After many years working in investment management, Wilmette’s ADRIANE MCKNIGHT felt the urge to step away from her desk and get her hands dirty while doing something creative. In 2019, she did just that—founding Green With Ivy, a custom four-season container gardening service for North Shore clients. Owning her own business allows her to combine the enjoyment of working with clients with losing herself in designing unique arrangements for containers, a skill she honed working under her mentor, Bridget Schroeder of the Contained Garden. A busy wife and mother of two teens, McKnight particularly enjoys the flexibility of the seasonal work. Along with family time, McKnight devotes her energy to the community. She and her faithful golden, Ollie, are certified volunteers with Paws for Patrick, an organization dedicated to helping kids and teens with depression and anxiety. Whether it’s visiting schools and therapy centers with Ollie or designing one-of-a-kind arrangements for her delighted clients, nothing gives McKnight greater happiness than bringing others joy. Here is how this green thumb stays on-trend.
ON HER NIGHTSTAND
“I prefer something quick and light during the busy planting seasons. I recently finished The Maid by Nita Prose in one sitting. It’s a perfect beach read. Molly, the protagonist, is a quirky yet endearing maid at an upscale hotel who finds herself in the middle of a murder mystery. The ending doesn’t disappoint. When I was contemplating starting Green With Ivy, a friend recommended Creative Confidence by Tom and David Kelley. It’s a terrific guide for those who haven’t quite unearthed their creative force.”
IN HER EARBUDS
“I’m a fan of many music genres but a sucker for pop. I’ve been listening to Dua Lipa quite a bit since seeing her in concert earlier this year with my daughter, Madelyn (first concert since 2019!). Her music is upbeat and perfect for a run or a walk with Ollie. My personal favorites are ‘Levitating’ and ‘Cold Heart.’ When at my desk designing for the upcoming seasons or catching up on paperwork, I’ll often listen to podcasts. I just started The Trojan Horse Affair and it’s been hard to turn off!”
ON HER MOBILE
“No matter how busy I am, I don’t get out of bed in the mornings without first reading the Daily Skimm, which keeps me up to date on happenings in the world. I always sneak a quick peek at Instagram to see what’s trending with my fellow gardeners. My favorite locals: @thecontainedgarden (of course!), @plantparenting, @urbanoasiscontainers, and @homegrowncontainerco. I love this talented and supportive community of gardeners, who never fail to inspire.”
You can follow McKnight on Instagram @green.with.ivy and find out more about her work with Ollie @ollie_the_best_golden or pawsforpatrick.org