I’m Sue Webel. I’ve been a Fine Gardening fan since the mid-90s and a GPOD follower for many years, but this is my first photo submission. (Find me on Instagram as @musabasjoosue.)
In 2016 I packed up hundreds of plants, a pile of garden paraphernalia, and three cats, sold my home and garden of 20 years, and moved 25 miles northwest to my current home in North Canton, Connecticut. I traded a mature garden on a quarter-acre suburban lot for a blank slate on 2 acres in a rural neighborhood.
In the spring of 2017 I hit the ground running. My first order of business in the new garden was to have a patio installed to better connect the house with the someday-to-be back garden.
Here’s how the back of the house looked in the winter of 2016-2017.
And here’s how it looked in August 2019. I’m a self-taught gardener and plant collector. When designing my gardens, I consider foliage color, texture, and form first, and I take a mixed garden approach. My gardens incorporate trees, shrubs, perennials, tropical plants, and annuals. I enjoy designing container gardens using unusual annuals.
A container on the stump of one of the towering trees removed from the backyard features an acalypha (Acalypha wilkesiana, Zones 10–11 or as an annual) that I overwinter indoors.
This patio container features Colocasia ‘Maui Gold’ (Zones 8–11 or as annual).
Garden along a path from the patio
The buyers of my former house did not want the fountain that had been the garden focal point on the patio, so we had to move it here. I’m so glad we did! It’s once again a patio focal point.
In late 2019 we had the front walk replaced. I had to redo the grade along the whole walk and integrate the existing gardens. It took about 12 yards of topsoil to fill and grade. Most of the plants in the existing gardens had to be moved, and the whole area had to be redesigned. I spent most of April and May working out here. Naturally there will be tweaks, but I’m pretty happy with the first pass.
One of my two cats is enjoying one of the back gardens. I use rock excavated from the property to edge all the gardens. I called my old garden Idyll Haven. The new garden has been aptly named Idyll Haven on the Rocks.
One of my back borders features a sourwood tree (Oxydendron arboreum, Zones 5–9) and an Aralia ‘Silver Umbrella’ (Zones 4–8). When I moved here, this area was wooded.
Have a garden you’d like to share?
Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!
To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.
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