BRAD LANCASTER is the author of the award-winning “Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond” and co-founder of DesertHarvesters.org. Since 1993, Lancaster has run a successful permaculture education, design and consultation business focused on integrated regenerative approaches to landscape design, planning and living. In the Sonoran Desert, with just 11 inches of annual rainfall, he and his brother harvest about 100,000 gallons of rainwater a year on an eight-acre urban lot and adjoining right-of-way. This water is used to support food-bearing shade trees, gardens and a landscape that supplies wildlife habitat, beauty, medicinal plants and more. Lancaster seeks to empower clients and the community to make positive change in their lives and neighborhoods by using natural resources.


DOUG TALLAMY is a professor in the department of entomology and wildlife ecology at the University of Delaware, where he has authored 85 research publications and has taught insect taxonomy, behavioral ecology, humans and nature, insect ecology and other courses for 35 years. His research goal is to better understand how insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities.

PATTI O’NEAL has been an instructor at the Gardens since 2000, specializing in sustainable vegetable gardening. She has been a featured speaker at regional conferences and organizations. She is a horticulturist for Colorado State University, focusing on food systems and urban agriculture and she coordinates the Master Gardener program for Jefferson County.

JOSEPH TYCHONIEVICH is a southeast Michigan resident who was named by Organic Gardening Magazine as one of “...six young horticulturists who are helping to shape how America gardens.” He is the author of “Plant Breeding for the Home Gardener” and “Rock Gardening: Reimagining a Classic Style.”


KATHLEEN VELO is a photographic artist who uses non-traditional media and cameraless processes to explore water quality and environmental issues. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and is in numerous public and private collections. She is the recipient of various grants and awards including artist project grants from the Fulbright commission, the United States Department of State and the Arizona Commission on the Arts.


SAXON HOLT is a professional garden photographer and has photographed for 25 books including “Hardy Succulents” by Gwen Kelaidis and “The American Meadow Garden” by John Greenlee. His website, PhotoBotanic.com, is dedicated to his garden photography and self-publishing projects. He is a Fellow of the Garden Writers Association who awarded his e-book, “Good Garden Photography” the best overall garden book of the year in 2015.