The Art of the Herb Garden
On Thursday, April 28, South Orange resident, artist, and gardener Rossana Martinez spoke with Lisa Danbrot about gardening as inspiration for art, growing food and cooking. Rossana shared tips for creating edible and herb gardens using simplicity as a guiding factor and offered practical info on planting and growing herbs and perennials, including:
- which herbs are perennials in our region
- shade herbs vs. sun herbs
- how to keep herbs fresh and preserve them for the winter
Rossana Martinez is a visual artist interested in the environment. She studied at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY, where she received an MFA in Sculpture and Printmaking and met her husband, Matthew Deleget, a fellow artist. They founded a gallery in Brooklyn almost 20 years ago called MINUS SPACE.
Rossana wears multiple hats as an artist, gallery owner, and manager of a small family foundation in NYC. She is a garden tester for Gardeners, an employee-owned company in Vermont.
In 2010, her art practice shifted to focus on the environment and sustainability. She transformed her living environment with the creation of an edible and herb garden on her rooftop in Brooklyn. As their city apartment became smaller for the family, they moved to South Orange in 2019. One of the reasons to move to the Garden State was to become a little more sustainable as a family. Their 1926 house has become an art and restoration project. One of the first projects on their neglected yard was to create an edible garden on the southern side where the kitchen is.
The garden is her place to find inspiration for art, growing food, cooking, and movement. During the pandemic, the garden became a safe yoga studio for her and her neighbors. She’s a big fan of simplicity in the kitchen and garden, which is why her favorite plants to grow are herbs and perennials. She’s always happy to share her gardening experiences and knowledge with the community.