Garden Photo of the Day

Summer in Lil’s Garden

Showstoppers in the perennial garden

Today we’re visiting with Lil Holloway in Bedford, Massachusetts, looking back at warmer and more flowery times in the garden.

When I look out the window at this time of year, it’s rather bleak. That’s when I pull up my photos and remember how beautiful the gardens were in the spring and summer. I often wonder if they will be that lovely next season. I am never disappointed, even though each season comes with its own surprises. A snapshot in time is what you see. Each season I learn something new that makes me a better gardener, and each season I wonder at the beauty that surrounds us.

perennial gardenThis is a view of half my perennial garden, which includes catmint (Nepeta × faassenii, Zones 3–8), Siberian iris (Iris siberica hybrids, Zones 3–8), and Japanese iris (Iris ensata, Zones 4–9), lots of daylilies (Hemerocallis hybrids, Zones 3–9), and Asiatic lilies (Lilium hybrid, Asiatic group, Zones 4–9), coneflowers (Echinacea species and hybrids, Zones 3–8), and a honeysuckle (Lonicera sp.). This garden is edged with rosebushes. The large pink rose on the right is one of three ‘Clair Matin’, a French rose. They are very disease resistant and have been in for 24 years.

perennial gardenAnother view of the perennial garden. Every year is a surprise, and every year I tell myself that there will be no new plantings. Not once have I been successful in keeping that promise to myself!

pink flowersYet another view of the perennial garden. The peony was late blooming. The yellow rose on the white trellis is David Austin’s ‘The Pilgrim’.

perennial garden bedI call this part of the garden “The Patch.” It is place I move plants to if they have outlived their stay in the big perennial garden. It includes lots of irises, coneflowers, roses, and a beautiful clematis that was a gift. The clematis, a double light purple, was unfortunately not in bloom as it climbed up the tree in this photo.

Asiatic liliesIt is so hard to pick and choose which pictures to share, but I didn’t want to forget my Asiatic lilies. The voles got to them a couple of years ago, so I am missing many, but they are still beautiful. (Learn how to get rid of voles in your garden.)

asiatic liliesMore Asiatic lilies. You can see a perennial geranium in the background that has been there for years. My husband put in this brick walkway for me, and it sure cut down on the weeding.

double clematisThis double clematis was a gift from a breeder, and I don’t know what she is. I put her on a trellis by the tree in The Patch. I wasn’t expecting much from her. Silly me—she’s gorgeous!

Tomorrow we’ll return to Lil’s garden to take in her beautiful collection of roses.


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View Comments


  1. PattyLouise 12/23/2020

    Beautiful flowers & so nice to see them when it's winter & everything is asleep! Love that clematis! Thanks for sharing!

    1. lilholloway 12/23/2020

      Covered with snow right now. Can’t wait for spring!

  2. User avater
    cynthia2020 12/23/2020

    Hi, Lil. I like how you shared with us some wide views of your garden and also some close shots. It was enjoyable to see those colorful lilies and feel like I was standing there. :- )
    The wonder, awe, and respect you have for your garden came across in your text... that we can plan, but there are always surprises.

    1. lilholloway 12/23/2020

      My pleasure! Thank you.

  3. greengenes 12/23/2020

    Good morning Lil...your garden is very nice and great for all of us to see during our dreary, cold and wet winter. Iam sorry to hear about the voles eating your lilies. I've had that problem too. I wanted to mention if you put poison out for them it kills the owls sad but true. I've done this myself but now I use a little set trap by the hole and put a big black plastic pot over it. In the morning you will have them. I also use a product called Molemax and sprinkle heavily over the bulb areas. The rain washes this nonpoisonous product down into the earth and they don't like the smell. I also put it in the holes they make and when planting new bulbs. It is just a deterant which has to be repeated but at least it doesn't kill the owls. Hope this helps...Merry Christmas and have a wonderful new year in your gardens!

    1. lilholloway 12/24/2020

      I think I have tried Molemax I have not had a problem the last two years. I know you need to keep on top of this issue. I have put in the bulb cages when I replaced some bulbs. Worked well. My garden keeps my spirits up during these trying times. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours.

  4. coastalgardener 12/23/2020

    So nice to see all those lovely blossoms and to be reminded that summer will come again. Thank you for sharing your garden.

  5. User avater
    simplesue 12/23/2020

    Aaaaaaahhhh what a feeling of being back in summer after looking at your pretty garden!
    Just a darling garden...and I like the stuff you wrote too: "Each season I learn something new that makes me a better gardener, and each season I wonder at the beauty that surrounds us."
    Such a great sentiment pertaining to gardening!

    1. user-7645917 12/23/2020

      Hi Lil! Your gardens are absolutely gorgeous! Every season I say I will not buy anymore flowers but like you I never keep that promise to myself! My husband always kids that I need to go to "flowers anonymous" for my flower addiction. Your garden structure and colors are glorious. I love seeing everyone's gardens here on Fine Gardening but then I always long to see them in person to experience their vivid colors and glorious aromas. Each season I look forward to all the changes in my gardens. It is always a surprise!

      1. lilholloway 12/24/2020

        My husband thinks I’m ill if I don’t go to a garden center at least once a week during the spring. And so many new plants and roses come out every spring that you just have to try something new. My dollars don’t go into jewels, it goes into the ground!! Much more rewarding.

  6. btucker9675 12/23/2020

    What a beautiful garden and that double clematis is stunning! Thank you for sharing this moment of bloom with us all.

  7. Rebeccazone7 12/23/2020

    I forgot about the voles, but one spring I went to feed a small fairy rose and it came right out of the ground...grr..buggers seem to be gone now. I love the pastel colors and also the red pathway. It sets off all the plants to their advantage. Clematis and I have an ongoing relationship...they don't like This was a great garden to share my morning coffee with...

    1. lilholloway 12/24/2020

      Know what you mean. The voles got a 10 foot climber, Winners Circle. Went to trim it and it came right out of the ground, no roots whatsoever! The Clematis suffers from neglect (didn’t think it would do anything) as you can see she’s a beauty. Husband built me a trellis with a seat and I sit there with coffee and just well as look at what’s working and what’s not,

  8. User avater
    treasuresmom 12/23/2020

    Love those lilies!!

    1. lilholloway 12/24/2020

      Me too! Lost some beauties to the Volvo’s, a bit discouraging. And very hard to weed in between as they are so tender. But they are beautiful!

  9. User avater
    bdowen 12/23/2020

    Favorites: the lilies and that double clematis! Looking forward to more photos.

    1. lilholloway 12/24/2020

      Oh, you are so kind. At this time of year it’s fun to look back and remember how pretty it was. Right now covered with snow!

  10. colleenak 12/23/2020

    Hi Lil! I believe your clematis is Piilu aka Little Duckling. Here is a link to more info:

    1. lilholloway 12/24/2020

      Hey thanks, now I can find out how to care for it. Clematis are not a strong suit for me. Thank you!

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