3:29 min May 02, 2022

Woodloch Resort's Mother-Daughter Gardening Team

Meet the mother-daughter duo who make gardening magic happen at Woodloch Resort.

Anyone who has spent time at Woodloch can attest this is a place of beauty. And behind all the gardens, perennials, holiday decor and all is the gardening mother-daughter duo of Ellen and Dusty.

“So many people are like: I can’t work with my mother,” said Dusty Pierson. 

“Come on, I’m fun!” laughed her mom, Ellen Dunn. “You are,” Dusty admitted.

Ellen has 20 years as head gardener at the various Woodloch properties. Dusty came on board 16 years ago and every year, through every change of seasons they’re together on the job..

“We’ve been doing this so long together. We hop out at a job, we both have our parts we do, we dig in and do it,” said Ellen.

On this day, Ellen and Dusty and their coworker Cathy are preparing for the Easter holiday weekend at the resort making the iconic entrance look as welcoming as it does.

“Our summer flower order is coming next week so we need to get the pansies planted,” said Ellen.

Whether they’re digging in the dirt or hauling heavy planters, Ellen and Dusty have formed a bond deeper than any roots can go. And that’s true for the relationship they have to Woodloch and its guests.

“It’s a good feeling, then you have families coming here to enjoy the resort. When they find out we’re a mother daughter team, they’re happy to see that,” added Dusty.

For Ellen, being a mom is her biggest accomplishment and working with flowers also brings her happiness. Doing both together is a bonus. And soon, Dusty will be able to say the same.

“So in the fall we have a big event happening,” said Ellen. “She won’t be here for a while. She’s going to have a baby.”

This mother-daughter gardening tag team admit it can get testy at times to work with family.

“It’s good. We do fight sometimes I’m the stubborn one, I stick to my guns,” said Dusty.  “We’re pretty good at always coming back around.”

When they both look at how fortunate they are to work at Woodloch together doing what they love, both cannot help but feel thankful.

“I’m grateful I get to work with my mom every day,” said Dusty. 

“There she goes,” said mom Ellen, as her daughter teared up. 

Ellen and Dusty are blessed beyond measure to share time together creating a backdrop for Woodloch families and their own family.