Garden Photo of the Day

Fall in May’s garden in British Columbia

Photo/Illustration: All photo courtesy of May Kald

Today’s photos are from May Kald in British Columbia. We’ve visited May’s garden several times, and it’s one of our favorites! (Refresh your memory HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE).

Today May says, “Fall has come to my garden! Each year it is different, but each year it is beautiful! We had a lot of foggy/misty weather last week, making it cooler, but the colours just pop! The stunning bright reds and oranges of some the maple trees, the burning bush and the sumacs, the bright yellows of our native big leaf maple, the purple/browns of the oak, and all the other bright leaves announce that they are ready to fall and make way for the bare branches of winter.

“Sometimes they all colour up together, some years in sequence, only they know why. Sometimes we don’t get heavy frost till very late in the year, keeping the more sheltered hardy fuchsias and ever-blooming roses going and going and going!

“The bright red rose named ‘Trumpeter’ (for Louis Armstrong) that grows outside my dining room window has sometimes kept blooming till the new year! I celebrate the season by filling vases with branches of colourful leaves, grasses, and flower stalks with dried seedpods. I refresh my containers that held summer plants with early-flowering bulbs and stick bits of greenery into the top to add temporary interest.

“Flocks of robins and other birds enjoy the pyracantha berries and grass seeds. I put food out for the Anna’s hummingbirds which stay here all winter. Raccoons climb the dogwood tree seeking its bright red fruit. The rabbits are eating anything different from grass, so I have given up trying to protect the low perennials.

“In a local thrift-shop I found a brass headboard for a single bed. I took it apart, sprayed it black, and added it to to the top of my gate, making it taller. The deer are somewhat baffled by the new addition, and have not tried jumping over it to get into my back garden. I have picked the last of the pears, so no more fruit remains outside and I can stop being vigilant. It is fall, and time to enjoy a rest!”

Every single season in your garden is lovely, May. Thanks so much for this newest update!

**** The push is still on–get outside and take some last minute shots, or compile a few you took earlier in the season. I’ll be eternally grateful…. Email them to [email protected]. Thanks! ****

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View Comments


  1. user-1020932 11/11/2013

    may, i always love seeing your garden and todays visit was no exception. absolutely beautiful in all seasons and from all viewpoints

  2. user-1020932 11/11/2013

    why is there chicken wire on the floorboards in the top photo on the right?

  3. tractor1 11/11/2013

    An auspicious audacious august autumn, May's autograph!

  4. User avater
    meander_michaele 11/11/2013

    May, every picture is such a visual delight...not only because of the beautiful subject matter but also for your exceptional eye in framing the view. I love your headboard addition to your wooden your entry a definite artistic flare. I'm guessing that the dusky pink trusses in the 5th picture down on the left belong to a hydrangea but I'm wondering which variety? Whichever one it is...your particular specimen looks like it is an over-achiever with every single stem ending in a humongous flower head.
    Your fall color is stunning and your photos certainly show British Columbia to be a gardener's heaven on earth.

  5. mainer59 11/11/2013


  6. GardenersWK 11/11/2013

    What a pleasant surprise to see your fall garden this morning! So many foliage colors in your first picture! I can't stop looking at it! Great design! I give you the title of queen of shrubs and flowering climbers!
    Great artistry in your pictures! The picture with Lacey walking down the path following you is my favorite..or maybe the one with the chair...oh! I can't decide!

  7. bee1nine 11/11/2013

    Wonderful succession of autumn color taking place in your
    garden this year, May. And nice close-up shot of the Anna's
    hummingbird too!
    * In honor of Veteran's Day for those of you here, who have
    served and sacrificed to defend and protect our country and
    freedom.. I thank you for your service!!

  8. GardenersWK 11/11/2013

    Oh sorry May, the black metal item was not a chair but the gate! Now that I finally read your comments!

  9. annek 11/11/2013

    Splendiferous! The design, the photographs, Lacey....and oh my, the colors! With your interspersed evergreens, I imagine your gardens are just as lovely in winter.

  10. wittyone 11/11/2013

    The colors are just beautiful----just as nice as flowers in spring. In fact spring is a favorite because everything is waking up and beginning to come along. Fall is wonderful because everything is still gorgeous in its own way and you know there is some needed rest coming for the gardener

  11. Doxnmom 11/11/2013

    What a delightful way to start the day! May, your garden is the best of the best. I love the textures and colors! Thank you for sharing with all of us who love seeing the GPOD.

  12. Wife_Mother_Gardener 11/11/2013

    Just beautiful, May! Thanks for sharing with us again.

  13. wGardens 11/11/2013

    I am lovin' it. Wonderful color, texture, combinations.... oh, I would love to visit! Great photos. Thanks for sharing.

  14. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 11/11/2013

    It comes as no surprise that your garden is stunning in every season!

  15. janeeliz 11/11/2013

    I love fall gardens and yours is simply scrumptious! How I'd love to stroll through it! Your photos capture the season's beauty wonderfully. Was this an especially colorful fall for you, May? Whatever…I love it!

  16. GrannyMay 11/11/2013

    How wonderful to find such a great bouquet of compliments first thing in the morning! Thanks everyone!

    Jeff (tntreeman), I put the chickenwire on the cedar floorboards to prevent a slipping accident when my 96 year old mother came to live with me. Our winter rains can make outdoor wood surfaces very slippery/slimy and I discovered this quick and easy technique from our local parks. Effective, but not aesthetically pleasing. Mom has passed on, and one of these days (Hah!) I will replace the chicken wire with something prettier.

    Thanks Meander1! The hydrangeas were some of the first plants I put in and I haven't a clue which variety they were. They did very well this year.

    JaneEliz, yes this fall has provided a progression of bright colours. All the maples have now lost their leaves, as have most of the other brightly coloured shrubs in these photos, taken mid-October. However, the Purple Smokebush and some of the Berberis shrubs are just turning bright orange-red, while the lilacs and birch still have lots of green leaves that probably will fall before they colour up. We have still had no frost.

  17. user-429519 11/11/2013

    Love the Sheltie

  18. GrannyMay 11/11/2013

    Meander1, I should have said that the hydrangea is a variety of Hydrangea paniculata. I don't know the specific name. The flowers are white, turning pink as they age, and the leaves are green, turning orange in the fall. Behind it is a Purple Smokebush.

  19. sheila_schultz 11/11/2013

    May, every season brings a different kind of beauty to your gardens. The soft colors of fall might just be my favorite, though. Your photographic skill brings such a haunting beauty to the misty BC days. Thank you.
    I'm a container geek so I must mention that I love the way you transitioned your containers for the winter season. They are subtly beautiful.

  20. GrannyCC 11/11/2013

    I have enjoyed many a stroll in May's lovely garden. It is always full of new delights. It is really a 4 season garden.
    Beautiful photos too.

  21. user-7006902 11/11/2013

    Beautiful! You have a way with woody plants. Such great combinations of leaves, textures, color. I aspire to have my beds look this beautiful with more woody plantings! How lucky for you to have hummingbirds all year - love those little birds.

  22. wildthyme 11/11/2013

    May, your garden is absolutely breathtaking, and I'm so impressed with your photography . . . I can't seem!). My favorite photo is the one peeking through the headboard, with the 'confine and release' of the borders and the lawn. I am also in love with Lacey. I had a sheltie once years ago, my Sadie, and I still remember her with great fondness. I apologize if you've already answered this, but what is the plant with the pink trusses in the container in the first picture on the top left? Is it the same plant as in the third picture down in that column? The chicken wire is inspired! I may try that on my 91 year old mom's deck!

  23. GrannyMay 11/11/2013

    Wildthyme, thank you! It is Remembrance Day here (like the U.S. Veteran's Day). I'll be going to the local service soon... so a very brief reply. I love my Sheltie, Lacey, too. You have sharp eyes, both plants are fall-blooming heathers.

  24. celiahoneysuckle 11/11/2013

    Hello May, A fellow British Columbian! I love your photo of peeking through the gate. All beautiful colours, such a gardener.

  25. GrannyMay 11/11/2013

    Oops, Wildthyme, I think we have the left and right columns reversed. In the 1st and 3rd photos in the right hand column, the containers are full of branches cut from my shrubs growing elsewhere in the garden. The pink-looking trusses are actually Pieris japonica branches with buds. The low black container is planted up with spring bulbs and one dwarf rhododendron. To give it some interest at this time of year I stick little branches into it, which eventually dry up and are removed later.

  26. user-1020932 11/11/2013

    may, i'm going to put chicken wire on all the wooden inclines going in and out of storage buildings and workshops. i don't know how many times i have skated down those things you have solved my problem with that trick, thx

  27. pattyspencer 11/11/2013

    A riot of colors - absolutely stunning! I like the idea of chicken wire too - I have steps leading down from my sun room that get very slippery in the winter (or when it's rained) so I either can fix it with chicken wire or power wash it and the chicken wire seems the least work - lol

  28. terieLR 11/11/2013

    Thank you May. Your color palette brought a smile to my face with fond remembrance of our own autumn glory. This fall went out with a bang here in central NY. Currently we are left with rust and browns but soon the snows will shower us with Winter interest. I am as intrigued with your clever headboard-turned-gate, as your deer. Great implement. Filling the containers with temporary foliage for this season is a wonderful idea also. And, what I wouldn't give to have hummingbirds around all winter! Happy Autumn in British Columbia.

  29. Jamesjoseph 11/11/2013

    Your garden is outstanding. I can't express myself like the other comments that are posted. Maybe one day I will.

  30. GrannyMay 11/12/2013

    Thanks again everyone! One last comment about the chicken wire. It does work very well, BUT, make very sure that you staple it down thoroughly so no bits of wire can work themselves loose to trip you up. Tripping is as dangerous as slipping!

    As far as the headboard gate top - fate was smiling at me that day. I actually went to the thrift shop to look for spoons, to try making my own dragonfly ornaments. I can't remember whose garden those were in but I was so impressed I wanted to try it myself (Thank you for that idea!!!). Well, I saw the headboard and just knew it would work to raise the height of my gate to keep the deer out. The gate worked beautifully, the spoon dragonflies did not (just cause you can do it does not mean it will look good!).

  31. cwheat000 11/12/2013

    Gorgeous tapestry! A salute to all the vets out there.

  32. wildthyme 11/12/2013

    May, of course you're right . . . I meant my "other" left! Thanks for the info on the Pieris. So gorgeous, but alas another non-hardy plant here . . . sigh.

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