Garden Photo of the Day

Diane’s garden in Illinois

Spring is so nice...clean, crisp colors. Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Diane Jaeger

Today’s photos are from Diane Jaeger in Chicago Heights, Illinois. She says, “Gardening is my passion and my business. However, the passion came first and I just kind of fell into the business! About 13 years ago I lost my job. I am a single Mom of 5 sons and at the time the younger two were still in grade school, so I really wanted to try to be more of a mom. Anyhow, to try to make a long story short, I answered an ad to weed someone’s yard in the area. VERY minimal $$, but I thought, “OK, I can do this!” It was close to home, my own hours etc. Well, it kind of blossomed…referral after referral and I decided to try to make a go of it. One thing led to another and here I am! One of my sons works with me, as well as one of his friends. Both have just graduated college, so I may need to find new help next year, but for now it works! When I moved into my house, the only thing in the yard (front) was a large silver maple and a few yews. The maple has remained, although I would love to take it out. That would be too expensive though, but the yews have left and I have removed most of the grass to create what I have now. In the back there was nothing other than a swing set–not one tree, flower, or anything. Now it is completely filled. I wish I had an acre or more. I would love to continue to plant new things! It is somewhat of an addiction I think, but a good one!”

Yeeeeaaaah, not nearly enough photos, Diane. Send us a few hundred more, will ya? Beautiful!!

This is part of the same area in the yard, but with more visible: a Chamaecyparis nootkatensis, and to the left, only partially visible, is a ‘Snow Fountain’ weeping cherry, ‘Gold Mound’ spirea, etc. Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Diane Jaeger

***I’m getting so many great submissions, but I can always use more! Dig out your cameras, take a big long walk around your garden, and SEND ME PHOTOS! I love having more than I could possibly process to choose from. Thanks!!***

***One more thing…..have you always wondered what your fellow GPODers are like in person? Never thought you’d get a chance to meet them? Check this out…. While the GPOD isn’t officially a taunton forum, it’s close enough, and I wanted to extend the invite. Anybody at all interested? I’d be willing to search for some gardens to tour…

This is a ‘Red Dragon ‘ cutleaf Japanese maple with ‘Blue Angel’ and ‘Sum and Substance’ hostas underneath. Also threadleaf Chamaecyparis to the right and a potted Japanese blue spruce, only partially visible, to the left. Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Diane Jaeger

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  1. user-1020932 06/06/2013

    nice combos and colors! you're going to miss your sons help and that of his friend. after 26 years in business my main gripe is finding and keeping reliable/trustworthy help.

  2. cwheat000 06/06/2013

    Your garden is beautiful. I barely have time to weed my own yard, let alone anyone else's. Kudos to your endurance and entrepreneurial skills( a much needed business you created). I love the Chamaecyparis nootkatensis and those tulips are fabulous in a mixed border. The color is just enough, it stands out without screaming look at me (like the loud tulips I planted last fall.)

  3. brainbear 06/06/2013

    Absolutely beautiful! I love the Japanese Maple. All of your hard work has paid off, well done.

  4. User avater
    meander_michaele 06/06/2013

    Hi, Diane, your pictures show a garden in perfect harmony...the colors work so well together and the whole impression is soothing and peaceful. I'm a big fan of the laceleaf Japanese maple variety 'Red Dragon' seems to hold it's red tones throughout the summer much better than the easier to buy 'Crimson Queen'. The variegated leaves on your tulips are a bit unusual and help highlight the tones in the Japanese painted fern planted amongst them. Everything is beautiful.

  5. bee1nine 06/06/2013

    I shall 'poop out' on a comment and just highly agree with
    everyone thus far! Kudos to you Diane!!:)

  6. WendyK_NoVA 06/06/2013

    Like Michelle, I'd love to see more photos! Beautiful and peaceful setting. I love how you've integrated the tulips among the other plantings.

  7. Daisy64 06/06/2013

    Loved you garden Diane! I liked the way you blended the shrubs with just a little color. Would love to see more pictures!

  8. Wife_Mother_Gardener 06/06/2013

    Beautiful combination with Tulip 'China Town' and ajuga! Great work!

  9. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 06/06/2013

    Looks dense and great! Would love to see more. Have to say that my favorite thing in your photos is the dandelion in the first photo sneakily trying to embarass you! i swear, I police my garden pretty much every day, but when a friend comes by there is always some 6 foot tall thistle or something smack dab in the middle of the garden! I think they teleport.

  10. tractor1 06/06/2013

    Great job on your garden, Diane. I bet if you had more space you'd fill it up in no time. You really ought to seriously consider having that silver maple removed... is that it in the first picture with vines growing up its trunk. Silver maple is not a valuable tree, it's prone to losing large limbs and disease... and that vine will weaken it. Look to have it removed at the end of summer, that's the slow season for that business so prices will be lower, and lower yet if you have them take the wood, lots of folks heat with wood. Thank you, Diane, and more pictures please.

  11. Nurserynotnordstroms 06/06/2013

    Diane,I woke up this morning to your wonderful photos. After a hard days work it must be wonderful to come home and enjoy your beautiful yard you created for yourself. I love the textures and the soothing color combinations you created. The Japanese maple is breathtaking. Have you pruned it or has it grown into that shape?Thank you for sharing all of your hard work and lovely results.
    Have a happy day!

  12. beckyrounds 06/06/2013

    Diane, what variety are your tulips? I love the variegated foliage.

  13. flowerladydi 06/06/2013

    Thank you everyone for all you wonderful comments,,, I truly enjoy what I do, and do not consider it work at all,,,almost compulsion!

    Becky,,, I do not remember the variety,, can not seem to find my invoice,, did just plant them last Fall, and part of the reason was the beautiful foliage,, short stature, ( I think they are a variety of ' species ' tulip,, and pale color. I will say that I somewhat surprised myself that they came out so well amongst the existing ferns etc.,, you know, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't!

    As for the silver maple., yes, I would love to remove it, but it is quite expensive,, and would end up annihilating everything around it!,, but, one of these days, I just might!,, as there are so many other great trees I would rather have!,,

    The Japanese maple I think was actually broken, which is why it is quite low, I have not pruned it, but may need to soon,,,

    Again,, thank you all!,, I so enjoy everyone's photos, and need to comment more myself!!

  14. Luvfall 06/06/2013

    Becky Rounds, I agree with Wife_Mother_Gardener that those beautiful tulips are China Town. I too like seeing the tulips peeking out from other foliage. Last fall I planted some yellow species tulips in my drift of blue phlox.

  15. flowerladydi 06/07/2013

    The name ' China Town ' does not ring a bell,, but I do agree, they look very much like them!,,,, the specific name escapes me as I can not locate any invoices, and not even sure where I ordered them from now! If I do come across it, I will let you know!


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