Walking tours of the gardens at Hotel Iroquois on Mackinac Island give guests a behind-the-scenes taste of how Barnwell Landscape and Garden Services selects and plants the inspiring show of color visitors have come to expect each season.
“When they go on a tour, they get a feeling of empowerment, which is really important,” says Jack Barnwell, president of the design/build firm. “That’s one of my goals: to empower people to feel like they can go home and take a little bit of the magic of Mackinac Island and of these gardens with them.”
Barnwell’s plant list is available to the public. “They can hold it in their hand,” he says of the printed brochure he provides Hotel Iroquois guests who join the tour.
The idea is to make these gardens feel accessible, and this is accomplished by Barnwell offering practical tips during his tours to help guests feel at home in the gardens. Resort landscapes can be overwhelming, he points out. That’s not the goal at Hotel Iroquois, where containers are used liberally to sprinkle color, texture and scent throughout patios. Window boxes are brimming with annuals, and the hotel’s garden rooms offer a special view of Barnwell’s work.
By giving guests the opportunity to interact with Barnwell and learn how the gardens were created, they leave Hotel Iroquois with a greater appreciation of its green spaces.
This is one of three stories that appeared in Lawn & Landscape's Business Builder e-newsletter. To continue reading about Barnwell Landscape and Garden Services:
Labor of love: Working by horse and hand, Barnwell Landscape and Garden Services designs and builds stunning resort displays using innovative techniques.
Planting Mackinac at home: Jack Barnwell explains his garden design techniques.