Garden Photo of the Day

A Warm-Climate Gardener Visits the North

Teresa enjoys a New England garden

garden fence with gate covered in rambling rose

Today’s photos are from Teresa Watkins.

Living in tropical gardening Zone 9b, I’m always excited to visit my husband’s family in Taunton, Massachusetts, to envy their Zone 6b gardens. This year’s weeklong family gathering celebrated the 18-month, pandemic-delayed wedding of niece Kelly with multiple outings.

My sister-in-law, Jackie, and her husband, Craig Machamer, have been working on their garden in Berkley for over 25 years. Inspired by Jackie’s mother-in-law, Ruth, who lived with them, Jackie and Craig learned how to plant seeds and transplant shrubs. Ruth (who passed away recently) was the ultimate green-thumb home gardener. Jackie and Craig have created a beautiful forested acre-and-a-half landscape that has been certified as a wildlife habitat. Included in their yard are a seasonal perennial border, container gardens, deciduous trees, bird feeders, a firepit, a compost pile, rain barrels, and more. A backyard fence-hugging, rambling rose that belonged to Jackie’s father was gorgeous and in full bloom, even after being transplanted from three different homes.

Fauna who didn’t mind attending this afternoon’s bird-feeder picnic were cardinals, catbirds, chipmunks, titmice, wrens, and turkeys.

One of my highlights was the unfortunate opportunity to see the devastating beech blight disease that has reached Massachusetts and affected three of Craig’s trees. Sadly, the beech trees will have to be removed.

garden fence with gate covered in rambling roseThis huge rambling rose that is loaded with blooms covers the fence. Ramblers are a group of climbing roses that can get very large, with a wonderful display of large clusters of small flowers in early summer.

Wild turkeys in a gardenWild turkeys paying a visit to the bird feeders.

pollinator houseSome of the holes to the bottom right of this little pollinator house have been plugged with mud, showing that the next generation of pollinators is developing.

meadowy perennial borderA meadowy perennial border

small compost pileNot as glamorous as other parts of the garden, but important: the compost pile!

red bee balmBrilliant red blooms of bee balm (Monarda didyma, Zones 4–9)

backyard garden with golf holeThis yard has an unusual feature—you can play a few holes of golf here!

pink impatiensA burst of color from impatiens (Impatiens walleriana, annual)

old watering as a flower vase in the gardenAn old watering can makes a rustic container for a small bouquet in the garden.

bright annuals in a contiainerA mix of bright annuals brings a pop of color.


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View Comments


  1. Rebeccazone7 07/27/2021

    Love the rambler against that fence, will be my next foray into roses. They like me a little better than clematis, but not much better. Also makes me sad that my wild turkeys have chosen another path with all the construction around here. Great pictures thanks.

  2. gardendevas 07/27/2021

    The rambler is gorgeous! That fence is a great support for it. And how fun to see the turkeys! We used to have them visit when we lived in the country, and miss them.

  3. btucker9675 07/27/2021

    Very pretty garden! In my neighborhood in northern NJ, we had a large flock of wild turkeys and enjoyed them except during early spring when the toms started getting aggressive - they would stop traffic by attacking cars. Pretty impressive to see a tom in fully display looking in your car window clearly seeing you as a threat to his hens! : )

  4. User avater
    simplesue 07/27/2021

    I really enjoyed seeing this pretty garden with the happy turkeys eating!

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