Bedner's Farm & Greenhouse


Our gracious grower, Lauren, is at home in conservatories, botanical gardens, farms and greenhouses, is partial to plants that look like tiny pairs of pants and loves googly eyes on just about anything.

It’s nice to know the people behind the plants. Especially the ones who are generous about sharing their experience and expertise. This is one of many Bedner’s team members who loves plants and plant people and who makes the farm and garden center an even better place to be.

Meet Lauren

Name: Lauren Weeks

Role: Grower

Education: I majored in Fine Arts at the University of Rhode Island when I discovered my passion for plants midway through my degree. Too late for a change of major, so I picked up a minor in Horticulture and was able to get a strong foundation of knowledge there.

After graduating, I relied on work experience doing internships at different botanical gardens to get me where I needed to go. I also minored in women’s studies and Italian!

How long have you worked in horticulture and/or at Bedner’s?

I did an internship at Phipps Conservatory the summer of my junior year. Then my senior year of college, I worked in the botanical garden and greenhouses at school. I’ve continued to work for a few other botanical gardens until I came to Bedner’s Farm three years ago.

Favorite things about your job? I love having a job where I can be active, be outside every day, take in the seasons and enjoy the wildlife around me. And I love learning the routines and rhythms of the other living things in my surroundings.

There are finches who nest above the perennials in the store, and hummingbirds that zip in and out of the greenhouses to feed on flowering hanging baskets. Plus, so many kinds of bees visit flowers, toads hide under plants in the greenhouse and there is so much plant growth from week to week.

Being around all that life is such a joy.

Top 3 Plants?

Oh gosh, this is the hardest question! Honestly, it depends on the season. I adore ephemerals, and a couple of my favorites are the Houstonia caerula, or bluets—they’re just so tiny and joyful, Dicentra cucullaria, or Dutchman’s breeches—how can you not love flowers that look like tiny pants?

I also really adore Monarda bradburiana, which smells amazing and has great fall color.

Best piece of garden advice? I mean, I know it’s a go-to, but ‘right plant, right place.’ If you know what type of environment you have, it makes it a lot easier to pick out plants that will thrive in that situation. Learning where plant occur in nature can really help you decide which plants to put in certain locations.

Something interesting about you? It doesn’t take much to delight me. I get very excited about small things like seeds germinating, having a full refrigerator, getting mail, finding toads in the greenhouse and when someone puts googly eyes on things.

Interests and hobbies? I like to make things with my hands. I’m a master of none, but I like to knit, sew, Sashiko (a type of embroidery), macrame, carve wooden spoons, throw pottery, refinish furniture and garden (obviously).

But I also like to read, hike and listen to podcasts and books.

Favorite vacation spot? I grew up seven miles from the ocean, so I always love the beach, but I also love being in the woods.

Proudest accomplishment? I can’t think of anything specific, but I think I’m just proud of where I’ve gotten so far.

Favorite game, team or sport to watch or play? Probably not the answer expected, but I listen to several actual-play Dungeons & Dragons podcasts. It’s collaborative storytelling at its best!

I’ve never really been especially athletic or competitive, but I’ll happily watch the Bruins hockey. I also like watching Cleveland Guardians baseball with my husband, Sam.

We hope you’ll say hello to Shannon next time you’re in the garden center!

The people of Bedner’s Farm & Greenhouse are here to inspire future plant people. We care about the vast benefits to our environment, health and quality of life, and would love to share it all with you. Please ask if you have any questions. We’d be thrilled to help if you need us.