Garden Photo of the Day

READER PHOTOS! Syd’s garden in Pennsylvania

Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter

Today’s photos are from Syd Carpenter in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Syd says, “I am an artist who sees making this garden just as satisfying as making my sculptures. My garden is densely planted with perennials, shrubs, and bulbs in full sun and dappled shade. I focus on leaf texture, shape, and color rather than flowers. But there is always something in bloom to add an extra source of sparkle.

Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter

“It’s not the rarity of a plant that attracts me, although I am always trying out new plants. Rather it’s about how the plants combine and compliment each other. It can be an elusive but thrilling outcome when things finally come together in a garden. Its as satisfying as when one of my sculptures signals it’s finished. But unlike a sculpture, the garden is never finished.”

Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter

Beautiful, Syd. Your artist’s eye has served you well in your garden, and your scuptures (check them out HERE) are fascinating! I spent altogether too much time studying them. Thanks so much for sharing both forms of your artwork.

Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter
Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter
Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter
Photo: Courtesy of Syd Carpenter

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  1. User avater
    meander_michaele 10/02/2012

    Syd, your garden is very lovely with all its elements working together in very pleasing harmony. Even though your artwork is decidedly unique and unusual (at least to this simple farm girl), your pieces have the successful melding of different shapes flowing into each other to form something that the eye feels comfortable with. This is true of your garden also which communicates an over all compatibility of shapes, textures, colors and heights.
    I have to confess to surprise that I didn't see any of your artwork finding a home outside in your garden...or did I miss noticing something?

  2. siesperanza 10/02/2012

    So glad Syd, that you shared your garden and your art with us. Wish I could see your art in person.

  3. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 10/02/2012

    Wonderful textures, colors and combinations. Makes me want to go out and spend time in the garden instead of work. Your artist's eye for composition and juxtaposition really shows. I like your art, too. Somewhat alien, yet familiar enough to not be disturbing; like those wild, far-out deep sea creatures. Thanks for sharing and congrats on your success.

  4. Vespasian 10/02/2012

    Just lovely I love the way the paths ramble and invite one in. The colors are amazing, truly a garden to love and be proud of of, congratulations!

  5. sheila_schultz 10/02/2012

    Texture, shape and color... that says it all! Your gardens express your vision of beauty in such a comforting way. They are beautiful, as is your art.

  6. plant_lady_55 10/02/2012

    I love all the hardscaping in your garden, i.e., the gate, the bricks, the boulders, the cement steps, the fences, and the beautiful cement sculpture. It all blends so well with the plantings. Most interesting!

  7. tractor1 10/02/2012

    Interesting settings. I'm curious about those light tan barked trees.

  8. cwheat000 10/02/2012

    Elegant and beautifully maintained. Nice mix of texture. I also love the bare tree trunks and wonder what they are. I also like the very fine texture of ? in the third picture down in the right column, next to the curved walkway.

  9. NWParker 10/02/2012

    Thanks to all for your comments.

    To cwheat00: the fine textured deep purple plant is alternanthera. It's an annual that I bring inside for the winter.

    To tractor: The light tan trees are a Japanese maple, a dog wood and a crape myrtle. the Japanese maple bark and perhaps the dogwood look light in the photos but they are not distinctly so. The crape myrtle does, however, have a lovely fawn like color and is very silky to the touch.

    To meander1: I have had my sculptures in the garden in the past but have rotated them out as I find other things to replace them.

    Syd Carpenter

  10. greenthumblonde 10/03/2012

    Syd, your crape myrtle is beautiful. Is that a protected area you have it in? A micro climate? I've always wanted one but I'm on the edge here. 6 minutes south of Lake Erie, just not quite close enough to support one through winter. 6b? 7a? Ahh so close and yet so far. I'm 6a-ish. Beautiful work. I too am an artist. Similar philosophies. :)

  11. annek 10/03/2012

    It is all beautiful, but I swooned over the second photograph. So lush and full and dramatic!

  12. pattyspencer 10/04/2012

    Love all the various forms and textures - everything works so well together and you really don't miss haveing every picture centered around flowers. Leafy stuff can just be so darn soothing!

  13. skevanston 10/05/2012

    I enjoyed both your garden and sculptures. I recently attended photo exhibits in the Chicago area that might be of interest. The exhibits, entitled PLACES FOR THE SPIRIT: TRADITIONAL AFRICAN AMERICAN GARDENS were at both the DuSable Museum of African American History and at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Although it might seem that black and white photos of gardens and their creators would be lacking, they are in fact filled with spirit, imagination, love and beauty. There is a book of the same name by the photographer, Vaughn Sills. I am enclosing links to the now closed exhibits. Perhaps they will be moving on to other venues around the country.

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