Garden Photo of the Day

A Garden as Pretty as a Painting

A romantic cottage garden looks like a work of art

Today’s photos come from Andrea McCollum of Hamilton, Ohio.

We are two senior gardeners who met online about 15 years ago. My romantic partner wanted to create, through gardening, a painted picture that you could walk through. I think he achieved that goal! This is the walkway from both sides. We are both 72 and will continue working the gardens as long as we are able.

“A painted picture you can walk through,” indeed! The abundance of flowers and the informal design scheme give this space a casual, cottage-garden feel.

The same view, but at dusk. I love the glowing stained-glass inserts! I’ve never seen a garden light quite like that, and the effect is really beautiful.

Lots of colors burst forth from annuals everywhere. Putting some plants in containers set in the garden beds is a great way to get height and diversity in a planting.

A relaxed brick path lined with rocks leads you through the bright plantings and invites slow exploration.

The huge flower heads of smooth hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens, Zones 3–9) catch the light. Dawn and dusk are sometimes the best times in the garden, as the low light can be magical.

Using lots of annuals such as marigolds (Tagetes erecta) and petunias (Petunia × hybrida) is a great way to ensure that there is lots of color in the garden all summer long.

This watering can pours crystals instead of water.

Japanese fiber banana (Musa basjoo) can be overwintered successfully as far north as Zone 5, though it appreciates a thick layer of protective mulch during the winter in the coldest gardens. It is a great way to bring an unexpected tropical flair to cold-climate gardens.

And one final view of this lush cottage garden that is, indeed, as beautiful as a painting.


Have a garden you’d like to share?

Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!

To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.

If you want to send photos in separate emails to the GPOD email box that is just fine.

Have a mobile phone? Tag your photos on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with #FineGardening!

You don’t have to be a professional garden photographer – check out our garden photography tips!

Do you receive the GPOD by email yet? Sign up here.

View Comments


  1. avongardener 09/20/2019

    Senior gardeners creating such a beautiful garden is just amazing! You deserve all the credit for the hard work and dedication in maintaining your garden. Thanks for sharing.

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 09/20/2019

    You two are an inspiration. Love your extensive use of containers. I am sure it makes your gardening just a little easier.

  3. cheryl_c 09/20/2019

    What a beautiful garden! Your colors are rich and vibrant, and your hardscaping just begs us to come and discover some unexpected treasures. A job well started - gardening is never completed, as you already know. Congratulations on creating such a masterpiece!

  4. Meelianthus 09/20/2019

    What a fun garden, so charming and absolutely beautiful !

  5. User avater
    simplesue 09/20/2019

    How nice that your love of gardening brought you both together in your love story. You have most defiantly reached your goal of creating a garden painting that you can walk through- I totally get that feeling when I look at these photos. I'm 62 and I hope I'm still gardening at 72 as you both are. You are both an inspiration!

  6. [email protected] 09/20/2019

    I will be 72 in December, and could use a little more energy, but your garden really provides a lot is inspiration- maybe I will go out there now!! (Everything is pretty wet, but I think the rain is taking a break this afternoon). Keep up the great work, and thanks for sharing.

  7. carolineyoungwilliams 09/25/2019

    Andrea, you and your partner have created an amazing flower garden. It is like a beautiful picture put on display. I love your choice of colors as well as the many structure pieces. They all come together like a beautiful Art piece. Thank you so much for sharing. May God continue to bless you to create beauty in this world.

  8. User avater
    RonaldTague 10/08/2019


Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Related Articles

The Latest