Garden Photo of the Day

September in Alice’s Garden

Still looking good despite a dry summer

front steps with plants on all sides and a container of colorful annual flowers

Today we’re in Sweaburg, Ontario, visiting with Alice Fleurkens. We’ve been to her beautiful garden a couple times before (see Alice’s Front Garden in Canada), and it is always a pleasure to visit.

large panicle hydrangea at the edge of the front yardIt has been a difficult year to keep the garden looking nice, even though I enjoy it as much as ever. It has been hot and dry, and watering is certainly no substitute for rain. But this hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata, Zones 4–8) seems to have found a spot it likes. It has been moved three times (I think) but is finally happy.

sloped front yard garden bed along a drivewayThis is the low-maintenance section, which needs only a little pruning in spring and not need much water.

front steps with plants on all sides and a container of colorful annual flowersI do enjoy my annuals and plant them right into the planters. They last longer and get much bigger.

shade garden bed with lots of folaige plantsThis is my favorite shady spot in the backyard. The moles have been eating the hostas, but luckily not all of them. They also destroyed one sedum. Nothing ever seemed to bother the sedum until now. It is falling over little by little, and some of the hostas died off leaf by leaf. Any advice on that would be appreciated.

garden bed in the middle of the lawn with a large evergreen in the centerI planted these hostas to hide the ugly bare underside of that huge spreader. They apparently love that spot, because they took off like crazy in a matter of two years. There are no moles in the front yard.


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  1. User avater
    cynthia2020 09/20/2022

    Hi, Alice. Thank you for sharing your garden with us again. I especially like how the low maintenance section is so healthy looking and in the last photo, the plants look full and the color patterns are repeated. Like you, I like a mix of annuals and perennials.

  2. User avater
    simplesue 09/20/2022

    I love what you've done! I especially liked your plantings in the last photo- perfection! So interesting and peaceful.
    I've never come across a mole in the garden before but there are supposedly humane deterrents as solutions on the internet..they are oddly cute little creature just trying to live their lives.
    Your Hydrangea does look happy in spot number 3 LOL!'s good to know I'm not the only one who moves plants around like furniture until I get it right!

  3. btucker9675 09/20/2022

    Glad to hear someone else who moves plants until they find their happy spot. Just moved two Limelight hydrangeas last week and they already seem happier. Your garden is lovely and I hope the hosta eating moles will move on down the road soon...

  4. CTpat 09/20/2022

    Maybe the mole would be discouraged by some fine wire mesh around it underground. I don't know how deep they tunnel. Seems a shame to have a critter spoiling your lovely work!

  5. sheila_schultz 09/20/2022

    Your gardens are so lovely, Alice!

  6. fromvirginia 09/20/2022

    Love the variety of textures in the last picture. Thanks for sharing.

  7. [email protected] 09/20/2022

    Gosh, I need to move a small hydrangea, but thought maybe I should wait, but maybe I will give it a quick hop to a new spot. I think I research and plan so well before I dig a hole, and then one or another plant grows more than I anticipated! But the fearless gardeners on this site never steer me wrong.
    Love your whole garden- thanks for sharing!

  8. gardendevas 09/21/2022

    Alice, what beautiful gardens. I love all the rocks and evergreens in your interestingly shaped beds, with great interplay of shapes and colors. Bet it’s lovely all year.
    I garden in northeast Ohio, and it has been a very unusual growing year here as well, with plants behaving very unexpectedly.

  9. gardendevas 09/21/2022

    Regarding the moles - I’ve had good results this year with a small solar ultrasonic device.

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