Garden Photo of the Day

New Garden Inspired by the GPOD

Reading the GPOD inspired a new garden project

Today we’re visiting with Nicki Snoblin in Lake Bluff, Illinois.

Greetings! Back in April you published an entry titled “Bob’s Japanese-Style Garden,” and I immediately thought of an area in my yard where I could use a similar approach. We had a wedge-shaped bed containing a large horse chestnut tree, bordered by a sidewalk and our deck, with absolutely nothing growing under it. The spot is sunny in early spring but mostly in deep shade once the tree leafs out.

I collected several large rocks from elsewhere in the yard, and then my husband and I visited a nearby stone yard and bought an assortment of small to medium granite rocks to supplement what I had. I built up the corner of the wedge with rock and used the rest to create sort of a rock-garden look.

Deeper under the tree, I plan to put in some spring ephemerals that will give us early color but be finished before the deep shade arrives.

Many thanks to Bob for the idea!

raised garden bed full of shade plantsHere’s the area as you approach it from the side yard. The front section is a raised bed containing annual begonias and coleus. The purple oxalis (Oxalis triangularis, Zones 7–10) in front is in a pot that’s hidden by the rocks. (The plastic planter box will be replaced by a hypertufa trough my husband is making for me—an idea that came from another GPOD contributor.) In the background, there is a large-leaved hosta (Shadowland ‘Diamond Lake’) in a pot (which I hope will survive aboveground here in Zone 5b) and a heuchera, also in a pot.

close up on the small garden bedThe brick edging on the right under the horse chestnut tree (Aesculus hippocastatum, Zones 3–8) was already there.

garden bed from another angle showing off containersThis is the view from the deck and our family room. In the foreground along the edge are several clumps of sedge. In the far background on the right you can see our beloved tricolor beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘Tricolor’, Zones 4–7) showing its spring color.

garden bed under constructionThe bare bones of the project in early May

various flower colors in springVirginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica, Zones 3–8), bleeding heart (Dicentra spectabilis, Zones 3–9), and a few tulips and daffodils in my spring garden

light pink tulips in bloomA new addition this spring were some fabulous ‘Angelique’ tulips. These were extremely long-lived flowers in the garden.

large light pink peony flowerThis is one of my very favorite peonies. I dug it up from my parents’ yard many years ago; it’s more than 60 years old. To me it’s the quintessential peony.

yellow peonies in front of red rosesItoh peonies and roses now in bloom

 

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!

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Comments

  1. Garden1953 06/23/2022

    Very beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

  2. User avater
    treasuresmom 06/23/2022

    Very nice.

  3. User avater
    SimpleSue 06/23/2022

    I can feel your excitement- when a gardener takes a neglected spot and makes it a fun point of interest, and nothing like adding interesting rocks to a garden!
    I agree that is the quintessential peony! Wow!
    Your Angelique Tulips are amazing, and so are those red roses!!!

  4. nicki_s 06/23/2022

    Thanks! @SimpleSue, that is a rugosa rose - really easy care and it blooms like that all summer.

  5. BTucker9675 06/23/2022

    That horse chestnut is awesome! And your peonies are awesome! Such a pretty garden....

  6. JoS29803 06/23/2022

    Great job! Gardening inspires, relaxes, and gives us hope.
    Thank you for showing us your GPOD inspired creation.

  7. PatinMapleValley 06/23/2022

    Beautiful garden, and the bare bones photo contrasted with the new plantings was really awesome- that's an idea I should try to remember.

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