Garden Photo of the Day

Packed with Beauty, Part 2

Another look at a beautiful Michigan garden

We’re back with more of Joanne Kenyon’s incredible garden in Owosso, Michigan. I asked her how she keeps her garden looking so incredibly perfect.

My favorite garden tools include a string trimmer edger (only electric for me). I use it to keep my beds edged. And early in the season I use a hula hoe once or twice a week to keep weed seedlings under control until perennial foliage covers the ground. As time goes on, I’m trying to find lower-maintenance plants and am filling in now with many more bushes.

I have learned that it’s OK to throw out extra plants. I do share, but there are way too many. I have all sorts of plants growing in my compost heap. Fortunately, I have a wooded area where I can throw everything in. Favorite plants that do well are repeated throughout the yard.

I grow mostly perennials and shrubs. I like perennials because the garden is changing on a weekly basis. It’s never the same. And it starts blooming earlier here in Michigan, as annuals are not really up and running until late June or early July.

I don’t mulch, as it’s not really needed for weed control. I do add a layer of compost every year, except this year I skipped it. I don’t use much fertilizer except for annuals.

And then there is the train garden. We have a dedicated area filled with G-scale houses and figurines along with a G-scale train that even goes through a tunnel. The area is filled with mostly very low ground covers. It is a labor of love because it requires a lot of work to keep vegetation off the tracks. But it appeals to everybody because everybody loves trains.

Every year, this honeysuckle vine valiantly tries to take over. After bloom, I usually prune it back.


View from the front corner of the house. I created a large bed between the house and the neighboring driveway. It helps that we own that piece of property as well.

An overview from the back corner. I love using curved lines in the borders.

A repurposed fountain turned into a planter. I discovered that fountains aren’t that easy to maintain. so I usually plant annuals in mine every spring.

This rain barrel is part of the garden, although I don’t utilize it much. It’s pretty tricky getting to the spigot, especially with the rose bushes there.

Another view.


This pathway between the house and the large bed fronting the adjacent driveway is one of my favorite views. It is also what I see when I open the window shade in our bedroom every morning.


The back corner of the factory.


Train garden with ground covers. My husband assembled the buildings from kits and I “landscaped” them.


And there’s the train.

And we even have a tunnel. In the background is the garden shed where we store the train and buildings in winter.



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View Comments


  1. user-7003263 07/10/2018

    Joanne , what a delightful and beautiful garden you have created. The dedicated area filled with a tunnel, G-scale houses and figurines along with a G-scale train is fascinating. I was thinking I would show it to my grandson, but realized he would be after us to do the same here. Your garden is lovely. Thanks for sharing.

  2. User avater
    meander_michaele 07/10/2018

    Oh, what a fun set of pictures you have shared today, Joanna. They've been like a Russian nesting doll (Matryoshka) delightful visual treat after another until getting to the extra special little ones at the this case, the miniature railroad! You and your husband are an impressive team in creativity, craftsmanship, and diligent care taking. I love that colorful honeysuckle's a giant golden exclamation point drawing attention to how special you've made the side of the factory building. Everything is quite amazing!

  3. user-7017435 07/10/2018

    Good morning, Thank you for posting your gorgeous garden photos. The outdoor railroad is unique & outstanding. Good luck to you & your husband, Joe

  4. User avater
    meander_michaele 07/10/2018

    PS Hey, fellow gpod-ers, I wanted to give our garden loving community here a head's up that one of our own, Annek, has had her garden chosen to be a finalist in a competition put on by the website. Voting is now open to the public and her category is Best Garden Amateur owned by Kielian DeWitt. Her submission has the delightful title, "Floral Serendipity in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana" and here is a link to the voting address We can vote once a day until Aug. 3.

    1. User avater
      treasuresmom 07/10/2018

      Thank you for passing that info along.

  5. User avater
    treasuresmom 07/10/2018

    Love that train garden!!!

  6. Chellemp 07/10/2018

    The second day is as good as the first. Bravo Joanne and husband. Love the trains and village! I can't but think that this is the biggest maintenance area of the garden though as I hack overgrown grass and weeds out of my garden. I know how 'picky' railroads can be. Good stuff!

  7. Sunshine111 07/10/2018

    Wow! That is impressive Joanne!

  8. btucker9675 07/10/2018

    This is truly a garden of earthly delights! Happiness surely dwells there... Thanks so much for sharing it with us.

  9. bsavage 07/10/2018

    Absolutely fantastic!!!

  10. annek 07/10/2018

    Oh my, you have such large swaths of glorious plant combinations and color. You had my heart at the first photo with the rain barrel scene. And the train route is absolutely charming. What a lovely gift to friends and business partners who wander by from your husbands building!

  11. user-7007940 07/10/2018

    Very nice yard. I love the train!!

  12. carolineyoungwilliams 07/11/2018

    I did not think that part 2 could be any better but I absolutely love the Pathway and the back corner of the factory. You guys have done an amazing job in your garden. Thank you so much for sharing your garden, it's like creative art work.

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