Garden Photo of the Day

Darryl’s Garden in Tennessee, from Jeff

Asiatic lilies with Sedum 'Autumn Joy', various maples. Photo/Illustration: All photos courtesy of Jeff Calton

Today’s photos are from Jeff Calton (tntreeman)! He says, “This is a client’s property we maintain, and as much as I would LOVE to take credit for everything there, I cannot. Through the years we have added to, edited, and maintained it but the garden is truly the vision of the homeowner, Darryl Fontaine.

Front, east exposure

“There is always something in flower, and in June the entire property smells of roses and lavender (I think the lavender plantings remedied the deer problem). The bee hives throughout the garden keeps things humming, and even in winter the bones of the garden make it a great space in my opinion. Yes, it’s intensively planted, but it is also intensively maintained to keep everything almost in bounds.”

Spiraea ‘Anthony Waterer’ and lavender

Gorgeous, Jeff! While it might have been Darryl’s vision (Darryl, you are one talented guy!), don’t undervalue what it takes to keep a property like this looking amazing through the years–serious creativity, motivation, energy, and skill. Bravo to both of you! **Jeff sent in so many great photos that we’ll see more from this garden tomorrow. Stay tuned!**

Front, looking west

I’ve been getting feedback that, while all the snow pics lately are nice, everyone’s feeling the need for more GREEN pics in the GPOD these days. I think we’re all getting a bit winter-weary…. so I need your help! Send in photos of your gardens from last summer! ([email protected]) Be sure to tell me a bit about yourself and your garden when you send in your pics. You’re much more likely to be featured if I have all that stuff at hand. Thanks, everyone!

Another view southwest
Driveway bed with Juniperus ‘Saybrook Gold’, lavender, weeping redbud, korean box, and crape myrtle.
Driveway bed with Weigela ‘My Monet’, Korean box, full moon maple, and Juniperus ‘Saybrook Gold’.
Looking south across front walk
Front, facing east.

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  1. perenniallycrazy 02/17/2014

    Kudos to Jeff (tntreeman)! Such a beautiful property, lush, colorful and welcoming landscape design and a picture perfect upkeep. I'm curious to know what "intensive maintenance" entails unless that is a well-kept tntreeman secret?

    Can't wait to see part 2 tomorrow as well.

  2. flowerladydi 02/17/2014

    It is beautiful Jeff!,,,, and while you say you can not take credit for the garden itself, I would assume that MUCH of it is your handiwork,,,,, and,,,,,being able to maintain the beauty is one of the biggest jobs there is!,, it is not always easy to keep things well in check and looking their best, I know,, and I would bet that Daryl allows you to do pretty much what you think is best,, after all, you are the pro! -:)
    I just LOVE the first photo of the asiatic liliew with the sedum and maples,, I can only imagine the blaze of color in the Fall,, it has to be stunning!,, and I hope you have a photo of that!! It is all so very lovely,,, he is lucky to have you,, and as I am sure you feel,,, you are fortunate to be able to ' play ' in his yard! That at least is how I feel when in some of my clients yards,,,, I am the fortunate one!
    I so look forward to more!!!!,,, and I may not go and look for some photos of some of my clients as well! Never really thought of that!
    Beautuiful work Jeff!!! Thanks for sharing!!!!
    One last question,, are you there weekly?,, do you mow lawns too?

  3. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    flowerladydi, we do not mow lawns/i have difficulty even keeping mine cut and trimmed we only plant and/or maintain ornamental plantings and seasonal color change outs, will start doing containers end of this month. we are there probably once a month or more often if needed. other properties we visit each 2 weeks and a few we go weekly. this years city garden tour has 2 of our properties included so we're gonna be hopping. i have fall photos somewhere but i have flooded Michelle with photos over the year , she needs a reprieve!

  4. flowerladydi 02/17/2014

    Hi Jeff,
    Thanks for the reply! I would love to see Fall photos if you care to share, or can find them,,,[email protected],,,,,( Diane ),,,and I totally understand about not mowing,,, I do not either,,,that is a FULL time job for ' those guys ',,,I also do seasonal change outs,,and as you I am sure feel too,,, that can be daunting just to come up with different ideas/color schemes each year that are not too repetitive!
    Congratualtions on your other properties being in the city tour! I'll bet they are great!!!
    Again,, Beautiful and I look foward to seeing more!

  5. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    Diane, container originality is HARD. digital photography helps tremendously. when doing SO many in a really short time and in a small town where everybody knows everybody it's very difficult to keep things fresh, different and new.i don't envy the mowing crews especially in a wet year. other maintenance chores you can juggle and shift around but mowing has to be on time every week no matter what. i'm crazy enough as it is without that added pressure

  6. bee1nine 02/17/2014

    Absolutely beautiful showplace of grandeur!!

  7. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/17/2014

    Jeff, I love the vibe this property and its plantings gives off. It has that wonderful combination of relaxed lushness balanced out with under control. You and Darryl are a very successful partnership. What is the vine that is scampering up and about around the entryway? Is it a topic of conversation between you and Darryl over how much to prune it?

  8. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    Mike, that is a mix of vines and it kind of drives me nuts. there is Akebia in there as well as some clematis and the birds have graciously planted virginia creeper. i think there is even some sweet autumn clematis in there too
    vines=high maintenance in my opinion

  9. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/17/2014

    Um, intensively planted? I see a little of mulch here and there. I'd be cramming in some more plants! :) Just beautiful and a nice sight for the snow-blind. I've been hearing the birds singing the past few days. Even they are sick of this winter!

  10. GardenGrl1 02/17/2014

    Tntreeman, you are doing an incredible job keeping all of those beautiful plants in their own space, yet allowing them to maintain a natural flowing appearance. Another showcase of your talent! I look forward to more of your photos!

  11. greengenes 02/17/2014

    Hey Jeff! Great work! I really enjoy seeing all that green! What a beautiful yard! I would be very proud to work that yard and to have you do it! Iam sure you will be under the pressure a little when the tours arrive. That's great about the lavender possibly keeping the deer away. I had heard that they don't like strong smelling plants so I did plant some lavender and rosemary around my little cherry trees. I also rubbed some vicks rub on some of the few branches that I have left of my kerria and it has seemed to work! Well you must be on vacation from gardening while its winter with snow. I would love seeing the fall pictures, too. Thanks for sharing!

  12. pattyspencer 02/17/2014

    Beautiful work - I love the fact that it is so lush looking and not stark and symmetrical like a lot of professional landscapes are. I really like that juniper - I was looking at the description and it says it gets the most yellow when planted in sun - wow that on sure is happy! Autumn Clematis is invasive in my yard. Started with 1 plant 20 years ago and now have about 15 ALL OVER MY YARD!! Ugh! I have fun pulling it all out over and over and over each season (this is something the catalogs don't tell you)- beautiful in flower tho

  13. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    pattyspencer, here both sweet autumn clematis and akebia are thugs. one OLD property we are renovating had one section covered in akebia, when removed we discovered a boxwood knot garden

  14. tractor1 02/17/2014

    That's quite an estate property, very well kept, Jeff. There's a lot of labor to keep all those plants pruned and the flower beds are a whole nother chore. Lawn maintenence is yet another job that I know very well, about 80% of my gardening is just mowing, and I know very well how a wet year triples the lawn maintenence, when the gound is wet the grass grows at the speed of light but can't be mowed. I'll assume there are many lovely specimen trees there, I hope to see some nice photos of them... and I know there has to be a money tree there! LOL Thanks for the visit, Jeff.

  15. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    tractor1, Darryl is a collector of japanese maples and there are many there both in ground and potted as well as Stewartia, Musclewood and many other plants not so often seen here. and bees bees bees and more bees . he has a glass hive inside the house with an opening thru the wall to the outside and of course, fountains and other bubblers around to provide water for the bees and butterflies. hummingbirds can and do divebomb you there

  16. toweringpines 02/17/2014

    Absolutely beautiful and definitely what I needed this morning. Bright and sunny here but still -12C with lots of snow cover.
    Darryl's garden is such a nice mix of plants and colours.Interesting to hear that sweet autumn clematis is invasive, have not had that experience here.

  17. sheila_schultz 02/17/2014

    Michaele is right, Jeff. You and Darryl are indeed a very successful partnership. What a gorgeous hunk of property. Darryl's gardens have just the right combination of wild and tamed to make them a show stopper in my book. Please tell him they are appreciated! And... I'd love to see the glass hive. How cool is that?

  18. GrannyMay 02/17/2014

    Beautiful landscaping, beautifully maintained! I too am sure that this has been a happy collaboration between you and Darryl. Congratulations! I especially love the climbing roses and the other climbers, breaking up the stark look of the brick, and tying the house to the surrounding gardens. Yes, they are a bear to maintain, but in my mind, totally worth the effort! Even the Akebia!

    Jeff, I love the hands-on part of gardening as much as I love the results. If I couldn't have my own garden, I would be getting my hands in the dirt in someone else's. Yet, I must admit, thanks to overdoing the work for too long, I no longer get by without some help. The first task that went was mowing the lawns! I don't miss doing that! And recently I hired a wonderful young lady to tackle whole areas in the back that had been taken over by invasive Lamium, periwinkle and ivy. Such a relief to hand that task over!

  19. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    May, there is no disgrace to having a bit of help,,,,,,,,,,,,,,my livelihood kind of depends on that!
    those climbing roses on the house and all the fences, there are many more in the back areas are a bear to maintain, BIG thorns and climbing up and down a ladder. by days end i looke like a life size bloody crucifix

  20. SisGof5 02/17/2014

    I'm in awe! Everything about this is exquisite. And I agree. It DOES take a lot of work to keep it looking like this...and you SHOULD take credit. Beautiful work.

  21. wittyone 02/17/2014

    Gosh, what a house and what wonderful landscaping! How much land does it involve? I can see that it would take some work to keep things in hand. The glass bee hive sounds intriguing. I do hope there is some sort of security system around the inside in case the hive got broken. What a mess that would entail.

    I love the fourth picture down on the right hand side----it looks like a house somewhere in the English countryside.

  22. Yeddi 02/17/2014

    Oh! My goodness, what a treat!
    Sometimes I am just driven to print out photographs from this website - this is one of those times. So many fabulous ideas which would work in my own patch.
    Thank you Darryl for allowing Jeff to share your garden, and thank you Jeff for taking the pictures and doing so very much work to keep it all so beautiful.
    I, too, have had to hire someone to help in latter years and whilst that is an enormous help in lots of ways I still find I need to get down on my knees and scrabble amongst my beloved plants.
    I love lavender and have planted quite a lot of it, but am going shopping asap and buying HEAPS MORE.
    Thank you so much.

  23. wGardens 02/17/2014

    SUPERB! I am lovin' this post... thank you Jeff... What a fantastic property to work with. Some great specimens, groupings... I could get lost in this for awhile! (And what a beautiful home to frame with these plantings!) I must look for that 'Saybrook Gold'... think I could find a good home for that~~ Darryl and Jeff, Thank you both for sharing these photos.... GREAT photos, GREAT property!

  24. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    wGardens you will love Saybrook gold . Junipers as a lot take a bad rap but there are many good ones out there and if you keep the hedge shears away from them they are excellent performers and give a lot of color year round.

  25. satisfaction 02/17/2014

    Stunning landscape design and obvious upkeep! The Japanese maples make me envious. I'll be looking for seasonal pictures of this property. Thanks for sharing!

  26. Aarchman07030 02/17/2014

    Kudos to the team responsible for this beautiful property. Not only are the gardens really lovely on their own, but they demonstrate an especially apt pairing of landscape and architecture styles--reminiscent of Gertrude Jekyll and Edwin Lutyens. Congratulations to all involved!

    Jeff--I find it incredible that you can occupy the head-space to maintain multiple gardens of this (or comparable) complexity.

    I am fully occupied planning, planting, maintaining and enjoying my urban front and back yards--the idea of needing to be fresh, original and enthused about multiple gardens seems so daunting to me.

  27. Meelianthus 02/17/2014

    Jeff ~ so great that you shared the green-ness of your very beautiful gardening talents. It takes a good amount of garden artistry to keep a garden looking that beautiful. A lovely looking piece of property. The Juniper is stunning as is the lavender. I never have had luck with lavender - too wet here and I don't have enough sun, I can grow great moss however!!
    I would really enjoy your 'city tour' of gardens, very special that two of your gardens will be on the tour. Kudos.

  28. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    Aarchman we have 32 properties to maintain all nice but this one is way different from the others. once you get to know the clients it's not that hard to do things to their liking. it's the containers that drive me crazy in spring. some of the properties are larger but many are smaller but we try to keep each one as nicely gardened as we can.
    Meelianthus most of that lavender will have to be replanted this spring. 2013 was an unusually WET summer and much of it just rotted away,,,,,,,,it's always somethin'. i think tomorrow is the back "yard" and i hope nobody is disappointed

  29. cwheat000 02/17/2014

    Daryl's vision and Jeff's skills really worked out. This garden is truely lovely. So often, a big home with minimal or cookie cutter landscaping, just misses the mark and cheapens the property. The huge amount of varied plants, in scale with home, give this property the feel of an old English country estate and ties it to the landscape. I love the juniper with the lavender. I also have that juniper. I think I will be inspired to plant a wave of purple next to it. I know the vines may be a huge amount of work, and possibly not the greatest for the masonry, but I adore the established look it gives the home.

  30. CJgardens 02/17/2014

    Jeff and Darryl,
    Beautiful property and great collaborative effort. I agree with wittyone that the fourth photo on right looks like an English garden and is gorgeous. Do I see a hedge of roses in the background of the third photo down on right? I can't even imagine how wonderful the fragrance must be. I'd love to experience the dive bombing hummingbirds and see the glass beehive inside the house. I love the 'Saybrook Gold' juniper so I researched it and it is okay for zone 4. The research mentioned 'Gold Coast' juniper as a more compact variety; do you have an opinion?
    Jeff, I think you have begun to educate me about trees and shrubs. I recognized most of them mentioned in today's post.

  31. GardenSmiles 02/17/2014

    What a treat to see while eating lunch after being able to spend a few hours doing spring cleaning outside in the yard! It's 53 degrees in SD! Yeah!

    The beautiful home and landscaping are absolutely wonderful. Jeff, it's a lot of work maintaining, but it must be a joy while you're doing it (except for the thorns). Anxious to see more photos tomorrow! The garden walks and water garden tours in Rapid City were part of our inspiration to make changes in our yard. Thanks Jeff!

  32. wGardens 02/17/2014

    Thanks, Jeff. Gosh, it would be great to work with you for a week! I could learn so much!

  33. user-1020932 02/17/2014

    CJGardens Old Gold is more compact with congested growth you won't ever get the same color or the foxtail look of the branches i MUCH prefer Saybrook Gold . that is not a hedge of roses but it is a row of climbing roses along the top of an iron fence. it's all along the driveway. and wGardens,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,come on down! i could use the help

  34. GrannyMay 02/17/2014

    Cant wait to see tomorrow's photos!

    Jeff, there were so many bog plants featured, both real and glass, at the garden show, maybe other designers had been affected by a wet 2013 summer and were getting prepared for a wet 2014! Rusted metal was also big!

  35. HaughtND 02/18/2014

    That is really a marvelous house and garden! I really admire the size and all the varieties you can grow with ease in your zone. And, I can't imagine the work put into it. You should be very proud of that masterpiece of a garden! You have an eye for movement, balance, texture in the garden. Like painting a picture with plants! We had another extreme temp day in ND. It was 49 degrees, so we took a trip to our local national park and got a show from a herd of buffalo. They were really in the spring mood! Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam...or jump and play as it was today! LOL I look forward to more photos tomorrow.

  36. janeeliz 02/18/2014

    It's all spectacular, Jeff....the garden, the house, your photos-and your work! I love it all. ...including the vines, which I know are work, but they add such character. Luscious lavender looks lovely with that handsome lime juniper! The blowzy spirea draping over the walkway are charming. What a pleasure it must be to work there! Can't wait to see what treasures tomorrow brings...I'm curious about the bee set-up.

  37. quinquek 02/18/2014

    What a great marriage of house and garden! And a great partnership between you and Darryl. It is absolutely outstanding, greatly because of the work you do - I can't imagine the amount of creative energy you must expend. I may have missed this, but what is the evergreen in the 1st pic on the left (mostly see its trunk but a bit of weeping-like branches)? Thanks to both of you for sharing.

  38. user-1020932 02/18/2014

    quinquek that evergreen is a large weeping norway spruce. it was beginning to overwhelm the spot so was limbed up

  39. wGardens 02/18/2014

    Thanks, Jeff! I may take you up on that some day!

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