Garden Photo of the Day

Collecting Japanese Maples

More than 30 varieties of maples provide year-round beauty

Welcome to Cindy Bolz’s Dallas garden.

I began this garden in 2001. The yard was a blank slate of lawn with four pecan trees shading the area from noon on. I began collecting Japanese maples that year and now have 31. I became a Master Gardener in 2013, and my yard will be on the MG tour in spring 2020. I spend a couple of hours a day working in my yard because I love the results. The heat can be grueling, and right now we are hitting 100°F in the afternoons.

Photo from 2001, just after buying the house.

A similar view and different granddaughter from about 12 years later.

Viridis Japanese maple (Acer palmatum ‘Viridis’, Zones 5–9) and Encore® azaleas (Rhododendron ‘Robles’, Zones 7–9).

‘Bloodgood’ Japanese maple in a newly created island bed.

Container plants in front of a ‘Butterfly’ Japanese maple that goes from pink to yellow to variegated white and green each year.

Morning coffee on my patio.

Hellebores and ‘Aconitifolium’ Japanese maple (Acer japonicum ‘Aconitifolium’, Zones 5–7).

I made this by plugging the hole in a basin and adding a pump and bamboo fountain.

November is colorful, with many Japanese maples in different shades of orange and rust. From top left, ‘Dragon Tears’, ‘Sango Kaku’, ‘Viridis’, and ‘Shishigashira’.

And spring! This is a ‘Garnet’ Japanese maple in April.

Leatherleaf mahonia (Mohonia bealei, Zones 7–9), ‘Sparkler’ carex (Carex phyllocephala ‘Sparkler’, Zones 7–10), purple oxalis (Oxalis triangularis, Zones 7–10), and white-veined pipevine (Aristolochia fimbriata, Zones 7–9).


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View Comments


  1. sandyprowse 08/16/2019

    Absolutely stunning! Wish I lived closer and could come on your tour. You have done an amazing job and in such heat. Bravo!

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      Thank you Sandy. I would love it if you could come for a tour any time.

  2. User avater
    user-7007816 08/16/2019

    Beautiful garden. I'm envious of your ability to grow Japanese maples. I have had success with Acer japonicum ‘Aconitifolium’', but several others have not been able to make it through our Michigan winters.,

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      I follow a few people who say their cold winters cause them to lose some acres. Bloodgood is pretty tough, maybe it would make it through the winter.

      1. user-7525974 08/18/2019

        That is aversion, not acres.

        1. user-7525974 08/18/2019

          I give up. Not acres and not aversion. Cannot find a delete button or an edit button.

      2. user-7525974 08/18/2019

        That is acers, not acres.

  3. User avater
    meander_michaele 08/16/2019

    Sincerest kudos to you, Cindy, on the wonderful transformation that you have achieved in turning your initially bare yard into beautiful garden areas. I love the artistic limbing up you have done on the 'Garnet' is now a living sculpture.

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      Thank you for the comments on the Garnet. I worried more than once about whether I was a little to aggressive with the pruning but I don’t like to see these beautiful trees in a big blob to the ground. Thanks again!

  4. Musette1 08/16/2019

    Cindy - what a gorgeous garden - and so calming! I love the view from your patio, it's a perfect place to start your day. The before/after photos are testament to your hard work and artistic vision!

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      Thank you Musettel! It would be nice to sit still at the patio table but what happens when I do is I then see a dozen things I need to do. Such is the life of a gardener.

  5. User avater
    simplesue 08/16/2019

    I really like your garden, it's so relaxing to look at. I love seeing a "before" photo to see the progress a gardener can makes with time, work and vision.

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      SimpleSue, I also like before and after shots. It still seems impossible that my garden looked like that on moving day.

  6. btucker9675 08/16/2019

    Wow - beautiful garden, granddaughter and dog! You are truly an artist. Love that gentle little fountain.

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      Thank you BTucker, I have built several versions of that basin fountain so there is always the sound of trickling water.

  7. user-4297063 08/16/2019

    Beautiful maples, such a great yard now...!!congratulations...!!

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      Thank you!

  8. cafernanmdq 08/16/2019

    Awesome. Hoy can you manage to grow maples with 100 F??

    1. user-7525974 08/16/2019

      Some of the Japanese Maples get crispy leaves this time of year but it doesn’t hurt them.

  9. marthaveronesi 08/18/2019

    Beautiful maples!! And gorgeous garden!! Congratulations!!! Love it

    1. user-7525974 08/18/2019

      Martha, thank you!

  10. Doxnmomx2 08/19/2019

    I am green with envy. I just cannot keep a Japanese maple happy in my 8b southern garden. Is there a secret? Mine are so unattractive with the crispy leaves. Your garden is a pleasure to see!

  11. user-5117752 08/25/2019

    Now that's a true Master Gardener's garden!!! Love the maples but it's how you put everything together that make your grounds so exquisite! Thank you for taking the time to share!

  12. carolineyoungwilliams 03/02/2021

    Cindy, your Japanese Maples are gorgeous. You have done a great job creating this beautiful landscape. Thank you for sharing.

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