, too (samples of my photography can be found here). I am also available for gardening lectures.

Awesome experiences

In 2017, I had the amazing opportunity to go to California as a #NGBPlantNerd, where I learned a ton about the seed industry. I have been a trial grower for J. Berry Nursery, Proven Winners, Park Seed, Burpee, Darwin Perennials and PanAmerican Seeds and a product tester for the Eco Garden Systems. Any plants and/or products that I receive for review purposes are noted on the blog. I have also been a member of the Garden Writers Association since 2015.

I have been honored to be a guest on several podcasts. The most recent was a live taping for the Down the Garden Path podcast in 2018, where we talked about holiday gift ideas for gardeners.
In 2017, I was a guest on The Vegetable Garden Show and talked about monarchs, veggies and photography. In 2016, I was featured on three episodes of the Still Growing podcast  hosted by Jennifer Ebeling. The first episode included my personal gardening experiences, and I was delighted to be invited back to participate in the Spring Bulb Party. In 2014, I was interviewed by Dave Ledoux of Back to My Garden. (You can hear the podcast here.)

A little more background

I caught the gardening bug early. As a child, I was busy poking marigold and sunflower seeds in the ground while living in Queens, New York. I was blessed to grow up in a gardening family: my mom adored houseplants, my father grew ornamentals and my grandfather grew edibles in every available spot.

All three taught me the basics of gardening  — knowledge I would later tap into when my husband and I purchased our first home in 2009.

I immediately began tearing up the expansive green lawn in favor of flowers and vegetables. And trees. And more flowers. The neighbors originally thought I was crazy, but now dog-walkers and joggers stop to talk plants while I'm outside. It's now the largest front garden on the block – and I spend a lot of my free time outside gardening when I can.

To keep up with what's blooming in my garden or the latest gardening news, you can subscribe to my blog. You can also follow me on Twitter at JenMGardens, on Instagram at Frau Zinnie or on the Frau Zinnie Facebook page. Reach me by email at frauzinnie(at)gmail.com.

Updated 02.02.2020

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