Madison Walter:

A brief history

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Raised in Northwest Kansas, a landscape dominated by crop fields, I grew up keen to learn about tundras, oceans, and basically anywhere that had more than three trees. I quickly discovered a world full of exotic flora and my love of botany grew faster than kudzu in Georgia. This admiration was further fueled by my love of stories. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Disney's animated Alice in Wonderland, and Weslandia by Paul Fleischman showed me plants have a special type of magic for those who stop and look.

In pursuit of this magic, I left the wheat fields behind to attend college in upstate New York with the intent of majoring in plant sciences. After my first year, I found that while lab life was intriguing, I wanted to be in a field where people and plants directly interacted. I was fascinated by the idea of using plants to bring people together and achieve a purpose. Thus, in the long standing tradition of changing majors, I switched to Landscape Architecture. The next three years were spent learning to reconcile the art of the design and the technical science.

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In the autumn after completing my undergraduate degree, I started a master's degree in environmental studies, concentrating my studies on environmental education. I sought, and still seek, to bridge the divide between scientific communities and the general public. Hoping one day my love of plants, my knowledge of design, and passion for educating would help others see botanical world as I see it- full of hope, magic, and mind-blowingly awesome science. 

During this time, I developed a great appreciation for balance, realizing the world's greatest achievements are a result of seemingly opposites coming together. I also discovered, or rather admitted, my passion for educating. I became entranced by the thrills of helping others conquer goals and seeing the child-like amazement when they discovered new knowledge. With three congruently growing passions, plants, design, and educating, I searched for a way to unite them.   

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Currently, I enjoy life with my darling husband and adorable black cat, in beautiful Delaware. We spend our time gardening, playing Dungeons and Dragons, and watching as many movies as possible. I also enjoy making homemade pasta, reading science fiction novels, and tending to my ever growing collection of houseplants. Professionally, I serve as the Urban Agriculture Coordinator at the New Castle Conservation District.