Garden Photo of the Day

READER PHOTOS! John’s garden in New Jersey

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski

Today’s photos are from John Markowski in central New Jersey. John says, “I’ve been gardening for about ten years and started from scratch at my current home about seven years ago.

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski

“My biggest inspiration was my grandfather who obsessed over his roses and azaleas and ironically, I can’t grow either on my current property. As you can tell, I am a huge fan of ornamental grasses and native shrubs and perennials. My biggest challenges are deer, wet clay soil, and lack of time – have two children (6 and 9) and a job that takes up too much of my time.”

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski

For someone who’s pressed for time, your garden is gorgeous, John! Thanks for sharing it with us.

***John has a blog! Check it out HERE.

Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of John Markowski

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View Comments


  1. jwiegmull 04/10/2012

    Your garden is beautiful! I love all of the emphasis on the grasses. Especially given your time constraints they are a very efficient way to a wonderful garden.

  2. pattyspencer 04/10/2012

    Wow - lots to see in your garden. I bet it has something surprising to see every day. It's really beautiful!

  3. dukeofargy 04/10/2012

    Very nice, John. I really like the use of the ornamental grasses most of the year. Lots of work cleaning up though in the early spring.

    Like you, my father was famous for his roses, but I cannot grow them here. My neighbour can, but I can't. I can grow poppies here, but she can't. The soil makes such a huge difference.

    Looks good. Keep up the great work.

  4. Steepdrive 04/10/2012

    John - good to see your photos here and on your blog.
    I think of you as the grass king. Which reminds me I really need to divide some of my grasses and get them in other places in the yard.

    John is a fellow garden blogger at

  5. rwotzak 04/10/2012

    One of my favorite GPODs yet! It's not just the wonderful combinations of colors and textures, it's how John captured them with such artfully-composed photos.

  6. User avater
    meander_michaele 04/10/2012

    John, your pictures were just what the doctor ordered to make me feel less punished by being in a hospital room on a beautiful spring morning. I'm a few hours away from gall bladder removal surgery.
    Your plant combinations are all wonderful and work together beautifully. Love that last shot of the Russian Sage and Coneflower...they are definitely 2 plants that always play nice together.

  7. greengrowler 04/10/2012

    What a serene, naturalist landscape - you've done a masterful creation with native plants, John. I'm a fan of grasses, too - the annual clean up is really not so bad - one fell swoop and off with their heads!

    Meader1 - best wishes for a successful procedure and a speedy recovery!

  8. tractor1 04/10/2012

    A native plant wildflower meadow is a wonderful critter home and as greengrowler says is as easy maintenence as it gets, at the end of summer/beginning of fall when plants begin to wither roll over everything with a mower at a high setting (so as not to harm critters), distributes all the seeds and at the same time covers them with good mulch, with each successive spring it'll be healthier.

    Meander1: have a speedy recovery!

  9. sunterra7 04/10/2012

    Hi John, I usually just look and don't comment but wanted to say I love some of your color combos and was wondering what the red plant is that is in the photo with the striped grass & violet asters (?)

  10. mauritian_host 04/10/2012

    hi john, your garden is awesome, how i wished mine was like yours, anyway keep up the good work, cheers!!

  11. cwheat000 04/10/2012

    Beautiful garden. I am guessing the red leaved plant next to the asters is an itea 'little Henry' with its fall color? Meander 1 get well soon. So sorry to hear you are in the hospital. My grandmother had her gall bladder removed in her 40's ( in the 1950's) and lived to her late 90's. Apparently, the gall bladder isn't too critical to survival. I hope you at least get a lot of nice get well plant gifts. Speedy recovery!

  12. terieLR 04/11/2012

    Great selections for your NJ garden John. The fall colors really show off your foliage. Hurray for the grasses. I find it helpful to tie them with with twine when cutting them in the early spring. It keeps them tidy for easier cleanup.

    meander1 ~ I trust you are resting well. Follow directions ;)

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