Today’s photos come from Randy Potter in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
My wife and I love gardening. In the spring and summer we work in the garden almost every day. Rosalyn is involved in trading and collecting seeds. Then when it’s time, she starts hundreds of seedlings.
This is our climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea petiolaris, Zones 4–7). It covers the whole 12-foot-long side of the shed and has now come around the front of the shed. We have to keep it trimmed away from covering the sliding doors.
Five years ago, Rosalyn and I built a 12-foot by 12-foot lotus (Nelumbo nucifera, Zones 4–8) pond. This is the first time that we harvested lotus tubers. After replanting many of them in the pond containers, we planted leftovers in ten separate pots. We also gave many of them to friends to pot up. Also, this is the first year that we have deadheaded the lotus seedpods. We are having a record number of blooms. We have had 72 blooms so far, and the pond is full of buds.
From the deck you can see the gates to the lotus pond. On the flagstone firepit area are two potted lotus plants. In the foreground are hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata, Zones 3–8) and bonariensis verbena (Verbena bonariensis, Zones 6–9 or as an annual). We garden every day if possible. We do everything ourselves, including patios, stonework, and structures.
We extended our Asian theme to the front yard with begonias, tall miscanthus grass (Miscanthus sinensis, Zones 5–9), a small elderberry (Sambucus sp.), and a seven-son tree (Heptacodium miconioides, Zones 5–9).
A few years ago, a friend gave me a pedestal sink. I hooked up hot and cold quick disconnect hoses from the basement. We keep a bar of soap in a plastic case on the sink. If our hands are covered with soil, we can wash off before going back into the house. When we have a party, we close the sink’s stopper and then fill the sink with ice, beer, and wine. Around the sink is a ‘Ballerina’ rose, a Persicaria amplexicaulis ‘Firetail’ (Zones 4–7) and an ‘Alice DuPont’ Mandevilla.
This 24-foot trellis is made of PVC pipe and electrical PVC pipe. When we have guests over, we hang colorful umbrellas from it.
The trellis makes a more elegant entry to the backyard and the garden.
This photo shows the waterfall in our koi pond, although we turned off the waterfall for this photo so that we could get a serene and still water scene. The pond is roughly 16 feet by 20 feet, and it supports water lilies, lotus, and about 40 koi fish.
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