Saturdays with grandpa

Reed Dillon learned to appreciate landscapes as a youth thanks to his grandfather.

  • February 25, 2013
  • Kristen Hampshire

Reed Dillon got a taste for gardening and an appreciation for great landscapes as a young boy, working alongside his grandfather in the yard. Dillon helped picked onions, prepped beds and even helped his grandfather lay out a 50-acre tree plan for a local hospital in his Hutchinson, Kan., hometown.

“I remember going out with my grandfather in his Jeep Bronco and he was very precise, very detail-oriented,” Dillon says of the two full Saturdays they spent mapping out a tree plan. “I remember seeing his survey laid out, and every (tool) had its own place in the bag.”

Dillon enjoyed caring for his garden as a kid growing up in the outdoors. “That’s when I started thinking about plants, in general,” he says. While in college, his grandfather mailed him a copy of Landscape Architecture magazine – more exposure to the garden life, but as a career. Dillon worked summers at the Kansas City Bartlett Arboretum, and after earning a liberal arts degree from the University of Kansas, he went on to Philadelphia to get his masters in landscape design.

Creating memorable outdoor spaces is a passion for Dillon, whose talent for merging indoor and outdoor environments – fusing together the landscape and home – might best be illustrated on his own property. “I designed the gardens at the same time the house was being designed, so it effortlessly flows from the inside out,” he says. “It’s still a work in progress, and something that is very personal to me.”



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