Garden Photo of the Day

A Clean Slate Before and After Story


Who doesn't love a good before and after!? Patty Eckles from Hollywood, South Carolina has a great story to show!

"We bought our home in Charleston, SC in 2007. The back yard was a clean slate. Nothing was planted there. Coming from Maryland, where I had the most gorgeous gardens, I started to plant at our new home. Planting in the south is so different I found. I loved my beautiful flower beds I had up north, but down south, they just don’t flower as well. It's way too hot in the summer for them. They don’t spread or last long, so I had the most fun finding what to plant here. And, wow things grow fast. I can't believe it's only been 8 years and my land is filled! I have nowhere else to plant anything, or do I?"

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2007 – It started out as a clean slate

2015 – Corner of lot

2008 – corner lot before

View Comments


  1. user-7007498 02/01/2016

    Patty: Love the before and after photos. Amazing how you transformed a barren wasteland of burned out grass into a beautiful landscape that is also invites nature in. Wow-8 years. Took me almost 20 years to get my garden to fill in (I also started with a blank slate).

  2. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/01/2016

    Wonderful transformation, Patty. I could stand to see a whole lot more pictures of "the after"! Seems like you embraced your growing zone by including plants that definitely give off a tropical vibe like the grouping of what appear to be palm trees. I love your hardscape additions...nothing like a white arbor to beckon a garden visitor to walk a little further.

  3. diane_lasauce 02/01/2016

    Patty, all your neighbors must be delighted to have you as a neighbor!!! Are mosquitoes a huge bother in SC? I learned that Beaufort must have aerial spraying!!!
    Thanks for sharing! Bet you are glad to have missed the big East coast snowstorm last week.

  4. wGardens 02/01/2016

    WOW! Who would guess it was only 8 years! Great job! What are some of your favorite plants?

  5. Quiltingmamma 02/01/2016

    Another WOW! I can hardly get past the installed palm trees. What a difference trees make. I have to keep going back to see what you have planted underneath them. Just a wonderful job and beautiful garden. Well, not that I have gone back to look, there must have been some trees other than that one evergreen, as I can see what look like conifer trunks in the last picture. Maybe you would enlighten us.

  6. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/01/2016

    I love a good transformation story. You've obviously succeed in transitioning to the much warmer climate!

  7. greengenes 02/01/2016

    Thanks for the before and after photos, Patty! What a difference and iam sure it was a whole lot of fun starting off with a clean slate! Thats one of my dreams. But you pulled it off with such beauty! So would enjoy seeing more!

  8. annek 02/01/2016

    Wow! It's a green and vibrant oasis. I had to blink twice to assure it wasn't a mirage. A beautiful way to increase the charm factor. What did you plant beneath the palms?

  9. user-4691082 02/01/2016

    Patty, how beautiful! I would give my right arm to see a palm tree! Did you have those brought in that size or did you grow them from seed? Lol, just kidding! Thanks for the gorgeous photos!

  10. User avater
    LindaonWhidbey 02/02/2016

    Patty, your garden transformation certainly looks successful. It must seem so much cooler to you in the summer to look out at all of that green. I'll look forward to more photos of your beautiful yard.

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