Garden Photo of the Day

A Photo Journey Through the Seasons of 2022

Highlights from Bonnie

tiny yellow tree growing in a container

Greetings from a North Georgia Zone 7 garden. I’m Bonnie Plikaytis. After looking through my 2022 garden photos, I selected a few to share. Hope you enjoy them!

close up of yellow and white flowerEdgeworthia chrysantha (Zones 7–10), commonly known as paperbush, blooms from late February to early April before its new leaves emerge. The creamy white-and-yellow fragrant flowers are a welcome sight when most of the garden is still dormant.

small tree starting to bloom with pink flowers in springAs winter turns to spring, the garden awakens from its slumber. This weeping redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Traveller’, Zones 6–9) echoes the color of the blossoms of the ‘Radiance’ rhododendrons (Zones 6a–9b).

small shrub with pink flowers with chartreuse grass behindIn April the flowers of Rhododendron ‘Temple Bells’ (Zones 5a –7) have the shape of pink bells—hence the name. Variegated sweet flag (Acorus gramineus ‘Ogon’, Zones 5–10) provides a backdrop of a grassy golden river through the garden boulders.

close up of small plant with tiny pink flowersThe mid-April morning light intensifies the colors of Saxifraga × geum ‘Dentata’ and highlights its delicate blooms (Zones 6–9).

small evergreen shrub with pink flowersA new addition to the garden in 2021 was Illicium floridanum ‘Swamp Hobbit’ (Zones 6–9). It is a low-growing, deer resistant evergreen shrub with lovely red blooms in the spring. This shrub first came to my attention while reading Fine Gardening issue 202. It can be difficult to find in the nursery trade, but I was fortunate to purchase it at the Atlanta Botanical Garden‘s 2021 fall sale.

ferns with a plant that has red-tipped leavesLooking at our garden, it becomes obvious that I am drawn to plants with red accents. Fine Gardening issue 193 sent me on a search for Crimson Fans mukdenia (Mukdenia rossii ‘Karasuba’, Zones 4–8). It took a while, so when I found it at a local nursery last year, I immediately bought three plants. It has not disappointed! The leaves emerge bright green, then develop stunning red edges that last through summer. In this photo it is paired with tassel fern (Polystichum polyblepharum, Zones 6–8).

tiny yellow tree growing in a containerSpring and fall plant sales are wonderful places to find specimen plants. This fall at a Master Gardeners expo I found a ‘Gnome’ dwarf ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba ‘Gnome’, Zones 4–8). Ginkgo is an ancient deciduous conifer and is sometimes called the maidenhair tree due to its unique fan-shaped leaves that resemble a maidenhair fern frond. The intense golden-yellow fall leaf color was dazzling this year.

A wonderful thing about living in a woodland community is the rich diversity of native trees and plants. This photo taken in November captures the intense fall colors of the Japanese maples (Acer palmatum, Zones 5–9) nestled with a large maple native to our property.

forest scene in fall cast in a pink lightSometimes nature provides dramatic lighting for the forest. The gorgeous pink hue seen in this fall photo only lasted for an instant as the rising sun’s light bounced off the clouds on the horizon.

dog in the gardenIn December the Rohdea japonica (Zones 6–10) an evergreen, deer-resistant, shade-loving plant, adds a bit of Christmas cheer to the garden with its bright red berries.

My canine gardening companion, Cody, and I wish you many moments of peace in your garden during 2023.


Have a garden you’d like to share?

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  1. User avater
    simplesue 12/20/2022

    I've learned about so many new plants from you! I love those Rohdea Japonica, and never-ever heard of them before- and love that they are shade loving and would be evergreen in my zone 6b garden- I must get some in spring!
    I see you have Selaginella growing happily in with those gorgeous Christmas Fans- both are amazing!
    Always so nice to have a garden companion such a your adorable dog!
    I've seen an amazing pink phenomenon happen with the sunset in my garden just this summer- as you've show in your photo- it is an amazing thing to see and almost unbelievable to capture in a photo!

    1. user-7583935 12/20/2022

      So glad you enjoyed the post. The Rohdea are one of my favorite plants. This fall Big Canoe did not have a good crop of acorns. The deer are hungry and sampling many plants rarely browsed. So far they have not touched the Rohdea.

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 12/20/2022

    I adore all of it but I truly love the Saxifraga.

    1. User avater
      treasuresmom 12/20/2022

      BTW, are you on Instagram?

      1. user-7583935 12/20/2022

        No I am not on instagram.

  3. btucker9675 12/20/2022

    Everything is just lovely and I'm going to search out the dwarf ginkgo. Cody is a perfect garden accent!

  4. jos29803 12/20/2022

    Love your plants. I'm always on the hunt for unique, colorful, evergreen plants for my yard. You given me some ideas and I will be on the hunt. Thank you and Happy Holidays!!

  5. User avater
    vanhatalosuomi 12/22/2022

    Thanks for sharing your garden. Little Cody and the scarf are adorable!

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