You can easily find our headquarters in Great Barrington, MA, in the spring or summer. The gardens are bursting with an endless array of flowers. Nature is an important part of Jane’s ethos. Even though April is National Garden Month, we are always appreciative and respectful of everything fruiting, blossoming, and seeding. Below is a Q&A that Jane did in celebration of National Garden Month. She discusses why she loves gardening and being outdoors.
What inspired your passion for gardening?
According to legend, on the day of my birth — March 24, in the same bedroom where I slept for the next twenty years — my grandmother took me out into the garden and wrapped me up in a blanket so I could see the pear trees in full bloom. It’s probably called imprinting. It worked, whatever it was. Growing things makes me happy, and if it happens to be edible or in flower form, then even better. Nature always enthralls me. The beauty and variety of wildlife can make me lose myself. It is a joy to work with nature and create a garden. Watching birds, bees, and butterflies enjoy the fruits of your labor is indescribable.
What fruits and flowers do you grow that inspire your beauty products?
I am inspired by gardening to be creative, to understand my place within the world, to accept the cycle of the earth, and to embrace the power of water. It also inspires me to get my hands dirty to feel the interdependence of all living things. It’s impossible to replicate nature, but I find it very tempting to try and incorporate its smells, colors, and textures in our products. From the rusty iron oxides to bright red geraniums, I have never seen a color in nature I didn’t like. Nature can combine a wide range of colors in a single plant without them clashing. Kiss Me is a rose that combines pinks of all shades, from dark to light. It takes my breath away. The rose has a wonderful fragrance. My black currant bush gives off the best bouquet. The smell of black currants is there when I break a leaf. I watch the bushes bloom; the flowers become tiny green currants. The currants get bigger and darker until I can pop one into my mouth. Somehow, I can taste the sun.
What is your best advice to gardeners like you on sun protection?
Faces and hands do not have UV protection. I start out wearing gloves, but they always end up in the garden. I apply Powder-Me sunscreen to my hands and arms and use Dream Tint on my face. LipDrink is always in my pocket. Always wear a hat. A hummingbird once kept trying to drink the nectar from a hat I wore with pink flowers. This was a very special moment, but gardening is filled with them.