Garden Photo of the Day

Peter and Geri’s Retirement Dream Garden in Maine

A dream retirement lake house gets a garden to match

view of garden and lake from raised deck

Hi GPODers! Imagine never having to pack up and leave the lake house after summer vacation is over. Today we’re in the garden of Peter and Geri Riendeau, who made that dream a reality. However, after finally settling into their retirement dream home they built on a beautiful lake in southern Maine, they were still hard at work. They spent nearly a decade creating the dream garden to match this slice of paradise.

The following are a few pics of our garden beds. We built our retirement dream home and permanently moved to Sanford Maine on Estes Lake in July 2016. Over the last 8 years we created garden beds from a clean slate after the build. 

pink peony with diabolo ninebarkThis is a peony that plays nice with the ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Monlo’, Zones 3–7) that is in full bloom. In the foreground is a small evergreen that stays small in a round growing habit. The yellow loosestrife (Lysimachia punctata, Zones 4–8) is peaking up between it all.

young red climbing roseA bright red climbing rose is still just beginning to climb over this arbor, but is already adding to the dreaminess of this garden.

rosa moonlight romanticaAnd another rose is lending to the romantic feel of this garden in both looks and name. Rosa Moonlight Romantica® (Zones 5–9) has incredible, double blooms to die for and a sweet, citrusy fragrance that is almost as delectable as the blooms themselves.

large climbing hydrangea on wooden fenceGeri and Peter clearly love their climbers—and for good reason! This old, wooden fence has great character and is the perfect look for a New England, lake-side home, but it looks considerably more interesting with this huge, climbing hydrangea slowly taking it over.

seating area on covered porchAll next to the perfect spot to sit, swing, and enjoy this garden!

long garden border along fenceA border after my own heart—plenty of beautiful blooms, but even more sensational foliage. Particularly love the bright pink peony and ninebark that matches that planting we saw above.

Popcorn viburnumLiving in your dream lake house in Maine means you need to think about garden interest in more than just the high season. Flowering shrubs are a great way to ensure lots of flowers when you’re outside the most, but still plenty of interest as the season winds down. Popcorn viburnum (Viburnum plicatum f. plicatum ‘Popcorn’, Zones 4–8) is absolutely covered in these fabulous flower clusters come spring, but leaves a second show for fall when the foliage turns red to purple.

garden shed surrounded by green plantsIn a dream garden, a shed is much more than a structure for utility, it’s another opportunity to create something beautiful. This brown shed trimmed with green is quaint, but becomes a whole scene when paired with a choir of diverse, green plants (and a clematis, yet another climber adding vertical interest).

view of garden and lake from raised deckAnother incredible seating area to kick back and enjoy the scenery that surrounds. When you can pull your eyes from the fabulous hydrangeas that line and creep onto the deck, you can catch a glimpse of the sun setting on Estes Lake in the background.

close up of coffee mug on porchThe perfect place to sit and enjoy the view. Hopefully Peter and Geri are spending more time sipping coffee and enjoying all their hard work!

With heatwaves sweeping across the country, I’d say we’re all dreaming of being lakeside in Maine all summer. Thank you for sharing your little slice of heaven with us, Geri!


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View Comments


  1. btucker9675 07/10/2024

    I am green with envy for this beautiful garden! Everything you've done works so perfectly together - marvelous. When my ninebark is in bloom it always reminds me of a Victorian-style Valentine's card - that old fashioned, romantic vibe. Mine is next to a red rose. I love yours next to the peony!

  2. User avater
    simplesue 07/10/2024

    Such a wonderful retirement plan- a vacation you don't have to take, but wake up to each day in a petty garden and a lake view! Great job!

  3. User avater
    carolcowee 07/10/2024

    I’d love to see photos of your gorgeous garden…in winter! I’m in Northern California where we are enduring months, yes, months of triple digits but February is our gorgeous spring and we do garden year round. We traveled many years in our rv and love Maine but I just can’t picture winter and spring!

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