Garden Photo of the Day

Jeff’s garden in Tennessee

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton

Happy Monday, everyone! Today’s photos are from Jeff Calton. He says, “I live and garden here in upper east Tennessee in Carters Valley just outside Church Hill. I have lived here for 21 years and the house came with four boxwoods, two roses, the large established trees, and one tulip coming up through the grass in the middle of the side yard.

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton

“Now it’s more of a plant collection than a garden because i can never resist trying something new…some work, but many do not. I work as a personal gardener here as well as a garden builder and have worked with many of the same clients for over 20 years now. Yep, i’m a certified plant geek.”

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton

Jeff, I can’t help but laugh at the image in my mind of that lone tulip in the middle of the lawn. You’ve come a looooong way. Beautiful!

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Jeff Calton

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  1. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/11/2013

    I'm amazed at the agave, cactus, and bonsai japanese maple. Those are real collector's items. Is the agave with the emerging bloom a second one? How long have you had it for it to reach maturity and it's sad end of life?

  2. wGardens 02/11/2013

    Wonderful! I enjoy feasting upon the vast selection of plants that you have expertly placed in your gardens. Love, especially, the variety of trees and shrubs; fabulous containerized Japanese Maple, too. A Beautiful space. Wish I could visit! Thank you for sharing.

  3. cwrosten 02/11/2013

    I'll bet a lot of those pots are spending time indoors now that it's winter! That's an interesting idea - plant collection versus garden - and I love the variation in leaf color that you have.

  4. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/11/2013

    Jeff, your garden gives off a feeling of generosity...all the lines flow and curve in a very appealing way and shows how you can't beat grass as a natural unifier. Even though you are fessing up to being a "collector", nothing looks cramped or forced into place.Each of your selections seem to have ample space to develop and fully express their natural shape and personality. And, your pot combinations are very interestingand look like they are planted for year round display.

  5. tractor1 02/11/2013

    I can see the "collection" but Jeff did a wonderful job of naturalizing, and nothing looks too crowded. I have to agree with meander1, the swards of lawn lift and separate very attractively... "all the lines flow and curve in a very appealing way".

  6. user-1020932 02/11/2013

    thanks for the comments! you're right the basement is full of dormant potted plants, the house is full and the bathtub in a rarely used bathroom is hosting a collection of Cycads and Dioons until spring. that is the same Agave one pic was taken maybe a week before the flower spike emerged i had that plant for probably 40 years. the containerized japanese maple was a wedding gift of 3 small 2 year seedlings from Bob Bullington of Hendersonville NC 27 years ago. have a few hundred species growing here and i wish all of you could visit,,,,preferably around mid March,,, i have ALOT of daylilies i need to divide and i could use the help!

  7. Celticjoy 02/11/2013

    Jeff, what are those succulents with the white blooms in the large container. Amazing grouping. Thanks

  8. user-1020932 02/11/2013

    honestly, i have no idea what the white flowered cactus is. it was given to me years and years ago and has grown, fallen apart, given birth to hundreds of offsets and continues to flower all summer at night closing usually by 10 am or so the following day. i have many cacti, euphorbia, succulents and sadly am ignorant as to the proper names of many of them

  9. Happily_Gardening 02/11/2013

    RE: White Flower.
    Tad difficult to be sure from the photo but looks like it might be a Echinopsis Oxygona Cactus

  10. user-1020932 02/11/2013

    you are correct Happily_Gardening and thanks for identifying it for me. i especially liked the youtube time lapse opening of the flowers

  11. Happily_Gardening 02/11/2013

    You are welcome Jeff! I thought the video was excellent too. I've capturing the bees feasting (crude video) on the pollen of our San Pedro Trichocereus cactus flowers..."pollen bar" for bees :). It is a sight to see!

  12. user-1020932 02/11/2013

    ihave never grown san pedro cactus but i did see it growing in Peru,,,,,,,,,,,HUGE

  13. Happily_Gardening 02/11/2013

    Peru, on my "to go one day" list. Our cactus is about 4ft. and as you'll see here, if you'd like, flowers look like yours.



  14. user-1020932 02/11/2013

    great insectography! when the Agave flowered i expected to be swarmed by hummingbirds but it didn't happen. the flowers were like fur on the end of the spike but i did get ants,,,,,,,,,lots and lots of ants

  15. Happily_Gardening 02/11/2013

    Surprised you don't get hummers...we get them with the bees. They explore and feast together. No ants on the cactus but plenty in other areas of the yard :). I am amazed to what the bud to flower process...first the little fuzzy/hairy nub,growing out like a trumpet and finally the gloriously flower bursts out. As you know it's an amazing to watch the phases!

  16. CJgardens 02/11/2013

    Jeff, very beautiful gardens. All the curved edges look so good together, and I like your use of conifers and shrubs. I don't see the daylilies that need dividing. I smiled when I saw the hose in the lawn. With the hot, dry weather last year, I never bothered to even put mine away. Something always needed watering. Your containers are great and give me ideas I'd like to try someday (that list gets longer the more GPOD pictures I see.) Thanks for sharing.

  17. user-1020932 02/11/2013

    i have lots of hummers here in summer just none on that particular agave. the flower spike grew 6 to 8 inches each day reaching 12 ft / took 3 months to show flowers and after all the anticipation i was a little underwhelmed.
    CJGardens, the daylilies are in the western border and weren't included in the photos, maybe 100 large overgrown clumps and 12 massive clumps of Agapanthus. it will be a total wrestling match

  18. NevadaSue 02/12/2013

    I love the way you have the beds coming close together so the lawn has a small pathway into the next garden area. Love the garden design. Can you tell me what the round evergreen looking bush in the forground of the 5th picture is and the evergreen looking drapy bush in the last picture. I really like the way they look.

  19. user-1020932 02/12/2013

    in the 5th picture to the left of the flat stones is a bed of Hellebores, behind that nearer the garage is Calycanthus, hanging from the tree is Macho fern with Clivia directly beneath it and Tradescantia to the right of the Clivia
    in the last picture that is Tsuga canadensis 'Pendula' in the 9th picture there is a Tsuga canadensis 'Gentsch White' directly in front of the Picea orientalis aurea 'Skylands'
    there are other varieties of canadian hemlock here but weren't included in photos. wooly adelgids are now a problem for some hemlock varieties here

  20. cwheat000 02/12/2013

    Plant geeks unite! I am totally digging your awesome collections. If I lived closer I would love to be there to help divide those daylilies.

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