Garden Photo of the Day

The Bridgewater Village Store’s 2012 display

Photo: Michelle Gervais

Those of you who have been with the GPOD a while might remember when I posted last year about the little country shopping center I pass on the way to work every day.

Photo: Michelle Gervais

It’s owned by a local man who sends his gardeners every year to create a new and fantastic garden in the hell strip for the shopping center’s employees and customers. It’s so much fun to see what they come up with every year (you can see 2011’s designs HERE and HERE!)

Photo: Michelle Gervais

This year’s design relies heavily on purple fountain grass and colorful cannas, as well as some dark-foliaged, yellow-flowering dahlias. I love it! What do you think?

Photo: Michelle Gervais

Also included is the garden outside the bank (in the same complex) and a shady green container planting in the little alcove between the bank and the country store. I could be wrong, but I think that monster-leaved green plant is Begonia parviflora…swoon!

Photo: Michelle Gervais
Photo: Michelle Gervais
Photo: Michelle Gervais
Photo: Michelle Gervais

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View Comments


  1. Miyako 09/28/2012

    Loved it the last time, love it this time. It seems very different from last year. It is nice to know that someone really cares about a small space that can be easily overlooked. Beautiful.

  2. User avater
    meander_michaele 09/28/2012

    If it doesn't already exist, I now officially coin the phrase "Bridgewater Worthy" when it comes to something oozing charm and character. I would go out of my way to patronize such a shopping area and would make sure to pass along compliments to the individual store proprietors about the lovely landscaping. I have a friend who owns a horse training business in the area and she introduced me to Bridgewater Chocolates...pure heavenly deliciousness! Thanks to the internet and mail order, they are now a special occasion treat between my husband and me.

  3. Annesfirst 09/28/2012

    Wonderful, inspirational use of the hell strip. What makes this situation so perfect is the lack of parallel parking along the curb. The plants won't being trampled by people getting out of cars.

  4. pattyspencer 09/28/2012

    An ugly strip of land turned magical! Love it!!!

  5. JTitus 09/28/2012

    I am so inspired by what they do. I too have a "Hell Strip" at the entrance to my subdivision that I would so like to make more attractive. I don't have the budget that they have so for now I have to be content with planting bulbs when I divide mine. The ground is so hard that a lot of the things I plant don't survive. But little bit by little bit I will chip away the ugly and replace it with a more welcoming site. They do a great job and it makes me want to work harder to creat something wonderful.

  6. user-7006916 09/28/2012

    I'm definitely checking this out this weekend!

  7. MichelleGervais 09/28/2012

    Meander1, I could be wrong, but I think the guy who owns this complex also owns Bridgewater Chocolates. Those chocolates are DREAMY. They sell them in the village store, and the factory is a few miles south of here. I don't get them often, but wowsers when I do.

  8. MichelleGervais 09/28/2012

    JTitus--that sound like the perfect spot for some rampant self-sowers like perilla and Verbena bonariensis. If you have any budget at all, I'd bet that your best investment would be manure and compost to make that soil more hospitable, and then you can cheap out on plants by direct-sowing some big, easy annuals as you slowly add perennial divisions. It sound like a fun project!!

  9. cwheat000 09/28/2012

    Being neighbors with Michelle, I too really enjoy their display each year. I missed last year post on Gpod, thanks for it again. I always enjoy it person.; good garden eye, Michelle. Antonio Reis must also be a neighbor , along with Miyako. Hi, neighbors. Heck, with technology gpod'ers are all internet neighbors. Hi everyone. I am amazed Meander1 has tried Bridgewater chocolates half way across the country, small world. ( Bridgewater's 2000 census population was only 1824 and it hasn't changed much) Even though they don't make them at that location, they sell the chocolates in the store pictured. They are really good. My husband and I gave them out in place of cigars( for those that didn't smoke as well as cigars for those that did) with the birth of our daughter. The store's lunches are every bit as good as their gardens. Well done Bridgewater.

  10. Auntgramma 09/28/2012

    What fun to follow the varied faces of this garden in such a surprising spot. I think the plant with the huge leaves in the container is Astilboides tabularis. I planted one in my shade garden and it took several years to get this big. It is rated for Zones 5 - 7 but it survived in my Zone 4 garden and I loved the huge leaves for adding a different texture.

  11. cwheat000 09/28/2012

    Sorry to be redundant on the chocolate production topic. I took too long to hit enter on my comment and Michelle beat me to it.

  12. MichelleGervais 09/28/2012

    Oh, Carla, the lunches! Soooo good. I used to get this artichoke sandwich there that rocked my world. I wonder if they still have it?
    As far as the chocolates go, since you guys are all probably craving a fix now, here is a link to the Bridgewater Chocolate website, where you can mailorder some treats:

  13. cwheat000 09/28/2012

    My husband's favorite is the chicken curry salad sandwich. I haven't tried the artichoke ( hope they still make it) but it makes me want to go there for lunch. The autumnal equinox must be making us all want to fatten up for the winter. The deer are sure doing that. I also love the Astillboides tabularis? I am looking for some large leaves to break up the small ones. I also am envious of the dark leaved yellow dahlia. I ordered a variety called sunshine just like that one , but the company I ordered from sent me a pretty , but green leaved dahlia.

  14. sheila_schultz 09/28/2012

    Color and texture with a whole lot of charm added to the mix... you are such lucky neighbors to be able to both visually and gastronomically enjoy this delightful shopping center! Thanks to you I'm feeling the need for some chocolate for breakfast! Have a fun weekend everyone.

  15. annek 09/28/2012

    There are times, when viewing the GPDD photos, that I actually salivate....I know, embarrassing to admit. This time, hearing about all those chocolates, I'm really finding my taste buds titillated! It sounds like an eclectic, fun shopping area, made all the more richer by the attention to details and love of flowers and plant combinations. Kudos to the owner for making his little piece of heaven all the more charming. (And yes, I will be trying those chocolates!)

  16. User avater
    meander_michaele 09/28/2012

    Several years ago we were gifted with a generous sized Bridgewater Chocolate's variety box by a friend to whom we extended human and horse hospitality as they were traveling from Bridgewater to AZ for a horseshow. Let me go on record that the all Dark Chocolate Toffee selection is beyond heavenly. You have to taste it to believe how delicious it is. It takes all my self control not to just gobble a whole box down as if calories and price don't matter when we treat ourselves to an order. My husband and I store the box at the opposite end of the house from where we sit to watch evening tv so that it becomes a ceremony to each have a piece. I know...we sound pretty pathetic, don't we?!

  17. Miyako 09/28/2012

    Cwheat000, we shall meet some day soon!

  18. tractor1 09/28/2012

    All those plantings go a long way to brighten up what would otherwise be ordinary parking spaces.

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