Garden Photo of the Day

Springtime in Irvin and Pauline’s garden

The elegant, dense, cascading foliage and shape of this ‘Crimson Queen’ Japanese maple is showcased by planting it at the side of a pond.

Today’s photos are from Irvin and Pauline Faria. Irvin says, “The drought here in Carmichael, California, continues to remain a major threat to trees and plants, with some tree species in the Sacramento area already displaying brown foliage. We hope that our addition of mulch throughout the landscape, extensive ground cover plantings of Lamium maculatum, and the canopy of shade provided by oak trees will be adequate to preserve the understory of Japanese maples and plants.

Hummingbird border planting includes: Penstemon, ‘Tapine’ verbena, Coreopsis grandiflora, Verbena ‘Aztec Red Velvet’, ‘Caradonna’ sage, Salva ‘Hummingbird Coral’, ‘Blue Hill’ salva, geranium, and clematis.

“Our spring open garden day of “Pauline’s Garden” was a wonderful success with over 200 visitors strolling through the woodland landscape. Visitors marveled at the tranquility and serenity characteristic in gardens carved from the native woodland. They described it as “refreshingly cool, pristine, and serene”.

A shredded cedar woodchip path guides visitors past Nigella damascena (Love-in-the-Mist) flowing plants, blue oat grass, New Zealand flax, variegated liriope, and toward a purple loropetalum and Cornus florida (flowering dogwood).

‘Our spring garden offered an unusually stunning display of color, texture, and form while boasting an incredible variation in foliage. Here are some scenes of the garden as it appeared during the recent open garden day. Never failing to please visitors is a ‘Crimson Queen’ Japanese maple placed against the contrasting green background and contrasting pink dogwood blossoms. It remains a focal point of the inner garden.

A climbing ‘Autumn Sunset’ rose and a ‘Sweet Summer Love’ clematis cling to the arbor above a water lily pot.

‘Azaleas already achieved their zenith–consequently, the beauty of blooming roses and climbing clematis now prevail. A recently added feature is a border garden especially designed to attract hummingbirds, butterflies, and other pollinators. In that regard, to our delight two hummingbirds elected to construct their magnificently structured nests in Japanese maple trees of the inner garden.”

Iris ensata (Japanese iris) plantings border a pond fountain.

Every time I think I’ve see everything in your garden, you prove me wrong. Lovely, Irvin and Pauline, as always. Thank you!!

Our north hillside garden now has a much greater shade canopy than when originally planted fifty years ago. Majestic century oak trees and forty-year-old Japanese maples provide the shade canopy. There are 8 elevations of connecting paths.

Send me photos of your gardens! Email me at [email protected]

View of the north garden as seen from the top of the inner garden.
Floribunda rose (‘Easy Does It’) provides shades of mango-orange, peach-pink, and honey-apricot from blooms that are scalloped, ruffled, and classically spiraled.
An exuberantly blooming ‘4th of July’ rose climbs a wood trellis.
For beautiful colors, extravagance of blooms, and graceful habit, nothing compares with climbing ‘Josephine’ clematis. It always enriches the landscape.
‘Josephine’ clematis.
This black-chinned hummingbird is sitting on two coffee bean sized eggs. Her nest, made of plant down, tree lichen, and spider and insect silk expands as the babies grow. Intermittently we hear her effervescent voice when she leaves the nest and zips through the maple tree branches while snatching nectar and insects.

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  1. User avater
    meander_michaele 05/29/2014

    Not much tempts me to think about getting on a plane for a cross country trip but the chance to partake in the open garden day at Pauline's Garden comes as close as anything. Everything looks magical and had to be such a treat for your guests. Thanks so much for including the picture of the hummingbird sitting on her nest. I have never seen a hummingbird nest special.

  2. user-7006963 05/30/2014

    Looks like such a beautiful and tranquil place to be.......there's nothing I don't love!

  3. perenniallycrazy 05/31/2014

    Irvin and Pauline have weaved their garden magic once again! I am always wanting to come back for more. Thanks for featuring their garden regularly on GPOD Michelle. I have to say I do miss the "enlarge photo" feature on GPOD. Would it be possible to bring it back?

  4. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 06/09/2014

    Stunning as always and what an amazing vignette of that blue pot/fountain with the iris!

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