Photo by: Mark Siegle/Seattle Times

This month we want to say a special thank you to JoAnn Amundson for her years of service on the board of directors at the Kruckeberg Botanic Garden Foundation.

JoAnn grew up on a dry crop farm in Minnesota.  Like many families from the WWII era, they had a large vegetable garden to provide much of the family food.  This was the extent of her gardening and outdoor plant experience until she moved to Shoreline, WA.

Farming was happily replaced by college, marriage, family, and work.  Her initial career was in healthcare, where she became a Certified Medical Technologist working in a medical laboratory.  She and her husband raised their children in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

After the children were grown, she went back to school and earned a degree in Interior Design.  She owned and operated Creative Kitchen and Bath in Lynnwood for ten years, a design and construction company.  The company specialized in remodels of kitchens, baths, and other home additions.  After selling the business, she traveled extensively with her husband, Bruce, for several years before returning to Shoreline.

Woodwave, by Bruce Johnson

Woodwave, by Bruce Johnson

Jo has accomplished many things during her retirement years in Shoreline.  Her major retirement project was to remove blackberries and weeds from their home along Blue Heron Creek.  Together Jo and Bruce developed the landscape plan for large sculptures and plants at their home in Innis Arden.  Their spectacular garden has been a major destination place for many garden clubs.  Along the way, Jo and Bruce have also made major donations of sculptures to the City of Shoreline, including ‘Woodwave’ in the Kruckeberg Botanic Garden and the ‘Lantern’ at City Hal in March of 2014.  They also sponsored the Garden of Creativity summer art program for 17 qualifying Shoreline middle school students to be led by four exceptional professional artists at the Kruckeberg Botanic Garden in July of 2014.

Her garden is always in transition since she can’t pass up a new or interesting plant or sometimes to try a different color palette for specific areas of their landscape.  The other major emphasis of their garden is their outdoor sculpture collection, purchased over the years and placed appropriately in the garden.  The flower, shrubs, and trees, along with the art, are a real joy to care for and share with friends and interested people.

Jo is a member of two art organizations and is an accomplished watercolor artist.  Some of her other interests are traveling to experience new cultures and visiting art galleries wherever they may be. The Amundson’s contributions to the garden are immeasurable and will be with the garden forever. Please join us in thanking JoAnn, and wishing her all the best in her next endeavors.