• World gardens
  • The art of gardening
  • Flower lore
  • Leading tours in the gardens
  • Working with students
  • Garden storytelling
  • Mature garden and orchard restoration
  • Local fruit diversity and fermentation


I was lured to this corner of New York State not just by the beauty of the Finger Lakes region, but by the distinct charm of these particular gardens. I was fascinated by how organically they seem to nestle in our Botanic Gardens’ little bowl-shaped valley, a sweet, green basin gently squeezed between the Cornell campus and the hamlet of Forest Home, and hugged by wooded natural areas all around.

I am responsible for the co-curation and maintenance of the Martha Howell Young Flower Garden. Additionally I also manage and maintain the Mullestein Hillside Garden.

I spend most of my time monitoring, fine-tuning, and updating the garden displays, with the assistance of student workers, interns, and volunteers. I enjoy discussing with visitors the horticultural interest and cultural significance of the plants and flowers featured, as these lustrously ascend to prominence and gracefully decline with the seasons.

I like to work alongside my garden neighbors, particularly the Robison York State Herb Garden’s, whose focus links thematically to the Young Flower Garden. In fact, the flower garden expands, via its interpretative booklets, upon similar cultural themes, placing flowers through their known art depictions in a multiplicity of historical and geographical contexts. I work with the education staff to develop garden interpretation along these same lines. I also lead garden walks and talks for volunteers, students, and the general public.

I have been a gardener most of my life by cultural heritage, hailing from a still significantly agrarian corner of Northeastern Italy, and a professional horticulturist by trade for more than 10 years, having been formally trained at the New York Botanical Gardens’ School of Horticulture.