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Gardens By Mardi - Mardi Dover - Principal & Garden Designer

Mardi Dover, CPLD

Principal & Garden Designer

An eighth-generation North Carolinian, Mardi grew up on a small farm in Marion, North Carolina, surrounded by animals, flower and vegetable gardens, and horse pastures, all tucked in a little valley in the Pisgah National Forest. So began her love of the Earth’s natural beauty and diversity.

She brings her longtime interests in art, horticulture, and the natural world to the discipline of garden design, and her outdoor spaces reflect a marriage of these fields.

Mardi received degrees in art history from Davidson College, social work from UNC-Chapel Hill, and garden design (with merit) from Oxford College of Garden Design in England.

She studied English art and architecture in London and completed horticulture training at Haywood Community College.

Mardi is a Certified Professional Landscape Designer, a North Carolina Certified Plant Professional, a former licensed clinical social worker, and a former North Carolina Licensed Landscape Contractor. She has received Gold and Bronze Awards in Residential Design from APLD, the Association of Professional Landscape Designers.  Mardi has held numerous leadership positions in the industry, and she currently serves on the APLD National Board.

Mardi was a founding member and former chair of Women for Women, an initiative of the Community Foundation of WNC whose mission is to improve the lives of women and girls across the region. She currently serves on the Steering Committee of the Historic Newton Cemetery.

When she bought her current home in 1999, the landscape was a nearly blank canvas on a double lot in a historic North Asheville neighborhood. Since then, the development of her garden has provided practical experience, inspiration, and opportunities for experimentation.

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Sarah Davis, PLA

Landscape Architect

Born and raised in the Midwest, Sarah left it all behind after college to take a job with a landscape architecture firm in Asheville. She brought with her a strong Midwestern work ethic and a refusal to say “y’all.” Guess which one has changed?

Sarah holds a landscape architecture degree from Ball State University and has had her hands in designing large-scale mountain developments, university parks, and residential gardens. A long stint at a local nursery helped her develop a solid foundation of plant knowledge.

Sarah studied architecture and garden design in both London and Italy, immersing herself in historical gardens. She worked as an intern for a landscape architecture firm in Boston, specializing in urban design, and gained hands-on horticulture experience working at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden.

A trustee at the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy, she loves being part of a passionate group of people dedicated to preserving our mountain land. She is also on the planning committee for Speaking of Gardening, an annual two-day symposium that attracts international speakers and sold-out crowds of garden design professionals and enthusiasts. Sarah lives in Asheville where she has been cultivating her garden since 2005.

"Mardi took a disorganized yard where plantings blocked our home, and she turned it into a beautiful garden. I loved that she was on site everyday of the installation and tweaked the design as needed."

J. M., Asheville, NC

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