Garden Photo of the Day

Susan’s reclaimed runway garden in British Columbia

Today’s photos are from Susan Ulmer, who says, “I am a fairly new gardener and just recently was able to use a space for flowers.

Our home is situated on a runway/taxiway at Mabel Lake in the North Okanagan of British Columbia, and much of our lot was previously used to tie down an airplane. When that plane was sold I immediately started to dig. We are plagued with many deer and very sandy soil so the learning curve is large.

I took these pictures to have a record of what to move and what to add next year. The fun has just begun!”

What a stupendous start, Susan! I find this garden so serene, unjumbled, and relaxing. You must keep us updated over the next few months and seasons!

Keep sending in photos of your gardens, everyone!

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View Comments


  1. perenniallycrazy 08/20/2014

    Hi Susan! What I can see from these awesome garden photos is that you have always been a gardener at heart and thank goodness that the plane sold and your passion has been unleashed. I love your plant choices, the curves in your beds and paths, the varying heights and textures and that all around view of the forest is an added bonus that you are and should be taking advantage of. Like Michelle, I can't wait to see what you do with the rest of it and over the seasons.

  2. User avater
    meander_michaele 08/20/2014

    Well, Susan, you definitely have a green thumb and a magic must be on a fast track learning curve! Your paths and seating space have very pleasing and generous proportions which is so awesome to have from the very beginning. You have a great eye for color in the use of your perennials, annuals and the deep red of the barberry bushes. And that is one fabulous trumpet (?) vine you have growing up the wall...does it attract lots of hummingbirds ?

  3. christianesterges 08/20/2014

    cleverly and beautifully reclaimed paradise ...!

  4. mjensen 08/20/2014


  5. NCYarden 08/20/2014

    Yes! Garden anywhere and everywhere you can.I applaud you jumping right in to create a beautiful and pleasant space. Keep going.

  6. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 08/20/2014

    Looks great and certainly not a freshman effort. I love what looks like a carved stone water basin and would love to know more about it.

    1. NCYarden 08/20/2014

      I really liked that basin too. Thanks for asking about it. I was actually gonna see if a potter friend of mine could reproduce something similar to it.

      1. User avater
        Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 08/20/2014

        It is so cool, but I was wondering if had been repurposed by the wildlife as a deer-watering trough! :)

        1. NCYarden 08/20/2014

          Hmm, interesting thought. Quite possibly. Though I hope to NOT attract any deer with it if I am so lucky to have something similar made for my garden. Ha.

  7. greengenes 08/20/2014

    Nice job, Susan! Iam so happy for you to find the passion of gardening! Its healthy, fun and relaxing! Sorry about the deer though. I love the third picture with the blank cream colored wall. Great for an outdoor movie night with friends! Or a tall narrow cryptomeria! I love all the rock, too! Oh happy days ahead for you! Have a wonderful time! Thanks!

  8. NC_Yarden 08/20/2014

    Love the display.

  9. sheila_schultz 08/20/2014

    Let me think, what would I prefer... an airplane tie-down or a gorgeous garden? Hmmmmm.... GARDEN! Susan, you aren't a novice gardener anymore, every design detail from the hardscape to your plant choices is perfect. Keep on having fun!

  10. Cenepk10 08/20/2014

    Yeah ! What Sheila Schultz said.. I have sandy soil as well- left over from the leaching of 3 large water oaks... My flowers don't look that good ! So pretty & lush. Cant wait to see how this develops

  11. schatzi 08/20/2014

    W0W!! This is gorgeous! Beautiful flowers, textures, color combinations, stonework, forest background - what's not to love? Keep up the good work and enjoy.

  12. foxglove12 08/20/2014

    Wow this doesn't look like a newbies garden. Great job. So smart to take photos so you can watch the transition. I'm going to start doing that. I too am plagued with deer. They have done their share of pruning... Love the vine between the windows. What is it?

  13. GrannyCC 08/21/2014

    Beautiful garden Susan. Wonderful design and flowers. Would love to see a picture before you tackled it. Perhaps with the plane in place.

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