Garden Photo of the Day

Paul and Heather’s Indiana Garden

From bare soil to a shady garden

Paul and Heather Shelley are sharing their garden with us today.

We started gardening seriously here over a decade ago. At the beginning, our corner lot was nothing but dirt, as we had bought a newly built house in northern Indiana (Goshen).

We started with major structural plants, trees, and shrubs for privacy around the perimeter of the yard, and now we are in the process of transitioning to a shady yard, as the trees have matured over the last 22 years.

spring garden with lots of blooming trees and shrubsHard to imagine this started as a completely blank lot! Planting trees and shrubs is always a great way to start a new garden and create a beautiful space as they mature.

shrubs and trees in a spring gardenThe large shrub to the right looks like dappled willow (Salix integra ‘Hakuro Nishiki’, Zones 5–7), which has showy pink-and-white variegated new growth that is so colorful that it almost looks like it is in flower.

garden seating area hidden by plantsCareful plantings of shrubs have created a lot of privacy in the yard, and there’s a beautiful little sitting nook tucked away amid all the greenery.

Catmint plantCatmint (Nepeta × faassenii, Zones 3–8) is a great, long-blooming perennial that produces clouds of small blue flowers in the summer and is resistant to both deer and rabbit damage. The name “catmint” comes from the plant’s close relationship to catnip (Nepeta cataria, Zones 3–9), which is famous for its heady attraction to cats. Catmint has showier flowers and won’t lure every stray cat in your neighborhood.

shrubs in various shades of greenA diverse selection of shrubs, many evergreen, provides a strong backbone to this garden so it will look good every day of the year.

bright clean lawn with shady garden bedsCrisp lawns provide a tidy border to the increasingly shady garden beds.

 

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Comments

  1. User avater
    VanhaTaloSuomi 03/23/2021

    Nice work guys! Lovely to see conifers and flowering plants :) Looking forward to getting out there again soon. Hopefully the warmer daytime temps will finally melt all the snow we still have here!

  2. SueMccreary 03/23/2021

    What an inspiration. We’re moving to a new house (new build) so it too will be a blank slate. Your creativity is inspiring. Thank you for sharing.

  3. PattyLouise 03/23/2021

    Beautiful & peaceful! Flows so nicely! Love the dappled willow!

  4. User avater
    treasuresmom 03/23/2021

    Gorgeous! Could you come back & tell us about some of the trees & shrubs?

  5. User avater
    user-7007816 03/23/2021

    You've created some wonderful spaces with your trees and shrubs and then filled them with color. Well done.

  6. User avater
    SimpleSue 03/23/2021

    Oh the importance of trees and shrubs to make a beautiful garden seems to be so often overlooked by so many gardeners.
    You've created so much more than just a garden with some perennials...this is a wonderful job of landscape design accented with perennials.
    Just gorgeous!
    Well done!
    You left me wanting to see more photo!

  7. User avater
    SimpleSue 03/23/2021

    Oh the importance of trees and shrubs to make a beautiful garden seems to be so often overlooked by so many gardeners.
    You've created so much more than just a garden with some perennials...this is a wonderful job of landscape design accented with perennials.
    Just gorgeous!
    Well done!
    You left me wanting to see more photos!

  8. sandyprowse 03/23/2021

    Heaven. A true oasis. Very well done indeed! Bravo to you.

  9. BTucker9675 03/23/2021

    You've really created a wonderful garden space - excellent job creating structure that still seems so natural. Love that dappled willow!

  10. User avater
    Cynthia2020 03/23/2021

    Paul and Heather - what a great garden design! I enjoyed looking at all the photos and reading your gardening story.
    Your lawn is so healthy looking and I like that narrow peninsula of a bed in the last photo.

  11. Sheila_Schultz 03/23/2021

    Magnificent! The stature of the vertical elements is perfection combined with all of the textures of the horizontal shrubs and perennials. Simply beautiful.

  12. user-5117752 03/24/2021

    Simply beautiful garden design - shapes and colors! I would love to know what that juniper looking shrub is in the 2nd to last picture. Here's to a glorious spring and new gardening season!

  13. Maggieat11 03/26/2021

    Been so busy I just got to this post today. Well worth waiting for! GREAT job!!! Love it.

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