I LEARNED OF Joanne White’s garden thanks to an email about The Woodinville Garden Club’s Tour of Gardens. I needed only to see the picture of White’s moongate to know I would write about it. Sadly, most garden tours this summer were canceled, but White’s garden was in tiptop shape.

Cover story: A Redmond gardener finds peace, hope and focus in the life-affirming evolution of her landscape

I expected the garden to be fabulous, but White added even more enjoyment to the experience of visiting it. I happily could have spent the day with her, soaking up her wise words and feeding off her devil-may-care vibe. She doesn’t take life too seriously, and I liked her immediately.

She took the time to walk me around her huge garden (at a safe distance) and answer questions well outside of the typical garden variety. I feel I’ve made a new friend.

Years ago, White used her garden as a respite from caretaking for her ailing husband (who since has passed away). Today, people are turning to their gardens for the same reason — some things never change. Being outdoors and connecting to nature brings more peace into your life.

Writing about gardens has taught me so much about plants and design, and I am grateful to everyone who shared their stories and gardens with me. There are many gardening groups and local resources here in the Pacific Northwest, and I encourage each of you to find mentors and learn from them. Get in the dirt, pay attention and slow yourself down — may you always find respite in the garden.