Gardening is a combination of art, science and love. Jennifer Slossberg, founder of Garden Angels, has blended the three into an organic landscaping company that turns gardens into aesthetic marvels with a delicate ecological footprint.

Ms. Slossberg, a Connecticut native with family connections to Martha’s Vineyard, studied art at San Francisco State University. During summers she worked a variety of jobs on the Island, from catering to innkeeping. In the midst of the work shuffle she connected with Elizabeth Luce, an elderly Island resident who hired Ms. Slossberg to help with gardening. Ms. Slossberg calls Ms. Luce, now 95, an important mentor.

“I learned basic organic fundamentals and all the seasonal tasks from her,” Ms. Slossberg says. “She’s such a straight-up Yankee. I learned how to use household items in the garden, recycle composting, mix fertilizer from scratch, limb trees, all the basic good fundamentals of taking care of your yard and using what you grow.”

Ms. Luce taught Ms. Slossberg a recycling mentality, with rubber bands, old nylons and salad dressing jars becoming tools for storing seeds and staking plants.

“She did things that were practical and fundamentally not wasteful,” Ms. Slossberg says.

Ms. Slossberg also spent two years working for Peggy Schweir, a gardener who specializes in high-end gardens. The balance of Yankee thrift and high-budget projects helped shape her sensibilities.

“From there, my own sense of design and curiosity took off,” she says.

After working on Ms. Schweir’s crew, Ms. Slossberg felt ready to branch off and develop her own business. Her background in ceramics and photography informed her visual sense of landscape design.

“I consider it like sculpture,” she says. “I can combine the height and texture of sculpting, yet get color and fragrance. The garden becomes your palette.”

When working with Garden Angels’ clients, Ms. Slossberg factors in budgets, timeframes and function. The customer who visits the Island in August will enjoy different plants than the year-round client who’s present for the spring-to-fall transition. If a family does a lot of grilling, fresh herbs might be planted near the barbecue to flavor the meals. Different areas of the home (hot tubs, porches, decks, outdoor showers) benefit from different foliage. A well-travelled area will feature hardy plants, whereas more delicate plantings will be set apart from footpaths.

“I’ve been given the opportunity to do some construction projects from the beginning, where I’ve been able to plan the walkways, driveways, and patios,” she says. “What you see from inside the home and what you experience as you move from point A to point B is important.”

To further her knowledge of design, Ms. Slossberg took several courses at Radcliffe College in architectural planning and drafting design. The knowledge has helped her coordinate more effectively with masons, irrigation technicians, carpenters and lawn workers.

During a typical season her staff fluctuates between four and twelve employees. She praises foremen Grace Clark and Carol (Charlotte) Nagi, master organic gardener Teri Praskach, and employee Shannon Rynd-Ray.

“I’m grateful to have those strong women who have amazing artistic backgrounds themselves,” she says. “Their work has made clients feel comfortable and given us an acceleration of the business in the past few years.”

Garden Angels’ decision to use organic materials is a matter of practicality and principle. There is a wealth of organic material on the Island — from seaweed and manure to chicken compost — while overuse of chemicals and lawn fertilizers pollutes the ponds and waterways. Ms. Slossberg has recently collaborated with Jamie Wasserloos, owner of Water Grove Corps. The new firm specializes in organic lawn care, irrigation and tree work that lessens the impact on the Island’s environment.

“We’re surrounded by water, and we have so many septic systems close to these ponds,” Ms. Slossberg says. “When you see a lawn that’s bright green in the middle of a drought, you’ve got to wonder what’s more important: drinking water or a lawn.”

She describes ideal gardens as ones where people can walk barefoot, pets can mingle with the plants, and children can pick berries from bushes without worry.

“It’s not about instant gratification,” she says. “We have a responsibility to keep this place healthy.”