Today we’re visiting with Terry Karpen.
My garden in Redding, Connecticut, is a study of interplay between the planned and the wild, the artistic and the practical, the ecologically sound and the aesthetically pleasing.
Woodland shade perennial borders, in which the native trees and shrubs comprise the upper story, surround my log home, which is adjacent to a 1,600-acre Nature Conservancy preserve.
The property is protected by a discreet deer fence that was installed to allow the forest to recover from the ravages of the excessive local deer population. In addition to emphasizing hardy perennial plants, the structure and composition of the garden precludes all use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides, which minimizes both negative ecological impacts and maintenance costs. For example, fallen leaves are left on beds to provide natural mulch, invasive plant species are removed by hand, and volunteer native plants are encouraged. My goal with this garden, as well as with Queen of Spades, my garden and landscape design company, is to provide an example of how global concerns such as forest loss and chemical fertilizers and pesticide use can be addressed in gardening practices without compromising the grace and beauty of the landscape design.
Hosta ‘Great Expectations’ (Zones 2–9) is side by side with the foliage of Helleborus orientalis ‘Royal Heritage’.
Corydalis lutea (Zones 5–7) blooms all summer with small yellow flowers in the shade, complementing the foliage of Hosta ‘Regal Splendor’.
Have a garden you’d like to share?
Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!
To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.
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