Grace Elton is CEO of Tower Hill Botanic Garden, a 132 acre garden in Boylston, MA. Overlooking the Wachusett Reservoir with views of Wachusett Mountain, this 30 years old garden is overseen by the 175 year old Worcester County Horticultural Society. Elton has a strong public horticulture background with experience at premier gardens in the United States and United Kingdom. While serving as director of horticulture, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Richmond, VA garnered national recognition as a top 10 botanical garden by USA Today and achieved the National Medal from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. She also served as horticulture supervisor and adjunct professor at the 118 acre Ambler Arboretum of Temple University in Ambler, Pennsylvania.
As a recipient of the prestigious Martin McLaren Horticulture Scholar award presented by the Garden Club of America, Elton studied botanic garden education, practical horticulture and landscape design in England at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, Royal Horticulture Society Rosemoor, the Eden Project, and the Chelsea Physic Garden; and in Scotland at the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh. Elton has served as lead horticulturist in award-winning group efforts at the 2006 Chelsea Flower Show and the 2009, 2010, and 2011 Philadelphia International Flower Shows.
Elton has a Master of Science in public horticulture with a certificate in museum studies from the Longwood Graduate Program, University of Delaware. Her Bachelor of Science degree is in environmental horticulture with a public gardens management specialization from University of Florida. She serves on the Board of Directors of the American Public Gardens Association (APGA) and as a member of the Longwood Visiting Committee. Elton was honored as a “Top 40 Under 40” for Richmond, VA’s Style Weekly Magazine in 2013. She is a contributing writer to publications such as Fine Gardening Magazine and Richmond Magazine’s R-Home. Her hobbies include backpacking, organic vegetable gardening, quilting, and beekeeping.