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Garden Photo of the Day

Twists & Turns in Life Shape One Splendid Garden

By Kim Charles

When a career and longing for gardening come together, Gloria Suvanto has the opportunity to create some inspiring outdoor rooms!

"My name is Gloria and I'm also from Alberta! I have always loved gardening but never got serious due to my job, which was long haul truck driver! Driving to Miami every week and visiting garden centres and just seeing all that foilage made me long for a nice place at home! Unfortunately, our winters didn't allow certain varieties, I was able to create some amazing gardens, based on our zone of 3/4! A serious illness then caused me to give up working. It took some time, but I was able to create some amazing "rooms" in my yard! Three years later, working part time at various jobs, I have created some amazing spaces!"

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  1. frankgreenhalgh 09/20/2016

    Hello there Gloria - What a wonderful story of how you turned adversity into the creation of such a lovely environment, which I'm sure assisted in your recovery. You obviously have a natural talent for gardening based on the amazing 'rooms' you have developed. Keep up the absolutely great work.

    Do you still drive that feature truck in your yard? Cheers, Frank

  2. user-7007498 09/20/2016

    Hi Gloria. Thanks for sharing your story. Sorry to hear about your injury, but it created an opportunity to tap into your desire to create a beautiful garden. Gardening also has tremendous health benefits and healing properties.

    Your delphiniums are beautiful. I can not grow them with the summer heat and dryness here in Pennsylvania. The border outside of the patio is so inviting. I love purple.
    Glad to see you have planted alliums. They are so underused, but are such an awesome bulb, taking up so little space and give the garden a great vertical accent.

    You have some serious raised beds in the last photo. Is the truck now a garden ornament?

  3. User avater
    treasuresmom 09/20/2016

    You have really done a wonderful job in your garden. Beautiful!

  4. Sheila_Schultz 09/20/2016

    Good morning Gloria! Looking out the window must be the first thing you do when you get up during the growing season! Your garden beds are filled to the brim with with gorgeous foliage and colorful blooms... and those delphinium's are on steroids! Absolutely beautiful. PS I love your wavy trellis!

  5. NCYarden 09/20/2016

    Wonderful development of your garden rooms, Gloria. It may have been quite a 'long haul' getting here, but it seems you have reached a beautiful destination. Glad to hear you persevered and hopefully enjoying your time in the garden. I too love delphiniums...not the best plant for my area, but every so often I still don my "sucker" cap when I spy one in the garden center and tuck one in the garden, knowing I will only get a brief moment of joy. Thanks for sharing.

  6. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 09/20/2016

    Wow, you've surmounted a lot of obstacles to wind up with this great garden. Really a testament to your character. Looks great. I really love the wavy trellis and the border backed by the low growing limbs of the spruce (pine?).

  7. User avater
    Linda on Whidbey 09/20/2016

    Congratulations Gloria on creating such a beautiful place in which to do your healing. Your delphiniums must be your pride and joy. Like others here, I occasionally weaken and give them another try since I love their intensely blue hues but they don't return my love. Thanks for sharing. You've definitely found a way to make the most out of your zone 3/4.

  8. user-7008248 09/20/2016

    Love it! You inspire me to try more with my Montana garden!

  9. user-3565112 09/20/2016

    Gloria, Every room in your garden is beautifully planned , executed, & maintained.. Blue in the garden is my favorite & you've nailed it. " All my hurts,my garden spade can heal" Ralph Waldo Emerson. Your story is inspiring & confirms that quote. Terrific work, good luck, Joe
    P.S. I love the title of your post.

    1. frankgreenhalgh 09/20/2016

      Thanks Joe for bringing Emerson's relevant quote to our attention. Cheers

      1. user-3565112 09/21/2016

        Good to hear from you Frank & I am glad you liked the quote. It's from Words to Garden By written by Kathryn Augustine I hope you have a ripper of a spring & summer, Good luck, Joe

        1. frankgreenhalgh 09/21/2016

          Goodonya Joe - glad you have picked up some Aussie lingo. Yes I'm looking forward to some warmer weather and longer days (we have daylight saving down here i.e. put clocks forward 1 hour during late spring through to early autumn/fall). Cheers, Frank

          1. user-3565112 09/21/2016

            Frank, You used ripper to describe my son's wedding party in June & it stuck with me. We have daylight savings time also. Ben Franklin suggested it in 1760 or so complete with crop yield increase projections. A little ahead of his times I reckon.

          2. frankgreenhalgh 09/21/2016

            Definitely ahead of his time Joe. The increased crop yield projections have me stumped though - was he really saying that there would be extra light for crop growth??????

          3. user-3565112 09/21/2016

            No Frank, I believe he was suggesting that the farmers got up early and it would be light an hour earlier& they would start work an hour earlier. Quit time did'nt change apparently & one less hour in the heat. My mother in law was
            born a sharecropper in s.w. Georgia & she hated daylight savings time her whole life. Her father hired her & her siblings out for 25 cents per day in the 30's & 40's chopping cotton. Ben Franklin never explained his reasoning but my mother in law lived it until she was 16.

          4. frankgreenhalgh 09/21/2016

            Fascinating stuff Joe. A human productivity issue - nothing to do with plant productivity! Smart chap that Franklin, but gee bloody (can I say that?) hard yakka for your mother-in-law and many, many others. Thanks for the history lesson, mate. Much appreciated.

    2. wGardens 09/21/2016

      Great quote to include, Joe!

      1. user-3565112 09/21/2016

        You're welcome Margaret, The book contains 173 quotes from a wide assortment of people & is available on Kindle for 2.99. I don't know if it's available in the library.
        I like to refer to it now & then to remind me why I garden. Good luck,Joe

  10. User avater
    meander1 (Michaele ) 09/20/2016

    I'm sure you had many a flower filled reverie during some of of those long road trips (ha, always being a careful and conscientiously safe driver) and, now, circumstances have allowed you to literally put down roots for some of those imaginings. And, to be honest, your delphiniums look like a daydream come true...they are positively glorious.

  11. user-7008244 09/20/2016

    Love the blue in your garden, nice job! -B

  12. wGardens 09/21/2016

    Fabulous job! Gardening is wonderful therapy, isn't it! So many things to see.... and what a unique trellis. Love those delphiniums.... gorgeous!

  13. user-7008249 09/21/2016

    You may not be driving Long Haul stints at this time & although you shared other more colorful and both visually & spiritually inspiring photos ...my favourite has to be your cab perched overlooking your fence-line and raised beds.
    It is so befitting in the irony that the career & lifestyle that kept you from expressing your once unrequited passion, is the very link that ...laid aside for now... freed you to do so!

    Don't be shy. Post more photos!

    I pray God''s healing into your body & spirit.

    Another Gardening Chum!
    ...Carli in Atlanta

  14. Schatzi 09/29/2016

    Fabulous! Especially the delphiniums, but it is all beautiful. I grow delphiniums in a half-barrel on my deck to protect them from voracious slugs. Love the wavy trellis - might have to copy that!

    1. user-6536305 10/07/2016

      Encore with you! Love the wavy trellis - might have to copy that!

  15. user-6536305 10/07/2016

    What a fabulous zone 3 and 4 garden! It is so beautiful as "our winters didn't allow certain varieties". Imaging if it allows you for more varieties." Great work and hope this speeds up your healing. What is the little purple flower plant in the front of the cover photo please.

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