Garden Photo of the Day

Mary’s Spring Garden

Blooms and foliage of the season

A bright yellow-green plant surrounded by darker green leaves

Mary Spencer is sharing her garden with us today.

I have lived in Westminster, Maryland, for 22 years and have been gardening the entire time. My garden has been a lifeline for me this year. I have a lot of shade.

pansies and violasNothing says spring like pansies and violas (Viola × wittrockiana, cool-season annual). With an enormous color range, complex flower patterns, and a cheerful tolerance of cold weather, they are a delight in any garden!

bright yellow-green plant surrounded by darker green leavesA huge ‘Sun King’ aralia (Aralia cordata ‘Sun King’, Zones 3–9) takes center stage with glowing yellow-green foliage. The darker greens of the hostas around it really set off the bright color of the leaves.

Blooming trees and shrubs by the side of a houseA beautiful scene of spring with a dogwood in bloom above azaleas. The dogwood looks to be one of the hybrid varieties, perhaps Cornus ‘Aurora’ (Zones 5–9), that boast excellent disease and pest resistance along with over-the-top flower displays like you see here.

container filled with foliage plants and one white flowerI love the subtle color combination in this pot. Sweet potato vine (Ipomoea batatas, Zones 10–11 or as an annual), coleus (Solenostemon scutellarioides, Zone 11 or as an annual), and a heuchera (Heuchera hybrid, Zones 5–9) all bring foliage in subtle shades of copper and brown, making a great backdrop for the white New Guinea impatiens (Impatiens hawkeri, Zones 10–11 or as an annual).

Pansies in a wide range of colors at the edge of a bed filled with hostas and fernsIn this bed, an edge of colorful pansies glows against a backdrop of variegated foliage.

shrub with white flowers in the foreground with other shrubs behindLooking through the blooming branches of a doublefile viburnum (Viburnum plicatum, Zones 4–8), we can see a Japanese maple (Acer palmatum, Zones 5–9) and more of the woodland garden behind. I love views like this in a garden, where the scenes beyond are partially obscured, giving a sense of surprise and anticipation to the whole view.


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View Comments


  1. Rebeccazone7 06/09/2021

    I love the tall fern behind the variegated hosta with the caladium in front. I tried to grow the caladium from bulbs, but alas the chipmunks had other ideas. I'm in love with the would get center stage. I also enjoyed the guy behind the Sun King...

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 06/09/2021

    That dogwood is amazing!

  3. User avater
    simplesue 06/09/2021

    Your Sun King’ aralia really got my attention, with those dark stems and bright leaves and doing well in a pot!
    I agree with "Treasuremom": your Dogwood is amazing, never saw one with so many big flowers!
    It was nice to see your garden, so relaxing in the woodland setting and interesting with all the details you've added in the garden!

  4. btucker9675 06/09/2021

    So much beauty - the dogwood and that viburnum especially. Pansies!!!

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