Meet Kim Reiss Horticulturist
Kim’s first stab at gardening dates back to when she was 13 and tending a bed of marigolds next to the family’s driveway. It came to an abrupt end while weeding one afternoon when she saw a garter snake. The result: a 37-year break in gardening.
After college, marriage, children, and a successful corporate writing career, Kim went back to school and got a two-year degree in horticulture and has been happily gardening ever since.
She has worked at Sugar Creek Gardens since 2005 and launched the St. Louis Hydrangea Society in 2012. Kim is currently President of The St. Louis Hydrangea Society. In addition to hydrangeas, Kim’s passions include roses, shade gardening, unusual annuals and perennials, fairy gardening, and poppies. Her home was among those featured on the Sugar Creek Gardens garden tour.
She counts more than 50 hydrangeas in her beds, with the favorite being a macrophylla called ‘Ayesha,’ dating to the World War II era. She’s a real cottage garden enthusiast and comfortable with anything old-fashioned — daisies, phlox, hollyhocks, delphiniums, and clematis. Her No. 1 perennial recommendation is almost always Geranium ‘Rozanne,” because of its season-long blooming power. And she never met a David Austin rose she didn’t love. Snakes are not allowed in her large and out-of-control Webster Groves flower garden.
Her garden talks at Sugar Creek have included topics such as container gardening, dividing perennials, starting seeds indoors, propagation, the basics of gardening and hydrangeas 101.