About Us

Our Mission is to Celebrate the Natural World

Our mission is to cultivate a love of the natural world, where all life can thrive, by creating gardens inspired by the nearby community’s flora and fauna.

We are known for our curated selection of uncommon plants and as stone artisans. For more than 30 years Avant Gardens has been known as a destination nursery and landscape installation firm, specializing in design, planting and hardscape construction.

Chris and Katherine Tracey, principals, Avant Gardens

Chris Tracey is a studied builder who understands the rhythm of stone in the natural landscape of New England. He knows that when you gather people, plants and stone together on the land, something magical happens – a dynamic quality of physical form and social function, that is also the trademark of the landscape designs and installations of Avant Gardens.

Chris has practiced his craft of historic dry wall building and repair for decades. As a master stone artisan, he uses the traditional techniques documented in New England and the British Isles. He has led dry stone workshops for local and state property conservation interests as well as conducted lectures for both private and trade organizations. In Dartmouth, Chris and his crew of skilled stone artisans have restored and maintained many iconic town stone structures. His work as a craftsman and an instructor is widely praised and respected.

Formally trained as a painter and textile designer, Katherine Tracey’s appreciation for color and pattern has also informed her passion for horticulture. For over 30 years, Katherine has been experimenting with the unexpected on the grounds of Avant Gardens, and her innovative designs have earned many notable honors. Driven by a life motto to grow everything at least once, she has cultivated a design aesthetic that incorporates the best uncommon plants for the New England landscape.

Katherine has been a featured lecturer at Wave Hill, Ladew Topiary Gardens, The Horticultural Society of Maryland, Tower Hill Botanic Garden, the New York Botanic Garden, the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, and many other Gardening Events. Katherine has contributed articles and photography to Fine Gardening Magazine and posts regularly in the blog Garden Foreplay.

Open for the season!

Spring Hours M-Sat 9-4, closed Sundays

closed Monday, Memorial Day 5/27

(508) 998.8819
710 High Hill Rd. Dartmouth MA 02747