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About Us... Paul and Karyn Schmitt

Paul Schmitt

Paul first started gardening in the Santa Fe area in 1976 with landscaper Marge Viles who, then at age 55, was still fitting stone walls and building gardens with her own hands. After working with Marge off and on for the next five years, Paul began to develop his personal style and set off on his own.

Paul holds licenses in Tilesetting, Irrigation, and Landscaping. He holds Certification in paving installation from the Interlocking Concrete Paving Institution and in Windmill Technology from New Mexico State University. His design training is self taught, using techniques he has learned working with landscape architects and personal study over the last thirty years.

Paul met his wife Karyn in 1978 and, after their marriage in 1983, collaborated with her to form Sunsilk the following year.

Striving to create beautiful gardens has been a never ending ambition for Paul. His goal is to create peace, beauty and harmony in the garden.

Karyn Schmitt

Karyn has been running the office and the maintenance crew of Sunsilk since 1984. Care of existing gardens as well as design, renovation and planting in those gardens is a life work that remains exciting and fulfilling . A master gardener trained by the NM County Extension Service in the 1990's, she was a founding member of the Santa Fe Water Coalition (1998-2005) . The SFWC is an alliance of Landscape, Architectural and Nursery professionals that has worked closely with the City of Santa Fe to find solutions for drought and opportunities for water conservation. Along with three other members of the SFWC , she received the Santa Fe Botanical Garden Award in 2001 for work and research on water conservation issues.

In 2000, Karyn participated in the Habitat for Humanity's First Ladies Build and Women's Build Program to construct and landscape a residence in Santa Fe.

In 2003-04,,Karyn Schmitt was a member and active participant in the State Engineer's Water Conservation Committee.

Karyn is a current member of the Water Conservation Committee of the City of Santa Fe,an advisory body to the Santa Fe City Council.

"A garden is a living entity,and without care it will not flourish. High altitude, dry conditions, alkaline soils and ultraviolet intensity help make Santa Fe a challenging environment for plants. Dedicated care and applied knowledge are essential to maintaining a beautiful and water conservative garden."

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