Garden Photo of the Day

A video tour through Anne’s Delaware garden

Special treat today! Anne Engelking Wellman in Newark, Delaware, sent in a video of her garden!

She says, “I filmed our very casual cottage-style garden all abloom and added a musical background but also caught the birdies tweeting at the same time. Once we fenced out the herds of deer, we could actually grow just about any flower we wanted, except delphiniums which sadly don’t like our heat. It also briefly shows the garden through different seasons.

It has two hand-dug ponds with a bridge built by my husband. It took me a month of shoveling to dig the larger pond which our daughter said gave me admirable Arnold-Schwarzenegger-style back muscles. We placed the garden for easy viewing from the dining room window and a glassed-in porch. My first visit every day is to check out the pond since it attracts all kinds of wildlife we never saw before it was added: foxes, hawks that carry off frogs, great blue herons, barred owls, etc.

There is a fenced vegetable garden that gets attacked routinely by wiley groundhogs but produces enough tomatoes and greens for my husband and me besides some figs and berries, tons of winter squash I give away, and flowers in amongst everything. My goal is lots of colors clashing. Last year I tried dahlias for the first time; 2014 is the year to put all tall flowers towards the back and better mulching to keep out weeds!”

How great is this, Anne? I had so much fun watching this–the birds chirping, the butterflies fluttering, and the flowers waving in the breeze… Your garden is charming, and your grandchildren incredibly talented! Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing this with us.

It’s almost SPRING, people! I know you’re going through your photos from last year, planning what you’ll do differently this year. Send some of those photos in to me! [email protected]

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View Comments


  1. GardeningRocks 03/11/2014

    That was awesome Anne! You have lovely gardens and beautiful pollinators. I especially like to see wildlife in the gardens. Gardening is for the birds, indeed!

  2. bee1nine 03/11/2014

    How most delightful and fun is this, I LOVED IT !!!
    Thank-you, Anne!

  3. deeinde 03/11/2014

    Anne, I LOVE your garden! All of the color is wonderful! I also love gardens that are wildlife friendly (although a deer just came through and ate all the buds on my azaleas GRRR...) I would love to see your garden in person this summer. I have moved to Newark so the flowers that do well for you should do well for me as well.

  4. grannieannie1 03/11/2014

    Thank you for the kind comments, especially considering all my weeds, neglectful dead-heading and leaving the garden hose lying around before filming which hardly qualify as "fine gardening" and almost kept me from sending in the video.

    And To Yardmom in Newark: I'd like to meet a fellow local gardener. Now how to put my email so spammers won't get it... It is my name (as written by Michelle above) with Mrs in front of my name (but don't include my middle name or any spaces) at gmail dot com


  5. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 03/11/2014

    I have to say, those flowers, birds, butterflies and bees are making early March feel so dreary and depressing! :) What a winter it has been! There's always something to look forward to and this is a nice reminder.

  6. User avater
    meander_michaele 03/11/2014

    Ripping open the envelope with excitement..."and the award for most delightful visual garden presentation goes to (drum roll, please) Anne Engelkng!!" What a treat...I loved every chirping second of it. It's a beautifully sumptuous garden and the video was such a special way to share it. Your dahlias looked super...loved the wine red ones with matching colored stems.
    If the narrative hadn't fessed up to weeds, I would never have known. Everything looked like exuberantly lush growth that belonged. Thank you so much for putting this together, Anne. It should have an encore presentation next winter when the snow is piled high.

  7. Mciandella 03/11/2014

    Wow!!!i don't know what to say first!!
    Your grandchildren are amazing! That voice is beautiful! And the piano playing just fantastic. How old are they? You created a beautiful video- thanks for sharing it!
    Your garden is gorgeous! I feel like I actually walked through it--what a great
    Idea to send a video. I make a few videos too, usually of the fish in my pond but I am always talking over it! Lol
    We all have weeds! I feel the need to warn you about That stringy weed in the slide called "Lillie's with weeds". I have experience with that one! BEWARE.

  8. tractor1 03/11/2014

    I'm overwhelmed!

    A Talent King Family Presentation.

    That is one gorgeous cornicopia... I'm speechless.

    Thank you... Applause!

  9. mainer59 03/11/2014

    Fabulous! I wouldn't worry about clashing colors. It is all beautiful! It is so good that I hope it doesn't scare other people away from sending in plain old photographs! Speaking of spam, my GPOD did not come in by email today, but it wasn't in my spam box, either. I accessed it by opening yesteday's post.

  10. wGardens 03/11/2014

    Oh my gosh! What a special treat this was this morning. Loved it. The colors, fullness... birds, butterflies, even music from grandchildren. Just wonderful, ALL of it! Thank you!

  11. WAgardener48 03/11/2014

    The video was such a nice surprise this morning! You have a garden to get blissfully lost in. Thank you for sharing.

  12. User avater
    HelloFromMD 03/11/2014

    Hi Anne,

    Love your use of annuals within the perennial gardens! I saw online somewhere that annuals aren't as popular. I love annuals and plant several flats of them every year for the extra color and food they provide for garden creatures. Your tithonia was awesome and got a lot of visitors. Wish I had more sun! I have found some varieties that will accept part sun. My son played piano and now plays the sax so I imagine him playing during a tour of my garden. Loved the grandkids participation. Do they help in the garden? Wonderful gardens!

  13. Tarrytown 03/11/2014

    So gorgeous! The video really gives a wonderful sense of walking through the space, with the added bonus that you are traveling at several different times of the year. Bravo!

  14. GrammyGranddad 03/11/2014

    What an absolute pleasure!

  15. Sculpturedale 03/11/2014

    I will just have to break down and use a word I never use... AWESOME. The piano accompaniment makes this beyond special. And your inclusion of the wildlife is great. Thanks!

  16. gramamarg 03/11/2014

    Joy!pure joy to see a video of a heavenly garden with the tenderness of grandchildren

  17. gramamarg 03/11/2014

    Joy pure joy. And to have the tenderness of grandchildren!

  18. grdnldy 03/11/2014

    That was so wonderful! You had so many elements - sight and sound and such beauty. Only thing missing was smell, but with everything else, I was able to imagine the fragrance. Thank you for sharing with us -- you've raised the bar!

  19. flowerladydi 03/11/2014

    How absolutely FABULOUS!!!! Every element was soooo well done,, so much fun to watch, so beautiful to listen to and such fabulous color and talent! I can not say enough Anne! Truly truly loved it all!!!
    Thank You!!

  20. GrannyMay 03/11/2014

    What a beautiful, joyous place to share with your children, very talented grandchildren, and the birds, butterflies and other creatures! Thank you for giving us a tour of your wonderful garden, Anne!

  21. kcmom 03/11/2014

    This was SUCH a treat! Thank you!

    Today is my daughter's birthday; I sent her a link to your video as a small birthday present, and an antidote to her bleak, grey morning in Iowa.

    Your eye for color reminds me that talented use of plants gives wonderful results. The plants don't need to be exotics, or expensive. - And thank you for leaving the hose! It would have been almost TOO perfect without some sign of "a real gardener lives here."

  22. janetsfolly 03/11/2014

    Thank you, Anne! This is truly balm for the winter blighted soul. Loved the music, including birdsong and fountain splash, loved the wildlife, loved the gorgeous tumbling of plants and flowers! You have so many lovely butterflies, do you ever see sphinx moths in your phlox? Such a talented family, so much beauty to enjoy! Thanks for sharing your bit of paradise!

  23. satisfaction 03/11/2014

    I can't find words enough to describe this! I feel like I just walked through your beautiful gardens with you. The flowers, music, labeling, birds and butterflies all wonderful. For a while I was able to forget the still heavy, snow cover here. Great talent!

  24. GardenSmiles 03/11/2014

    Grannie Annie, thanks for an amazing video! You have such a wonderful paradise to tend and enjoy with your families. Digging is excellent exercise and keeps muscles on grandmothers like us, but hard work too. We have a permanent garden hose that runs alongside the sidewalk to the garden and blends in well. Your flowers are amazing and so colorful! Would love to stroll through your garden and view everything, it's lovely!

  25. GardenSmiles 03/11/2014

    PS Tell your grandson, Peter, he played the piano beautifully! It was perfect for your garden walk. Just going thru your video again Grannie Annie.

  26. GrannyCC 03/11/2014

    Beautiful and what a wonderful and unique way to share your garden. I love the cottage garden look. You and your family are very talented!!

  27. GardenSmiles 03/11/2014

    PS Your granddaughter Anna's singing was a perfect accompaniment to the video. The garden background sounds are lovely too. Grandchildren are our treasures!

  28. CJgardens 03/11/2014

    I've gone through the video twice but will many more times. It is wonderful in every way. Your grandchildren are incredibly talented. The music choices matched the mood of different parts of the video so well. The birdsong, butterflies, and bubbling water have quadrupled my spring fever. Thanks so much for sharing.
    Carol Jean

  29. John429 03/11/2014

    What a wonderful garden! And your video was so well done I felt like I was right there in your garden. And having your grandchildren provide the music made it even more special :-) Also, thank you for providing such nice labeling of your flowers during the video. There were several kinds I was interested in and your identification was right there for me. I am just so impressed with your beautiful garden and your outstanding video presentation. Thank you so much for sharing - you made my day!

  30. user-7006902 03/11/2014

    Oh my! I need Spring! What a joy to watch and listen to. What a joyful, glorious garden - truly magic. You have made me want to plant a hundred flowers this Spring. Good thing I ordered seeds yesterday - otherwise I would go overboard. Thank you Grannie Annie!

  31. annek 03/11/2014

    My, my, my...oh my! Where to start? Anne, you've added a very special start to the day with such a well done, full of talent, colorful, exuberant, charming garden video. I felt the pull of a smile, then a full fledged grin with sighing and giggles inserted. I nominate you for the gardening oscars. You've added a new level of 'fine' to the Fine Gardening blog. Kudos to you, your Schwartzenegger back muscles, and the super grandkids.

  32. Meelianthus 03/11/2014

    Hello Anne ~ That is possibly one of the most beautiful 'garden tours' I have ever been on. I love the riot of colors and I am very partial to a mixing of any colors. I enjoyed every minute of your fantastic video and I really do think your grandson stole the show - his piano playing is incredible. He must have been playing for a long time, and your granddaughter has a beautiful voice. What terrific accompaniments to your wonderland of flowers. Is it a big piece of property? Do you do all the gardening yourself? And what a treat to have all the wildlife buzzing around you. Thank you for sharing this most mesmerizing garden Anne.

  33. greengenes 03/11/2014

    What else can I say but what all the other readers have said! It was so well done. Music and wine and gardening go together. The red cardinal, absolutely beautiful! Sure wish we had them here. All your paths and flowers just flowed together with the music. What a treat! Thanks so much!

  34. wildthyme 03/11/2014

    I LOVED this! What a difference it makes being able to hear the wind and the rain and the birds in the background of those beautiful photos. It's like you're actually walking through the garden. I have no idea how you did the music and the titles, but I hope if you do another one you will share it with us. Those colors, and the birds and butterflies, really made my day! Thank you so much.

  35. GardenersWK 03/11/2014

    Wow! What a surprise and experience today! Loved the hot colors, the butterflies, the red cardinal, the brick path with the hot magenta coneflower and various phlox! Loved it all! I am inspired!

  36. grannieannie1 03/11/2014

    First thank you for all your kind responses! It was great fun reading them.

    Peter the pianist was 13 or almost 14 when he recorded those (he has played since he was 6), and Anna the singer was 14. We have one or maybe two more coming up in the ranks who might be singers, too, if I can do some arm twisting.

    The back yard is a skewed 60 x 200 feet. A man mows for us, but I'm the gardener. My husband sometimes builds an arbor for me and claims I like to transplant our bushes often to keep them from becoming over-confident. I built the walk-in coldframe out of recycled stuff. The small pond was dug in the shape of a heart by my husband, our sons, and future daughter-in-law before their wedding. I dug the big pond because everyone got sick of digging. We have had sphinx moths (or tomato horn worm moths) which don't make me happy the way the butterflies do. We have milkweed to feed the monarchs.

    Now I eagerly await pictures of your gardens. It is a high point of my day to salivate over them and get new ideas to try out. I have much to learn.


  37. cwheat000 03/12/2014

    Granny annie, I so enjoyed the tour and the music; definitely a mood booster. My little stopped what she was doing and watched when she heard Clair de lune. She said, mommy my favorite, Clair de lune. (Her name is Claire). It was so relaxing. Your garden is a joy and so full of life and love. You have the cottage garden thing down. I love the abundance of color. I think I have the same garden addiction as you. It looks like you have to try a little of everything. Keep doing what you are doing . It is wonderful.

  38. sheila_schultz 03/12/2014

    My 3 year old granddaughter was with me today when I had time to watch and listen to your video, Anne. She was totally enthralled. In the beginning I told her about your grandkids creating the music. She wanted to know if they were a boy or a girl, after that she talked to me about the flowers, the birds and once again the music. Thank you... it was a magical moment.

  39. perenniallycrazy 03/12/2014

    Such a heartwarming treat! Thank you Anne. I look forward to having grandkids in the future, too.

  40. janeeliz 03/13/2014

    Utterly enchanting...all of it! I love your grand-children's involvement. Such a treasure! Thank you!

  41. celiahoneysuckle 03/13/2014

    Well Grannie Annie, It should be on PBS!!!

  42. janeburr 03/14/2014

    fantastic "playground" er I mean garden/yard!! and love the video

  43. foxglove12 03/22/2014

    Love this video. I've watched it over and over. Love the sound of bird and the water fountain is heavenly.

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