Garden Photo of the Day

A Botanist’s Garden

A trained plant taxonomist fills her garden with unusual treasures

Today’s photos come from Miranda Sipe, who gardens in Frome in the United Kingdom.

I’ve been gardening in Frome for 28 years now. As a botanist by training (and even worse, a plant taxonomist), I have to fight the temptation to squeeze in one of everything, resulting in unplanned chaos.

Recently, I’ve been planting more for autumn, my favorite season; more michaelmas daisies (asters), Euonymus ‘Coral Charm’, aralias and aconites (monkshoods). The photos here are from early September.

My garden is sheltered by several trees, so there’s not too much full sun, but the soil is brilliant, having been cultivated by a long succession of gardeners. I don’t dig, except for new planting, and I mulch twice a year with mushroom compost or farmyard manure mixes.

The photos probably don’t show enough of the garden for your purposes, but I’ve enjoyed looking through the progress made over my time here, especially as I’m renovating and replanting, following an unauthorized (and unsupervised!) commando raid earlier this year by next door’s scaffolding team. I’m using the resulting devastation as an opportunity for garden development!

This Wisteria floribunda ‘Violacea Plena’ (Japanese wisteria, Zones 4–9) has quietly grown 30 feet up the birches behind the pergola, unnoticed until this year! With it is yellow Alexanders (Smyrnium olustratum, Zones 7–10). Umbellifers (the carrot family) are a favorite plant family of mine, and I’m slowly filling up the garden with as many different species as I can find. These photos are from last spring.


Thalictrum delavayi (Chinese meadow rue, Zones 4–7), Thalictrum lucidum (Shining meadow rue, Zones 5–9), and Macleaya ‘Coral Charm’ (plume poppy, Zones 3–8).


Late summer/early autumn in the garden with the red flowers of Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ (Lucifer crocosmia, Zones 6–9) and yellow blooms of Inula helenium (elecampane, Zones 3–7).


Another view of the same planting.


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View Comments


  1. User avater
    JohnALuter 11/06/2018

    Nice plant

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 11/06/2018

    Love your meadow rue.

  3. Chris_N 11/06/2018

    All very lovely, and you're right, we want more photos!

  4. User avater
    meander_michaele 11/06/2018

    You certainly have some delightful plant groupings and combinations. I really enjoyed your pictures.I've never heard of the Macleaya ‘Coral Charm’'s looks very charming.

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