Garden Photo of the Day

The Summer That Was in Indiana

Top moments from this year in the garden

hollyhocks and other summer flowers

Inspired by Cherry Ong’s post yesterday, this is Joseph, your GPOD editor, sharing some moments from the past summer in my northern Indiana garden. I hope you’ll send in some shots from your gardens this summer too! It’s always fun to see what went well for everyone.

plant with bright pink flowers climbing up a fenceI planted this climbing rose ‘Dortmund’ next to the fence last summer, and this year it grew enough that I could start training it along. That process is a bit tedious, as ‘Dortmund’ is quite thorny, but I really love the effect. I can’t wait for next year when it will cover even more of the fence with flowers. (Please ignore the chaos in the background. This garden had been completely abandoned before we moved in, so it is taking lots of work to get everything looking good again.)

close up of bright pink dianthus flowersI got this little Dianthus at a local nursery. It was missing a tag, so I don’t know what it is, but I like it so much that I’ve been taking cuttings and spreading it around the garden.

close up of bumblebee in bright pink roseI grew this beautiful and fragrant rose from seed. It doesn’t have a name, both the bumblebees and I like it a lot.

caterpillar on parsley plantI put a little herb garden in a planter box I made, and it turned into a great habitat. This caterpillar grew up to be a swallowtail butterfly, fueled by the parsley that I had originally planned to eat but was happy to sacrifice to the caterpillars.

bumblebee on small pink oregano flowerOregano has the best flavor if harvested before it flowers—or so I’ve been told. How could I not let it bloom when the bees love it SO MUCH! It was hard to get pictures of them all, but I counted at least five different kinds of bees on the flowers in just one evening.

close up of light yellow and pink rosesHere’s another rose seedling that doesn’t have a name. It’s not fragrant, but it’s very pretty. The only downside is that the petals don’t drop off cleanly, so if you don’t deadhead, they hang on looking brown and ugly.

hollyhocks and other summer flowersI love hollyhocks (Alcea hybrids, Zones 3–8)! They looked great during the start of the summer.

cactus in a containerI love growing things from seed and am particularly proud of this pot of black lace cactus (Echinocereus reichenbachii, Zones 5–9). They start out small but quickly bulk up. This species is native to many quite cold parts of western North America and in theory should be hardy outside for me here, but I fear that our wet autumns and springs will be too much and make them rot. I’m trying to decide if I want to risk planting them out in the garden or just keep them in the container and move them into the garage to stay dry for the cold part of the year.

close up of yellow Chrysanthemum flowersChrysanthemum ‘Yellow Quill’ has been a star as summer has changed into fall. This is my first year with it and I’m quite in love. And it’s hardy to Zone 3!

bumblebee on yellow flowerThe open form of the ‘Yellow Quill’ flowers means they have pollen to offer the bees.


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View Comments


  1. sandyprowse 11/02/2023

    Hello Editor Joseph. Your statement in the photo re the Dortmund Rose is why we garden — “I can’t wait for next year when it will cover even more of the fence with flowers.” It gives us something to look forward to with anticipation and excitement. The flowers shown were amazing, the Hollyhocks, the Dianthus and the Yellow Quill prize winners. Thank you for sharing.

  2. billziebar 11/02/2023

    Thanks for sharing your gardens!!

  3. betsye 11/02/2023

    What a lovely garden! Love your photos.

  4. perenniallycrazy 11/02/2023

    I feel and love the excitement of your young garden! You have chosen some lovely specimens.

  5. User avater
    simplesue 11/02/2023

    Oh I love the way you think: letting your oregano bloom for the bees, sharing your parsley with the caterpillar, and growing a rose from seed- so impressive!!!!!!
    And your Hollyhocks, wow...I am giving them one more try next spring...I have had very little success the way my sun/shade situation doesn't support them.
    I really enjoyed this post- you are an inspiration!

    1. User avater
      cynthia2020 11/02/2023

      Re: hollyhocks
      I feel your pain. I collected some seed from alleys this year and will try again. Hollyhocks are so cheerful.

      1. sandyprowse 11/03/2023

        Full sun and there is no holding them back. Sprinkle the seeds on top of the soil and bravo!

  6. User avater
    cynthia2020 11/02/2023

    Joseph - enjoyed reading your gardening story - especially about your seed starts. the Echinocereus, Dortmund rose, and the Yellow Quill mums looked especially fabulous.

  7. btucker9675 11/02/2023

    Fabulous - I'm particularly envious of those unbelievably beautiful hollyhocks. And growing things from seed!

  8. user-1121656623 11/03/2023

    Beautiful photos, Joseph! I think your dianthus might be Dianthus 'Pink Kisses'. I planted this variety in one of our town's island containers after a dear garden club friend died unexpectedly in April. Dianthus means “divine flower” and comes from the Greek word meaning “flower of the gods". Very fitting for our dear garden club friend who was of Greek heritage.

  9. jos29803 11/03/2023

    I remember last year's photos of your garden and it is evident that you gave it lots of TLC. I love the pot of cactus and Dianthus are plants that require minimal care but fit well in almost any garden. Your young and thriving garden will I'm sure, will continue to being you joy. Thank for the update.

  10. Tz_Garden 11/07/2023

    Beautiful, and to think you've just begun!

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