John Coykendall

Blackberry Farm, Relais & Châteaux

John Coykendall, Master Gardener at Blackberry Farm

Walking amongst stalks of corn and rows of pumpkins, Master Gardener John Coykendall explored the world of gardening at an early age with his grandfather, Congressman John Jennings. John always knew he wanted to create and care for some of the finest produce in the world.

Travelling through Europe and across the United States, John has collected not only great secrets but also seeds from the most successful gardens in the world. He brings the knowledge of decades in the garden, along with centuries-old heirloom seeds that he has collected from the region and all over the world.

John uses his skills and knowledge in gardening in partnership with the Seed Saver’s Exchange to help repopulate seeds that are near extinction. He is not only a valuable member of the seed saving community, but he is a guest favorite at Blackberry Farm. He is always willing to share stories about the heritage of a seed, or traditional gardening and farming methods, and pass the rich history of a regional story on to younger generations.