Garden Photo of the Day

A Labor of Love

One gardener’s creation

Today’s photos are from Carla Zambelli Mudry.

Welcome to some scenes from my garden. My current garden is my wonderland. Except for tree work and the planting of a willow tree in the front, this is my labor of love. I am a crazy gardener, I am the first to admit. I plant, I weed, I mulch, I find ways to add more plants, and sometimes I just sit and look at what I created because it brings me and everyone who visits pleasure.

This particular garden is inspired by many gardeners and garden writers, starting with the late Suzy Bales, who gifted me a couple of her books after I had emailed her one time to say thank you for her wonderful book Suzy Bales’ Down-to-Earth Gardener. Through her books I learned about the beauty of a four-season garden.

I have also been inspired by folks such as the BBC’s Monty Don, Gene Bush, David L. Culp (author of The Layered Garden) and Jenny Rose Carey (author of Glorious Shade and senior director of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s Meadowbrook Farm).

I started this garden as a breast cancer survivor, and it also has pieces of every garden I have ever had since I was a child, with inspiration from other gardens and gardeners.

I love my plants and all the critters and songbirds who also share my garden with me. I also mix in vintage and antique garden furniture, statuary, sculpture, signage, and other elements. My garden is on all four sides of the house, and it melds into the woods. It was a feral overgrown weed patch when I moved in, and every year I do a bit more.

A view of the garden, lush and full of beautiful plants.


Rose ‘Winchester Cathedral’, a variety created by famous rose breeder David Austin. View more gorgeous roses by David Austin here.


A beautiful white-flowered baptisia (Baptisia sp. Zones 4–9).


Details make a garden! Different sizes of gravel make edging next to an oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia, Zones 5–9).

Small hostas growing in an ornate planter.


A single rose hanging perfectly in front of Baptisia ‘Twilite Prarieblues’ (Baptisia × variicolor ‘Twilite Prairieblues’, Zones 4–8).


Brilliant daylilies (Hemerocallis sp., Zones 4–9) backed by purple bigleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla, Zones 6–9).


A mermaid sculpture invites you to sit down, join her, and enjoy the garden.



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. Maggieat11 07/04/2018

    Good Morning, I enjoyed your story and your garden. My favorite photo was the one that included your mermaid sculpture. Please send in more photos! :-)

  2. garden1953 07/04/2018

    Beautiful gardens and an inspiration!

  3. User avater
    meander_michaele 07/04/2018

    You certainly have a lovely garden, Carla, and it's obvious that you love it and it loves you back. I'm captivated by your different varieties of baptisia...I have a common blue one but the white and yellow have to be delightful to see in full flower. All your objects of ornamentation give your garden real personality. Was that a little dachshund statue under the ornate white planter? It's always fun to have extra surprises tucked away.

  4. mjensen 07/04/2018


  5. btucker9675 07/04/2018

    What a perfectly lovely garden - I love how the gravel edging next to the oakleaf hydrangea looks like a stream. No wonder the little mermaid doesn't mind being out of her element!

  6. user-7017435 07/04/2018

    Good afternoon, Thank you for your beautiful photos. Your garden bench is very similar to one in my late friends garden. When helping his wife clean gardens this spring I we uncovered a small cast bronze elephant/ sprinkler & & I think it will look terrific on the bench. Thank you for the idea & good luck, Joe

  7. [email protected] 07/04/2018

    Thanks for sharing your garden. Very inspiring. Where do you garden?
    Note to administrator: really miss seeing all the feedback-and-forth , and answers to questions others may ask.

  8. paiya 07/04/2018

    Carla, your garden is beautiful and tranquil. I am trying to convince my husband ( the hard worker in our garden) to make a gravel path like yours- it is so artistically-balanced yet practical. Thank you

  9. carolineyoungwilliams 07/09/2018

    Carla, your garden is absolutely beautiful. It is as if it is expressing ones take on life. I enjoyed the perfectly placed surprises, different pathways of unexpected elements and the colorfull combinations of plants. I love the Baptisia and Rose. Thanks for sharing a piece of you and your beautiful haven.

Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Related Articles

The Latest