Jennifer Jewell, Writer

Personal Statement

Gardens are some perfect combination of history, culture and nature, of meditation, celebration and prayer. They are produce and they are poetry.  Gardens are refuge from the world and, in my life, gardens are among my deepest, best connections to the world.

Sourced in and contributing to our evolving natural history, gardens hold vast potential. The impulse to cultivate the land for beauty and utility is timeless – the Ancient Egyptians cultivated their places, early Native Americans cultivated theirs, we – whoever we may be - cultivate ours. This primal impulse transcends gender, age, politics, socioeconomics and religion. I am a firm believer that in this impulse to cultivate and garden in the places we live, we find meaning. In this cultivation of place, we can possibly find solutions we have found nowhere else to the problems of the world, which we find everywhere.

The word garden does not mean just one thing – and there's not one way or right way to get to what they are and how they’re best achieved. Gardens are both more and less obvious versions of our selves, our fingerprints, our signatures, our reflections, our legacies– as individuals and as cultures. 

-   January 2016           


Jennifer Jewell is the creator, writer and host of Cultivating Place: Conversations on Natural History and the Human Impulse to Garden, airing on North State Public Radio (KCHO/KFPR,

Having founded in 2007, since 2010 Jewell has been the curatorial assistant and the curator of the native plant garden at Gateway Science Museum on the campus of CSU, Chico in Chico, CA. She received a bachelor of liberal arts degree from Harvard University, worked as an arts and literature editor and writer and in time turned her focus to writing, speaking and advocating for the importance of gardens/gardening/gardeners in our world. Jewell’s work has been featured in publications including Gardens Illustrated, House & Garden, and Pacific Horticulture. She sits on the board of Pacific Horticulture and is a long-time member of other national and regional gardening organizations. From 2008 - 2016 she created, wrote and hosted the weekly, regionally-focused In a North State Garden on North State Public Radio.

All photographs on are by Jennifer Jewell, unless otherwise noted.