Garden Photo of the Day

August Garden in Norwell, Massachusetts

Later summer blooms and foliage

Today we’re visiting with Barbara Cain.

My garden is on the South Shore of Boston. The photos were all taken in my backyard, which is enclosed with a fence to create a courtyard. My husband and I have breakfast and lunch on the deck. I try to have interesting plants growing all year.

Ensete ventricosumA big container with a large Ensete ventricosum (Zones 9–11) anchors this planting. This large plant is a closer relative of bananas and can be overwintered indoors in climates where it gets too cold.

A school of fish bring color and a little fun to this part of the garden.

I love climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea petiolaris, Zones 4–8) and have used it both on my pergola and as a ground cover over a stone wall. The climbing hydrangea on my pergola is quite old and is taking over the structure. Every year I plan to prune it back after it blooms but never seem to get to it! Maybe this year . . .

ScaevolaA big pot full of blooming Scaevola (annual). Native to Australia, this plant makes a great show all summer and is displayed nicely in a pot all by itself.

Even without flowers, diverse foliage on perennials makes a great display.

variegated Japanese forest grassHere’s a high-contrast combination of a dark-leaved Heuchera (Zones 4–9) and variegated Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa macra ‘Aureola’, Zones 5–9).

A selection of succulents, both hardy and not, in homemade hypertufa pots. Hypertufa is a lightweight faux stone that can be easily made at home. (We’ve got full instructions here.)

Shrubs, perennials, and annuals all bring flowers to this corner of the garden, under a huge specimen of cutleaf sumac (Rhus typhina ‘Tiger Eyes’, Zones 4–8).

blue passion flowerThe flower of blue passion flower (Passiflora caerulea, Zones 5–9) look like they should be from the tropics, though this vine is actually native to eastern North America and is incredibly tolerant of cold winters once established.

Looking out from under the climbing hydrangea-covered arbor out into the garden.


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View Comments


  1. Coh9en 09/07/2020

    Amazing info! Nice garden ideas liteblue

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 09/07/2020

    Wow, that sumac is amazing!

  3. nwphillygardener 09/07/2020

    Not sure if it's my browser, but most of the images appear sideways and one even upside down. I hope the GPOD Editors can correct that. This mature garden seems to be lovingly tended with great details. Thanks for sharing it.

  4. wittyone 09/07/2020

    Oh you have done a wonderful job with your garden, everything is just right. I love the sitting area framed by that climbing hydrangea. They take so long to get going it's hard to be patient waiting for some coverage.

    I really like how you have incorporated large pots of plants in among those inground and varying heights underneath larger shrubs. That's something that I am not at all good at so I will have to study your pics to get some ideas.

    Beautiful garden and very well done.

  5. arboretum 09/07/2020

    wow- my tiger eyes will get THAT big?! that's so inspiring, and i know just where i'm going to move mine. when you say the passion flower is z.5 once established. How long was that for you? congrats on all your inspiring successes!

    1. beesknees123 09/16/2020

      I believe that my Passion Vine is an annual tropical one. I winter it over in a dark basement after cutting it back hard. I do know people who have one that winters over and reseeds in her garden.

  6. User avater
    simplesue 09/07/2020

    How picturesque that white pergola with the Climbing Hydrangea is!
    Your entire garden is really pretty and interesting to see!

    That one unusual tall pink flower in the photo captioned "Even without flowers, diverse foliage..." really caught my eye!
    What is it? It's so unusual, or is it garden sculpture??

    1. User avater
      simplesue 09/07/2020

      Oh and ps...those little hand painted fish are really nice!

    2. beesknees123 09/16/2020

      The tall red foliage plant it Eupatorium 'Chocolate' which is just starting to bloom and Plumbago with blue flowers. Some people have told me that the Eupatorium seeds around their gardens but I have not had that problem with 'Chocolate'. Stachys 'Helen von Stein' is the silver plant (non-flowering variety))

  7. btucker9675 09/07/2020

    Love your garden, and especially your school of the ever elusive fence fish! : )

  8. cheryl_c 09/07/2020

    I love your whimsical school of fish and the serenity of the porch with the climbing hydrangea. You have a lovely sense of how to combine plants in interesting ways. I'm wondering about the upright burgundy bush in the photo with the lambs ears in front - is that one of the weigela 'wine' series? It is staying more upright than they usually do.

  9. [email protected] 09/07/2020

    Gosh, I love it all. Some favorites from past gardens that I now want to grow again, and especially would love to duplicate (steal?) the fence fish idea. Did you make them? Purchase them? Thanks so much .

    1. beesknees123 09/16/2020

      The fish were a family project with nieces and nephews and acrylic paint. My husband made the fish. They have been outside on the trellis for years with Schizophragma hydrangeoides vine.

  10. Cenepk10 09/07/2020

    Fab U Lous !!!!!

  11. SufiaArsala01 09/08/2020

    Everywhere looks beautiful because of the greenery, I love this place, Can you send me your garden video on And I'm very interested to hear that there are deer and turkeys on this island, it never happened to me.

  12. jayanwer 07/25/2021

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  13. Alexbryancj 01/09/2022

    Everywhere looks beautiful because of the greenery, I love this place, Can you send me your garden video on And I'm very interested to hear that there are deer and turkeys on this island, it never happened to me.

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