Garden Photo of the Day

Born to Garden

A love of gardening learned from family

garden bed full of purple flowers

Today we’re visiting with Elaine Esposito.

My love for gardening started over 60 years ago when my grandfather, who lived next door, had every variety of flower on his very small lot. He grew poppies, roses, irises, strawflowers, and so many perennials that I now I have in my gardens. My gardens started small but grew larger every year as I experimented with what I could grow to coexist with the many animals who loved them as much as me. I also wanted to enjoy the flowers with the changing weather, as I live in Zone 5. The secret to my gardens is to plant what I love. I shop local garden centers and mix the plants, mostly perennials, without a formal plan. My gardens are my passion, my stress relief, and my love of nature.

yellow butterfly resting on a flowerA swallowtail butterfly loves Elaine’s garden as much as she does.

garden bed full of perennials in front of a white garden shedA bed overflowing with perennials guides you toward the barn.

garden bed full of purple flowersClouds of purple Siberian irises (Iris siberica, Zones 3–8) bloom in early summer and have beautiful, grasslike foliage the rest of the season.

The blue-and-white blooms on this bearded iris (Iris hybrid, bearded group, Zones 3–8) suggest that it could be the variety ‘Batik’ or another similar cultivar.

purple and white irisesI love the strong contrasting colors in the petals of this stunning bearded iris.

garden bed with small bench and three bird housesBirdhouses scattered through the garden ensure that feathered visitors feel at home.

shrub with large white flowersA gardenia (Gardenia hybrid, Zones 7–10) unfurls its intensely fragrant white flowers.


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View Comments


  1. garden1953 06/07/2022

    Gorgeous gardens! Thanks for sharing.

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 06/07/2022

    Love the irises!

  3. User avater
    simplesue 06/07/2022

    Your garden is super pretty!
    The photo with the birdhouses and large rocks and bench and woods in the back- wow- love it!
    And if not for the bench to show scale, I never would have realized how tall your plants were! They are huge!

  4. btucker9675 06/07/2022

    Perfect garden - so colorful and welcoming!

  5. pplat 06/13/2022

    God bless your dear Grandfather who gave you the gift of gardening. Priceless!

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