We are pleased to introduce the new Head Gardener at Washington Square Park, Guilherme Goncalves! Gui, for short, comes to the Park with gardening experience from Wave Hill in the Bronx, Central Park, and the Highline. “Washington Square Park is a very nice synthesis of what I want,” Gui noted, “The workload is enough to keep everybody busy, more than enough. There’s so much diversity of work and projects.”
A longtime lover of green spaces, gardening has always been a part of his life. “I never looked at it as a career, but more as a hobby.” Gui studied social sciences, but says gardening was always in the background, even while studying. “I was a teacher in a past life. I taught English as a second language abroad. Then, I started a gardening program as a means to teach English.”
We were lucky enough to get an insider view of Gui’s plans for the Park for the upcoming season. He’s looking forward to working with thousands of flowers and plants in a densely-populated space. Gui’s taking inspiration from the current layout of the Park. He noted that the combination of plants, textures, and colors in the Park create a harmonious layout. He mentioned that while some of the Park’s planting beds have this quality, others need a bit more attention.
Gui and the gardening crew start early, which leaves him time for after work fun: his favorite pastime is taking his daughter to their local playground after school. If you’re walking through the Park and see Gui and the team working in the flower beds, be sure to stop by and say “hi.” We cannot wait to see what he has in store for Washington Square Park!