HORTICULTURALLY, 2013 WAS a big year for me. I had just graduated from Longwood Garden’s Professional Gardener Training Program and completed internships at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh in Scotland and Lautaret Alpine Botanical Garden in France. It was on the second interview at Missouri Botanical Garden that I caught my first glimpse of the newly-renovated Bavarian Garden. It had been transformed into a rock garden, and I remember thinking, “I would love to have this garden” as I took in the sandstone boulders and beds waiting to be filled with plants. During the interview, I had mentioned my interest in alpine plants and here was a new garden dedicated to alpines! At the same time, I knew I was applying for a different area of the garden, so was only hoping that I would be able to help out from time to time. I moved to St. Louis two months later to start my new position, blissfully unaware of the challenging climate that awaited this novice rock gardener.