Les Lutz – Heritage Museum & Gardens – Anything But Ordinary

Filed Under: In 2021, June 2021 Issue, More News, Other

What does your job entail?

My title is Director of Horticulture & Facilities Management. I’m responsible for the design, care and management of all of the gardens and property of Heritage Museums & Gardens (a 100-acre public garden). I determine priorities, design new areas and manage a crew of four senior gardeners in the care of the gardens. Our goal is to help to ensure the visiting public have an enjoyable, educational experience at HMG.


How did you get into this field?

When I was in high school I built (of plastic) a small greenhouse and began growing plants. I eventually got a job (while in high school) working for a large plant nursery. After high school I was accepted into a training program at Longwood Gardens, a large public garden 30 miles southwest of Philadelphia. That experience changed my life. Until then I had always assumed I would work in commercial horticulture. Longwood Gardens showed me the world of public gardens. I’ve been in this field now for 45 years. I’ve been at HMG for almost 10 years. I’ve had the pleasure of working at Longwood Gardens (after I graduated from their program), The New York Botanical Garden, Lauritzen Gardens (Omaha Botanical Garden), Salisbury University, and now Heritage Museums & Gardens. I also design gardens privately. Training in public garden management is my education background.


What are your favorite plants and why?

That’s a hard question. I guess I’d have to say I love rhododendrons and hydrangeas. But I also have a very strong inclination toward landscape design. I love to design beautiful spaces, using plants.


What do you like about your job?

That’s easy. Designing spaces that people love. Seeing the faces of the public as they enter the Hydrangea Garden, The McGraw Family Garden of the Senses, or any one of many garden spaces at Heritage. Listening to them talk about the plants, the plant combinations, the beauty of the world of plants. Do you have an out of the ordinary job? Email carol@capeplymouthbusiness to be considered for this feature.