Garden Photo of the Day

Bob’s slope-side garden in Connecticut

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray

Today’s photos are from Bob Murray, who says, “Twelve years ago we outgrew the plantings on our existing property and so decided to start fresh. We bought a 3-acre wooded lot in Glastonbury, Connecticut, selectively cleared it, and then began building our gardens and house.

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray

“Since the property is on a slope we had to terrace it and that led to the creation of a sunken Japanese garden with pools and ponds at the base. The woods in front of the house became a woodland garden filled with exotic shade plants.

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray

“We now have 2 acres of perennials and exotic trees. We take great pleasure in opening our gardens to garden clubs throughout the Northeast. For the last seven years we have also participated in the Garden Conservancy Open Days Program. On September 8 our gardens will be open from 10 to 4 PM as part of their fall Open Days. We invite all of your readers in the area to come by. For directions go to”

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray

So green, restful, and serene, Bob! I think we need LOTS more photos…… Gorgeous!

This is prime time to take some photos in your garden. So get out there with your cameras and send some in! Email them to [email protected].

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Bob Murray


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View Comments


  1. user-1020932 08/20/2013

    absolutely beautiful, Bob. full of happy plants and is that a weeping larch i spy? and nary a nibble on any of the hostas what few i have here now look like doilies. beautiful garden and LOTS of work for 12 years

  2. Deanneart 08/20/2013

    Lovely! great use of the space

  3. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 08/20/2013

    Quite an elegant garden. I can't imagine starting from scratch again. Amazing job!

  4. flowerladydi 08/20/2013

    Bob,,,,, it is ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS!!!!!! Your yard is the epitome of shade gardens and fabulous fabulous trees! Love the larch,, Virdis Japanese Maple,, weeping spruce,,, love it , love it, love it!!!! If I EVER get to Connecticut,,, I am for sure coming to your house!!! So peaceful,,,,what I would give to have property like your to work with!!!

  5. User avater
    meander_michaele 08/20/2013

    Hi, Bob, maybe I should zip off to peek in a thesaurus to find a more interesting way to "just simply beautiful" but, then again, why complicate things?! I love everything about your garden. It is so interesting and yet serene. You have wonderful plant combinations where each choice seems to bring out the best in its neighbor. The touches of chartreuse from the hosta and Japanese Forest grass are like little pools of captured sunshine and light things up in such a delightful way.
    The bridge in the sunken garden is gorgeous...forgive the curiosity but did you buy it premade or have it custom constructed?

  6. Jay_Sifford 08/20/2013

    All of these weeping trees.... larix, hemlock, Norway spruce.... make me weep, with envy. This is one of the most beautiful private gardens I've ever seen. Thanks for sharing.

  7. User avater
    HelloFromMD 08/20/2013

    Hi Bob,

    So creative to have the raised containers flank the opening to the garden! Love your water feature. Did you have to mound earth for the bridge or did you have a little hill? My property is flat and I want to have a waterfall and am wondering if the excavation for the 'pond' will be enough dirt.

  8. User avater
    HelloFromMD 08/20/2013

    I used to live in Rhode Island. To those not from New England there are stone walls everywhere on old farmland. Did you have walls on the property you bought or did you have it all brought in? In any case the hardscaping is wonderful!

  9. bee1nine 08/20/2013

    All truly remarkable for just twelve years! I would be most
    proud to show it off, as well.
    Bob, without question, this beautiful showcase of garden work is DIVINE!!

    Vojt, my words precisely, couldn't imagine starting from scratch in this stage of my life!

  10. tractor1 08/20/2013

    A lot of labor to totally landscape three acres without much open space and a magnificent result!

  11. GrannyMay 08/20/2013

    Pools and waterfalls, rock walls and stream beds, wonderful, immaculate plants perfectly situated - am I dreaming or can this be a real garden? Congratulations Bob, you certainly deserve to be pleased with the results of all your hard work! I vote for lots more photos!

  12. sheila_schultz 08/20/2013

    I think you said it all when you wrote that you started building your gardens and house... as if the house was secondary. The surrounding garden clubs and the Garden Conservancy are so lucky to have you in the neighborhood! Your vision is dream-like.

  13. Quiltingmamma 08/20/2013

    Beautiful and peaceful. I love these types of gardens, and how generous you are to share this with the gardening public.

  14. appaloosa 08/20/2013

    Too bad I live on the West Coast. I would like to visit your lovely yard.

  15. RenataCT 08/20/2013

    Just gorgeous! I love the sense of peace your pictures evoke. And since you are only a few miles north of me, I look forward to seeing your garden in person on Sept 8th! Thank you for sharing.

  16. thegardenlady 08/20/2013

    Fabulous! I am so excited, I have plans to be in your area on that date and will make a plan to attend the garden open day. I have a shady-under-trees area on my property not far from you and would love advice on how to start converting it from a big expanse of grass to woodland. You've created a beautiful space.

  17. terieLR 08/20/2013

    Oh MY! Love, love! I am checking the map and just may take a road trip this weekend.....

  18. terieLR 08/20/2013

    correction: 'that' weekend ;)

  19. janeeliz 08/20/2013

    Your garden is SO inviting...especially on this warm and humid day. You have done a magnificent job designing/creating an elegant woodland property. I'd love to walk through it..and would want to linger awhile...quite a take in all the details. Looking forward to seeing more.

  20. cwheat000 08/21/2013

    I am checking in late, but the first thing I did was Google maps how far this garden is from me. I hope I can make it to the open days tour, as I am only about an hour away. I need a closer look at this wonderful garden.

  21. ancientgardener 08/21/2013

    Absolutely beautiful. How I wish I could visit on Sept 8. I marvel at beds minus a single weed, no hostas which look like doilies (loved that description tn treeman) and nothing decapitated by marauding deer. The product of good luck and a tremendous amount of hard labor I expect. You should be very proud of what you have created.

  22. wGardens 08/21/2013

    Awesome, Fantastic, beautiful, inviting, inspiring, GREAT PLANT MARERIAL... oh, how I would love to be there. Thank you!!!! More photos please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. wGardens 08/21/2013

    Awesome, Fantastic, beautiful, inviting, inspiring, GREAT PLANT MARERIAL... oh, how I would love to be there. Thank you!!!! More photos please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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