Time to meet the Austins…in my garden

That would be David Austin— roses.


Who doesn’t love a romantic garden? The fragrance, the charm, flowers billowing over paths. If you want to add some instant romance and Old World charm loveliness to your garden, then planting English bred David Austin roses is the way to go. David Austin roses have the look of old garden style roses, fill the air with lovely fragrance and with repeat blooming no wonder I’m smitten with these roses for my cottage style garden. I must confess though, it’s the full billowing fragrant blossoms of these roses draping from my arbors, trellises and containers that have me hooked. Also, my nose can’t get enough of them. These roses are so full petaled that sometimes people mistaken them as peonies in my garden.

Having added many David Austin roses about 2 years ago (many still considered babies), I must admit not all have been successful in my Zone 7b garden. I am a no-spray organic rose gardener, so a few did succumb to black spot and disease. However, having gone through several I have narrowed it down to these beauties; (Note: Some are new this spring that have yet to show their survivability).

Here are a few of my favorite David Austin roses in my garden today….



The lovely ‘Evelyn’ is absolutely beautiful. This was my first David Austin rose purchase. I’m training mine as a small climber (6/8 feet) in a small corner of my garden near my back deck. Even though ‘Evelyn’ tends to get blackspot from time to time, due to a part sun location, I keep her in my garden for her grace and wonderful fragrance.


'Bishops Castle'
‘Bishops Castle’

 I love pink in my garden. I actually have a bed of just pink roses, one of which is ‘Bishops Castle’. This rose has lovely large pink blossoms with a delicious strong fragrance. I plan on planting another next spring. Mine is getting pretty tall about 5 feet. ‘Bishops Castle’ tends to hold its lovely color even in the heat of my summers.

'Bishops Castle'
‘Bishops Castle’



'Benjamin Britten'
‘Benjamin Britten’

 A lovely red rose with deep cupped shaped blossoms and a nice fruity fragrance. The red color does tend to fade to a reddish-pink when they age or perhaps due to the sun. I have mine planted towards the back of my rose bed since it grows quite tall (6 feet) in my garden.


'Princess Alexandra of Kent'
‘Princess Alexandra of Kent’

“Princess Alexandra of Kent’… a fitting name for such a lovely rose. New to my garden this spring I must say that I am impressed. It’s beautifully shaped pink blossoms have a wonderful lemon scent. So far it’s a prolific repeat bloomer and holds its color very well in my morning sun location.


'The Generous Gardener' climbing rose
‘The Generous Gardener’ climbing rose

 A new climber to my garden, so its still a baby, this David Austin climber is quite beautiful. It has pale, soft pink blossoms that fade to white and a wonderful fragrance. Very healthy, resistant to blackspot thus far. Looking forward to next spring when it will produce more blooms.


Huntington Rose
Huntington Rose

 One of my favorite David Austin roses -‘Huntington Rose’. I had two in my garden until early this spring.  Sadly, the deer devoured them both. I’ve included this to my list since I plan on planting more next spring. It is a prolific bloomer, wonderfully fragrant, good disease resistance and has exquisite pink blossoms. I highly recommend this rose.


'Jubilee Celebration'
‘Jubilee Celebration’

Another newcomer, ‘Jubilee Celebration’ has beautiful large full blossoms and an unusual color of pink/orange/apricot. Lovely fruity fragrance. Mine are planted in large containers. David Austins catalog notes this rose does well in hot and humid climates in the southeast (mine Zone 7b); we shall see how this rose fares through one of my summers….



‘Tess of the d’Ubervilles’

‘Tess of the d’Ubervilles is a very lovely rose that I am growing as a climber in my garden.  Bright crimson red blossoms and a wonderful fragrance. Beautiful.


'Darcy Bussell'
‘Darcy Bussell’

 Oh my, the lovely ‘Darcy Bussell is probably one of my favorite. Beautiful rich red/pink rose blossoms with a mild citrus fragrance. One of the smaller DA roses,one of mine is growing in a large container, another in the front of my rose border. Rebloom is good and pretty resistant to blackspot.



Darcy Bussell
Darcy Bussell


 So try adding some romance to your garden—you never know what might happen…


Wordless Wednesday Roses…in my garden

Climbing 'Eden'
Climbing rose ‘Eden’


Climbing 'Eden'
Climbing ‘Eden’




Hybrid Musk rose 'Belinda'
Hybrid Musk rose ‘Belinda’




David Austin rose ‘Tess of the d’Urbervilles’


Climbing 'Golden Gate'
Climbing ‘Golden Gate’



Climbing 'New Dawn'
Climbing ‘New Dawn’



Double Knockout roses
Double Knockout roses



'Julia Child'
‘Julia Child’



Hybrid Musk 'Lavender Lassie'
Hybrid Musk ‘Lavender Lassie’



Rose de Reucht



Climbing 'Lady Ashe'
Climbing ‘Lady Ashe’



Climbing 'Laguna'
Climbing ‘Laguna’



Climbing 'Iceburg'
Climbing ‘Iceburg’



Conifers and ‘Amber’ Flower Carpet shrub rose



‘Buff Beauty’

Springtime Tulips…..in my Garden

My Gardening Friends,

It’s been a long time since I last posted on my blog and I apologize for that and the lack of pictures. The need to help others and myself dominated the better part of these last 4 months. I’m glad and hopeful things are finally getting back to normal.

My garden is bursting with blossoms everywhere. All my hard work in planting bulbs last fall paid off. The tulips have just about finished their explosion of color and my peonies, irises and roses are gearing up for their beautiful display. Right now the Japanese Maples and azaleas are in their splendor (pics to follow in another post).

Here’s a peek of some of my tulips blooming in my garden this Spring….



Every year I plant this purple and pink combination ‘Strike Me Pink’ in this bed. These colors blend beautifully with my emerging JapMaples.





Pink and soft yellow tulips ‘Pillow Talk’.


I love the combination of maroon ‘Queen of Knight’ with the lovely white ‘Maureen’.




White daffodil- ‘Thalia’



Snowflake-‘Gravetye Giant’
Daffodil- ‘Hawera’






Lovely ‘Angelique’- my favorite tulip.



Till my next post…..hope you enjoyed!

‘Daffodil Drama’….in my garden

My Daffodils are taking center stage in my garden this week. Many I planted years ago; I planted 300 more last fall. Some of my daffodil choices are: Ice Follies, Carlton, Double Campernelle and Pipit, just to name a few.

Here’s a peek….










Daffodils from previous years in my garden…




My son- Nicholas


Next post…my tulips in all their splendor.







My Garden Moments of the Year…Farewell 2013….


      As 2013 draws to a close, its time to reflect on my many garden moments throughout the year. 2013 was an exceptional year for my garden; blossoms galore, abundant rainfall, tolerable summer temperatures and shhh… magazine photo shoots, to name just a few. I’m hoping mother nature will bless my garden once again for 2014.

So, just sit back relax, and enjoy my 2013 garden virtual tour….Cheers and Happy New Year!


Camellia’s, the ‘Winter Roses’ in my garden….

Camellia japonica 'Nuccio's Bella Rosa'
Camellia japonica ‘Nuccio’s Bella Rosa’


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Camellia japonica ‘Nuccio’s Gem’


Assortment of Camellia's from my garden.
Assortment of Camellia’s from my garden.



Painting my garden with beautiful roses….

"Marilyn Monroe' hybrid tea
“Marilyn Monroe’ hybrid tea


‘Love Song’ Floribunda rose


'Don Juan' climbing rose
‘Don Juan’ climbing rose


'Mystic Beauty' Bourbon rose
‘Mystic Beauty’ Bourbon rose


Tulip ‘Spring Fling’…(finally finished my bulb planting for 2014 just this week)….


My alluring Japanese Maples and Conifers…


My Fringe Tree…

Fringe Tree
Fringe Tree



Captivating Clematis….

Clematis ‘Rooguchi’
Clematis 'Rooguchi' rambling on my garden bench...
Clematis ‘Rooguchi’ rambling on my garden bench…



C. viticella 'Etoile Violette' and 'Grande Dame rose
C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ and ‘Grande Dame rose




C. 'Victoria' and 'Etoile Violette'
C. ‘Victoria’ and ‘Etoile Violette’



Clematis 'Nelly Moser'
Clematis ‘Nelly Moser’


Yes, More Roses….

Climbing rose 'Don Juan'
Climbing rose ‘Don Juan’


Hybrid Musk rose 'Buff Beauty' gracing one of my three obelisks.
Hybrid Musk rose ‘Buff Beauty’ gracing one of my three obelisks.



David Austin 'Evelyn'
David Austin ‘Evelyn’


'New Dawn'
‘New Dawn’



Amber Flower Carpet rose with weeping Blue Atlas cedar.
Amber Flower Carpet rose with weeping Blue Atlas cedar.



Some of my Summertime containers…

Dragon Wing begonia window boxes
Dragon Wing begonia window boxes


Succulent Basket
Succulent Basket


All dressed in black container.
All dressed in black container.


Blue container's corner of my garden.
Blue container’s corner of my garden.

A Little Wildlife to amuse….

Woodpecker in my garden.
Woodpecker in my garden.


Bunnies in my garden. They loved my begonias!
Bunnies in my garden. They loved my begonias!


So much for growing cherry tomatoes for myself...Mr. Squirrel would have a daily feast!
So much for growing cherry tomatoes for family…Mr. Squirrel would have himself a daily feast!





Pumpkin time….

Pumpkin Spills adorning my front entrance.
Pumpkin Spills adorning my front entrance.


Roses and Pumpkins
Roses and Pumpkins


My fall potting bench.
My fall potting bench.



Christmas garden basket
Christmas garden basket


My Christmas potting bench.
My Christmas potting bench.


Evergreen Christmas garden arrangement.
Evergreen Christmas garden arrangement.


Goodbye 2013…..


Happy New Year to All!

Health and Happiness for 2014!
















A Southern Style Christmas in my Garden…

Since I skipped decorating my garden for Christmas this year (been focusing on decorating inside for Christmas) I thought I would repost this from Christmas Garden past….Happy Holidays!  Peace and Happiness!


With all the hustle and bustle of the holidays, I’m a bit late in posting photo’s of my Christmas garden this year.   Here’s a peek….

Note: All Christmas arrangements, containers, wreaths and photos were designed and made by me (Brenda Addington) …The Graceful Gardener.


My garden bench decorated with fresh evergreens from my garden…


My potting bench all decked out for the holidays.






Christmas arrangement made from magnolias and evergreens picked from my garden.






A Christmas basket (my former succulent basket) embellished with evergreens, lenten roses and yes, a few succulents.


My Outdoor room console table.


My outdoor room mantel. Every year I have a family of birds nesting in one of these birdhouses.


My Entrance that I decorate each year with my life size Santa and over-sized bell swags I made several years ago.






My outdoor Christmas arrangement – ferns, berries and some faux and real evergreen sprays and magnolia leaves ( I have 6 huge magnolia trees in my garden).


I love the Christmas wreaths I made five years ago. I spruced them up a bit this year adding more pines cones and evergreen sprays.

 Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from my garden to yours……








A ‘Festival of Pumpkins’ …..in my garden



I Love to decorate my garden for the seasons. Fall is no exception, especially when it comes to PUMPKINS!

Nothing enhances my garden more this time of year than their vibrant array of colors, shapes and warmth. Pumpkins combined with gourds, mums, grasses, Chinese lantern plants and other ‘fall’ accents bring a cozy and inviting feel to my garden. With little effort, (except for the effort of collecting all the pumpkins) you too can decorate your garden with colorful pumpkins.

I must warn you though, it is fun and addictive!  Of course, I tend to go a little over the top with pumpkins in my garden, but that’s what makes it ‘festive’.

Note:  All photo’s, fall garden decor, containers and wreaths were designed and made by …ME…”The Graceful Gardener”.


Hope my ‘Festival of Pumpkins’ inspires you to add some to your garden…..



 Spilling down my Staircase….

Every year, I always choose a colorful medley of pumpkins, gourds and mums to spill down my front entrance staircase. Many of my pumpkins were purchased from my local farmers markets or pumpkin farms in my area.












My Potting Table and Bench……





My Moongate…..





Pumpkins in containers and spilling into my Garden….









My Fall Wreaths and Entrance….HaPpY FaLL!




Thanks for visiting…

Full Moon Maple






Summertime In My Garden…The Graceful Gardener’s Containers…2013

 dragon wing


Even though I’m quite late in posting this, I still wanted to share some of my containers with you this summer.  I took many of these photo’s around the 4th of July, but to my surprise, many of my containers are still looking lush and full due to the unusual abundance of rain and lower temps we’ve experienced this summer (usually temps are in the mid-90’s this time of year), and of course, with the faithful application of Annie Haven’s Manure Tea.

Having designed and planted all my own containers for years, it’s truly still one of my favorite ways to be creative in the garden. This year I played around with lots of different colors and I even dabbled a bit in miniature container gardening this year. 

Hope you enjoy the photo gallery of just a few of my containers…

 Romantic white…

Ingredients: Sun Parasol White Mandevilla, ‘Diamond Frost’ Euphorbia, Lobularia ‘Frosty Knight’, Scaevola ‘Bombay’, Supertunia white, White geranium, Dusty Miller ‘Silverdust’, trailing Mezoo, ‘Silver Falls’ Dichondra.


 Burst of Orange…

Ingredients: Canna ‘Australia’, Canna ‘Tropicanna Gold’, Infinity Orange New Guinea Impatiens, ‘Hot Shot’ Orange portulaca, Begonia boliviensis Bonfire, ‘Orange Marmalade’ Crossandra, Sweet Caroline Bronze sweet potato vine.


 Nearly Black…

Canna ‘Australia’, Cosmos ‘Choca Mocha’, Heuchera ‘Obsidian’, ‘Black Velvet’ petunia, Creeping Jenny ‘Midnight Sun’, Iris chrysographes ‘Night Ruler’ (bloomed in spring see below), Scaevola ‘Romeo’.


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Iris ‘Night Ruler’


 Succulent Fever…

I turned a non-functioning fountain into a succulent planter.


Ingredients: Variety of Succulents- Sedums, Echeverias, Trailing Mezoo and my favorite-Kalanchoe ‘Fantastic’. Dichondra ‘Silver Falls’ was also used in this planting.

 Cool Blues…

Blue and White Container Nook in my garden filled with: Plumbago, white scaveola, white petunias, Endless Summer hydrangea, lobelia, Angelonia and Lobularia ‘Frosty Knight’.

 Succulent Basket…

My favorite container in my garden- this huge cement basket- which I purchased over 15 years ago, is filled with an abundance of succulents. They thrive in this basket!
Ingredients: Assortment of succulents: Sedums, Echeveria, Sempervivums, Kalanchoe and my fav-‘Zwartkop’ aeonium.



 Purple Vibes…

Ingredients: Petchoa SuperCal ‘Poppin Blue’, Calibrachoa ‘Double Amethyst’, Petunia Glamouflage ‘Grape’, Scaevola ‘Romeo’, Dusty Miller, Dichondra ‘Silver Falls’, Bourbon rose ‘Mystic Beauty’.


Ingredients :Perilla Magilla, Persian Shield, ‘Divine Lavender’ New Guinea Inpatiens, Calibrachoa ‘Double Amethyst’, Vinca ‘Illumination’.


Graceful Grasses ‘Fiber Optic’ surrounded by blue scaevola, dusty miller,blue salvia, sedum and hosta.

 Peachy Planting…

Ingredients: Miniature Rose ‘Cupcake’, creeping jenny, trailing Mezoo,Calibrachoa ‘Double Amethyst’, ‘Blackie’ sweet potato vine.

 Moody Blues…

Ingredients: Torenia ‘Purple Moon’, ‘Silver Carpet’ Lambs Ear, Barbara Sanderson glass Icicle.

 Variegated Foliage…

Ingredients: Small variegated English Holly ‘Argenteo Marginata’, Lamium maculatum ‘Beacon Silver’, surrounded by Japanese Painted fern and Golden variegated Sweet Flag.



I gave miniature gardening a try this year and love it!  So fun …

I designed a ‘scaled down’ version of my own backyard when I planted this miniature garden container. Lots of stone, dwarf conifers and texture. What do you think?






Of course, I had to plant a Mini-Zen garden….


mini herb
Mini- Herb Garden with some cucumbers…


Probably my favorite of all- My Frog Prince Miniature Container.

 Purple Foliage…

A newly purchased container this year filled with ‘Black Magic’ Elephant Ear, Persian shield, Purple heart Wandering Jew and ‘Black Dragon’ coleus.

 Colossal Orange…

Ingredients: Banana Musa ‘Zebrina RoJo’, Begonia boliviensis ‘Bonfire’, Infinity Orange-New Guinea Impatiens, Dragon wing begonia,Coleus ‘Black Dragon’.


deck orangetallcloseup

 Do you enjoy planting your own container gardens?

Check out my post from last year here...

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The Potting Bench Nook…in my Garden




Ahhh.. the potting bench, practically every gardener’s dream (at least mine) for their garden.  A place used for starting out young plants, storing our small garden tools, clay pots, soil and watering cans. Oh, and I forgot to mention an opportunity to unleash the ‘design diva’ in those of us who love to decorate!

I wanted my potting bench to be simple and functional, as well as, adding a bit of character to my garden. Mine is situated in ‘a sweet little spot’ between my garage and chimney wall under an overhang somewhat protected from the outside elements. The fact that’s its located in the coveted morning sun area of my garden allows me to garden in a wonderful shady spot during the hot afternoon. My garden spigot is located right next to my potting bench so watering and hosing down my dirty mess is super easy.

My Potting Bench- Dragonfly hooks that I recently purchased from Lowes hold some of my garden items: watering cans,small hand shovels,etc.


potting benchblog



I made this wreath earlier this year specifically for the wall above my potting bench using garden items I rarely used. I did have a faux bird nest & eggs but the crows attacked it this spring. Oh My!



When my potting bench isn’t in ‘work mode’ I sometimes decorate it with the change of seasons adding a focal point to that area of my garden…..


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Winter- Christmas


So do you have a ‘special nook’ in your garden?


The Wordless Wednesday Rose Blooms….in my Garden

David Austin-'Bishops Castle
David Austin-‘Bishops Castle



'Green Romantica'
‘Green Romantica’



'Green Romantica'
‘Green Romantica’



'Marilyn Monroe'
‘Marilyn Monroe’


'Mystic Beauty'
‘Mystic Beauty’


'Frances Meilland'
‘Frances Meilland’


'Frances Meilland'
‘Frances Meilland’


'Belinda'  hybrid musk
‘Belinda’ hybrid musk



'Bees Knees'  miniature rose
‘Bees Knees’ miniature rose


'Peach Drift' rose
‘Peach Drift’ rose



David Austin- 'Tess of the d'Urbervilles
David Austin- ‘Tess of the d’Urbervilles


Other roses painting my landscape in my garden ….https://www.thegracefulgardener.com/?p=2150









Captivating Clematis…. in my Garden

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Oh, the lovely captivating simplicity of a clematis bloom. How can anyone resist this elegant yet tough vine growing up a trellis, embracing a climbing rose, or meandering through small trees, shrubs or perennials in your garden. This versatile vine can even be grown in containers, given routine care and choosing the right variety.  And to top things off, if you cut their flowers for indoor arrangements they will last for days. Of course, with so many beautiful clematis to choose from, I’m sure any gardener would likely be able to find the right one(s) to grow in their garden.

Well, I certainly couldn’t resist this ‘Queen’ of vines. Hence, I have once again embarked on another plant obsession, adding already to my rose, conifer and Japanese Maple one. These last couple of years I’ve planted more than 50 clematis (the majority I got from Dan Long, at Brushwood Nursery) and somethings tells me I’ll  be adding more of these beautiful charming vines to my garden in the future.


Naturally, since I already have several vertical elements in my garden, clematis seemed an obvious plant choice for me to explore—here’s a peak of a few of them….


Kordes climbing rose 'Laguna' and  Clematis "Gipsy Queen'
Kordes climbing rose ‘Laguna’ and Clematis “Gipsy Queen’



One of the most stunning and largest of the viticellas is Clematis viticella ‘Venosa Violacea‘.  Very dramatic in my garden with its contrasting purple-violet and white flowers. Lovely!

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Clematis viticella ‘Venosa Violacea’



Clematis 'Niobe'
Clematis ‘Niobe’


Clematis 'Niobe'
Clematis ‘Niobe’


 Clematis integrifolia ‘Rooguchi‘ has captured my heart…. lovely ink blue flowers shaped like a hanging bell.

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Clematis integrifolia ‘Rooguchi’


Clematis 'Nelly Moser'
Clematis ‘Nelly Moser’


Large flowering clematis "Crystal Fountain'
Large flowering clematis “Crystal Fountain’

 Wow!  Clematis ‘Crystal Fountain‘ is blooming beautifully in my garden right now.

The flowers are spectacular- 4 to 5 inches wide with a frilly center (resembling a fountain-like spray) against its rich lavender blue star shaped flowers.

Blooms May-September in my Zone 7b garden.

'Crystal Fountain'
‘Crystal Fountain’


Clematis 'Ruutel'
Clematis ‘Ruutel’

Large flowered Clematis ‘Ruutel’ has simply shaped red flowers that blend well with my autumn ferns.

C. 'Ruutel'
C. ‘Ruutel’


Clematis texensis 'Princess Diana'
Clematis texensis ‘Princess Diana’

Clematis texensis ‘Princess Diana‘ has stunning deep redish pink flowers.

The exquisite tulip-shaped flowers are a fine tribute to the late princess.

C.texensis "Princess Diana'
C.texensis “Princess Diana’



C. 'Victoria' and C. viticella 'Etoile Violette'
C. ‘Victoria’ and C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’

 The striking combination of Clematis ‘Victoria’ and C. vitcella ‘Etoile Violette‘ climbing up one of my many large pine trees…makes for a nice camouflage don’t you think?

C. 'Victoria' and 'Etoile Violette'
C. ‘Victoria’ and ‘Etoile Violette’


Clematis 'Rouge Cardinal'
Clematis ‘Rouge Cardinal’


Clematis x 'Starry Nights'
Clematis x ‘Starry Nights’

Beautiful massive 8 inch bicolor blooms on a relatively new variety-Vancouver Starry Nights Clematis.  I have Starry Nights growing in a large container that’s placed next to a trellis.

C. viticella 'Etoile Violette' and 'Grande Dame rose
C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ and ‘Grande Dame rose

Growing up my stone arbor is C. viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ elegantly accompanied by the nodding blooms of Hybrid Tea rose ‘Grande Dame’.

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In all honesty, I’ve just begun my journey with growing clematis so I will confess that I’m no expert. I just plant them in good amended soil, give them reasonable moisture, a good organic fertilizer and shade their roots and they are pretty happy. At least that’s what works for me in my Zone 7b garden.


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For more information on selecting and growing clematis check out these links:






























Growing my Roses—Up, Up and Away ….

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Climbing rose ‘Don Juan’



For many years in my garden, I have been dealing with the challenge of growing roses with the forces of nature in its ‘animal‘ form. The deer, rabbits, voles, moles and those rascal squirrels, have caused a lot of frustration to this gardener. It was very disheartening to have lovely blooms or fresh new growth on my rose bush one day only to have it completely devoured by the next day.  Sometimes, I could hardly believe my eyes– one day my rose garden was full of colorful blooms and the next it becomes just a bunch of lifeless sticks!

Thankfully, due to those first hand formative years, I’ve learned how to control some of these ‘hungry rascals’.  One way is by faithfully applying deer repellant (Plantskydd is a good organic one) to all my roses. This can become costly and very time consuming but it does seem to work.

Another way, which I did often in my previous gardens, was to venture into the world of vertical gardening. Roses are especially at their most dramatic when they are growing up and spilling over a vertical support. It evokes a feeling of romance and antiquity to my garden and keeps them out of harms way from my ‘rose eating predators’.

So, I’ve slowing started investing in vertical structures to add to my garden. Mostly arbors, trellises, and obelisks. Many of my trellises and obelisks were purchased online and a few of the wrought iron arbors I had custom made as to add to the architectural flair of my home and garden.  Presently, I’ve got four arbor structures, four obelisks and several trellises, as well as, eye hooks and fishing line for my three ‘Don Juan’ climbing roses. I’m sure I’ll add more over the years, but for now my climbing roses are safe…that is until the Japanese beetles arrive!

Here’s a few photos of my roses climbing these vertical structures in all their splendor and glory this beautiful month of May….


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 Beautiful climbing rose Eden graces my wrought iron arch once you enter into my backyard. Eden climbs on one side while a newly planted Lady Ashe is being trained up the other.


Climbing rose 'Eden'
Climbing rose ‘Eden’


Climbing rose 'Lady Ashe'
Climbing rose ‘Lady Ashe’


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Hybrid Musk rose 'Buff Beauty' gracing one of my three obelisks.
Hybrid Musk rose ‘Buff Beauty’ gracing one of my four obelisks.



Climbing here on another wrought iron arch is Kordes climbing rose ‘Laguna’.  These photos do her no justice. She is a beauty!

Kordes climbing rose 'Laguna'
Kordes climbing rose ‘Laguna’


 I’ve planted purple clematis ‘Gyspy Queen’ to accompany her…


Kordes climbing rose ‘Laguna’ and clematis ‘Gypsy Queen’


This arch was attached on the stone pillars of my upper deck area.

 This arch was attached to the stone pillars of my upper deck area. ‘Laguna’ is being grown on both sides in large containers.



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 ‘Don Juan’ climbing up my front entrance archway. Eye hooks and fishing line were used to attach the canes.

Climbing rose 'Don Juan'
Climbing rose ‘Don Juan’


Making a spectacular display each spring is my lovely climbing rose ‘New Dawn’.  Her romantic presence will always be welcome in my garden….

'New Dawn'
‘New Dawn’

Free standing trellises were installed by my husband and I for her to climb upon. Later, eye hooks and fishing line are put in place to keep her in bounds….


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Double arch planted with climbing roses Rev d'Or and Kordes 'Golden Gate and 'Moonlight'.
Double arch planted with climbing roses: ‘Rev d’Or’ and Kordes ‘Golden Gate and ‘Moonlight’.

You would never guess that I purchased this double arch only two years ago. The climbing roses were only 3 feet tall when I planted them but with the faithful application of HavenBrand Manure and Alfalfa tea these climbing roses grew by leaps and bounds!


Rev d'Or
Rev d’Or


Climbing rose 'Moonlight' (Kordes)
Climbing rose ‘Moonlight’ (Kordes)


Climbing rose 'Golden Gate' (Kordes)
Climbing rose ‘Golden Gate’ (Kordes)


Double arch, New Dawn and 'Laguna in background.
Double arch, ‘ New Dawn’ and ‘Laguna in background.


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Red climber growing up a trellis and spilling over my stone wall.



Climbing 'Iceburg' growing against a trellis.
Climbing ‘Iceburg’ growing against a trellis.


Thanks to vertical gardening I can enjoy my roses for years to come.

Sorry my furry friends, but I’ve outsmarted you this time….




May GBBD is Coming Up Roses…in my Garden

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‘Lady Ashe’ climbing Hybrid Tea



David Austin 'Benjamin Britten' shrub rose
David Austin ‘Benjamin Britten’ shrub rose





Miniature rose 'Diamond Eyes'
Miniature rose ‘Diamond Eyes’


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Climbing rose ‘Eden’
Climbing rose 'Eden'
Climbing rose ‘Eden’


'Distant Drums' shrub rose
‘Distant Drums’ shrub rose


Climbing rose 'Moonlight' (Kordes)
Climbing rose ‘Moonlight’ (Kordes)



Kordes Climbing rose 'Laguna'
Kordes Climbing rose ‘Laguna’
Climbing rose 'Golden Gate' (Kordes)
Climbing rose ‘Golden Gate’ (Kordes)



Floribunda rose 'Love Song'
Floribunda rose ‘Love Song’


Climbing Noisette rose 'Rev'd'Or'
Climbing Noisette rose ‘Rev’d’Or’


David Austin 'Evelyn'
David Austin ‘Evelyn’


'Compassion' climbing rose in full bloom
‘Compassion’ climbing rose in full bloom


'Marie Pavie' Polyantha rose
‘Marie Pavie’ Polyantha rose



Hybrid Tea 'Moonstone'
Hybrid Tea ‘Moonstone’



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Many thanks to Carol at May Dream Gardens for

hosting Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day

Carol at May Dreams Gardens

















Flirting in my Garden….my Fringe Tree

Nobody likes a show-off but in this case I’ll make an exception. All week my Fringe trees have been grabbing everybody’s attention with their showy creamy white blossoms flirting in the breeze- even glowing in the evening under the moonlight…

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 ~Fringe tree~

Size: 8-20 feet tall, 8-10 feet wide

It is found in USDA Hardiness Zones 4-9.

Bloom time: Flowers from April to May with masses of beautiful drooping white flowers

Exposure:  Full sun to partial shade; seems to perform well with some afternoon shade in my Zone 7b garden.

Excellent in a woodland garden

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A new addition to my garden this spring is Chionanthus retusus  ‘Tokyo Tower’  Chinese Fringe tree. Perfect for smaller gardens or tight spaces. I have mine planted at the edge of my ‘moonlight’ garden surrounded by my Annabelle and Snowflake hydrangeas, white camellia, Casa Blanca lilies and other white flowering shrubs and flowers.

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Alluring me into my garden…. the spring colors of my Japanese Maples and Conifers

Planting season has arrived in my zone 7b garden.  I’ve been working hard these last few weeks designing and planting the many flower beds and containers in my garden.

Of course, there is still so much to do (there always is) but this spring I’ve been drawn to the amazing colors that my Japanese maples and conifers are showcasing.  In order to capture their alluring brilliance, I decided to take a breather from gardening today so I could share a few photos with you.

I do believe their colors are simply amazing this spring….what do you think?


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  Above and below photos: Acer palm. ‘Baldsmith‘, Acer palm.”Ornatum‘, Acer palm. ‘Twombley Red‘, Acer palm. ‘Mikawa yatsubusa‘, Acer palm. ‘Beni otake’, Acer palm. ‘Oku Kuji Nishiki’, Cupressus macrocarpa ‘Saligna Aurea‘, Cupressus leylandi ‘Golconda‘, Picea abies ‘Frohburg‘, Picea omorika ‘Pendula Bruns’, Juniperus chinensis ‘Daubs Frosted‘, Weeping Blue Atlas cedar, Pinus strobus ‘Niagara Falls‘, Chamaecyparis nootkatensis.


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     Trees in the foreground are: Acer palm. ‘Shishigashira‘, FringeTree, Acer palm. ‘Watnong‘.


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    Acer palm. ‘Bloodgood‘, Cedrus deodara ‘Feelin Blue‘, Picea orientalis ‘Skylands’.


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     Large dissectum ‘Crimson Queen‘.


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     Acer palm. ‘Waterfall’, Acer palm. ‘Baldsmith‘ Acer palm. ‘Beni Otake’, Formosa azaleas.


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    Cedrus deodara ‘Sanders Blue‘, Chinese Snowball viburnum.


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    Acer palm. ‘Koto no ito‘, Acer palm. ‘Bloodgood’, Cedrus deodara ‘Feelin Blue’.

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Acer palm. ‘Koto no ito’ leafing out in my garden. ‘Koto no ito’ means ‘Harp Strings‘ given that name due to the very fine linearlobum leaves. This Japanese maple is a new addition to my garden. An upright graceful tree that I’m sure will become a favorite.


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Acer palm. ‘Twombley Red‘ keeps its red color even during the summer.

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 Acer palm. ‘Oku Kuji Nishiki‘, Formosa azalea.

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    Acer  palm. ‘Oku Kuji Nishiki’ is a lovely variegated JapMaple.

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 Above and below photos: Acer palm. ‘Red Feathers’.  The photo above is back-lit by the late afternoon sun giving ‘Red Feathers’ a glow. A collector’s specimen in my garden. Lovely.

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Acer palm. ‘Shishigashira‘ translates into lions head. It’s branches are covered in curly leaves. Another new addition to my garden. A fine specimen.


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 Acer palm. ‘Orange Dream’



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  Acer palm. ‘Beni otake‘, Acer palm.”Ornatum‘, Cupressus macrocarpa ‘Saligna Aurea‘, Weeping Blue Atlas cedar, Pinus strobus ‘Niagara Falls‘, Chamaecyparis nootkatensis , cedrus deodara ‘Snow Sprite, Tsuga Canadensis, Picea abies ‘Pusch‘.

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Well, I’ve given you a peak of just a few of the Japanese Maples and conifers that I grow in my garden. I have over 50 Japanese maples and well over a hundred conifers in my landscape. Yes, I am a Conehead’ and ‘Maplehead’. Perhaps sometime during the hot and humid dog days of summer, when I limit my time working in the garden, I’ll find the time to go through my photo catalog so I can designate a blog post just for identifying many of the other specimen conifers and maples I have in my landscape.

Till next time- Happy gardening!





Blooming now …..climbing rose ‘Don Juan’


In bloom right now in my garden is the lovely ‘Don Juan’ climber. I have several growing against the brick exterior of my home. Two are gracing the archways of my front entrance and the third is climbing up an exterior wall on the side of my home. All are just starting to show the beginnings of their spring flush. It’s taken three years of cane growth to get them to the point were I can espalier them against the house. Definitely worth the wait. I think this year ‘Don Juan’ will give me a dazzling show!


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Climbing rose    ~Don Juan~


Large flowered Climber


Growing Zones: USDA growing Zones 6b thru 9b

Mature Plant Height:  12 ft. to 14 ft.

Petal Count: 30-35 petals

Fragrance:  intense perfume

Bloom Time: Repeats, blooms in flushes throughout the season

Highlights: Sensational velvety crimson blossoms and dark green foliage. The flowers have a hybrid-tea form appearing both singly and in clusters. One of my absolute favorite red climbers for my Zone 7b garden.

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GBBD…A TuLiP SpRiNg FLiNG….in my Garden

My dazzling tulips are having their annual ‘Spring Fling’ in my garden.  I must admit, I wasn’t sure how many of the tulips I planted (see post here https://www.thegracefulgardener.com/?p=3336) would be participating in my ‘Spring Fling.’  Not to my surprise, the deer decided to have a party of their own this year by eating many of my tulip buds as their gourmet main course! (Note to self: Next year put out deer repellant in February not March.)

However, lucky for me I planted around 1200 tulips, 650 were gobbled up by the deer, but that still left me with several hundred to share with you. Even though my tulip blossoms are fleeting- many blooms just lasting a few weeks- it’s still something I look forward to every year in my garden.

Here’s a peek…..


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Many thanks to Carol at May Dream Gardens for

hosting Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day


Profiled by Author/Writer Rona Simmons: An Artful Gardener – Brenda Addington | Women @ Word




An Artful Gardener – Brenda Addington

  by rona simmons


A Discriminating Eye and a Garden Trowel

(An Essay by Rona Simmons)

I visit gardens when I travel, whether they are public gardens, private gardens, arboretums, nurseries (not the box stores but the old-fashioned kind, the ones owned by people with rough hands and dirt under their nails), garden exhibitions, or even local enthusiasts’ plant sales. These venues are marvelous places, full of beauty and inspiration and often a kindred, sometimes eccentric, spirit, or two, meandering about. Rarely do I leave without an idea to implement in my own garden.
As you might expect, I’m smarter now than when I first began my garden journeys.
At the outset, like other novices, I’d return from a foray with a new plant in hand and sink it into what I deemed to be its rightful place in the garden. With a minimum of effort (including those tiresome but no less important things like weeding, watering, pruning and fertilizing), a modicum of time, and a large dollop of good fortune, nature rewarded me when she chose with wondrous blooms.
My garden awakening came with the purchase of my third or fourth treasure. Suddenly I realized I had to take a step back and consider the larger picture—the canvas, you might say.
Did the color of the new rose, or camellia, or azalea compliment the established ones? Would they bloom at the same time, exploding in one single burst of riotous color but leaving me with nothing but dried leaves and bare boughs in the long winter months ahead? Would they surprise me with something new each time I ventured into the garden, heralding the circle of seasons? Was the arrangement defying the principles of design or did it adhere to the tyranny of triangles?
Sinking further into my self-imposed form of madness, I began to obsess over textures, scents, and associations. Was there variety in my garden—magnolias with their wide, glossy leaves and boughs studded with lemon-scented summer flowers that spoke of the old south as well as pines, three and five-needled cultivars with cones to collect and toss on a winter night’s fire? Were there pathways through my garden that drew the visitor’s eye, teasing them to take a first step then another, tantalizing and engaging them?
I came to realize that I wasn’t merely gardening. I was creating a work of art–a painting on a canvas of earth, a short story in colors and textures and living things. For inspiration, I sought role models from a different sort of gardener, those with a discriminating eye and experience with a trowel. Artists who garden.



Fortunately, I have had the privilege to come to know one particularly artful gardener, Brenda Addington. Brenda approaches her garden as an artist first. She brings to it both an inherited sense of grace and craft from her father, a highly skilled artisan in another media, and her own eye for color and line.

She is not one to sit inside and admire her garden through the window. I know. On one of the coldest days of the year, I found her planting a few of the thousands of bulbs she had special ordered, just the right colors for just the right spaces. In the spring, if she’s not tending to the dozens of containers that accent her garden, she’s photographing them for her website or blog. And, in the fall, she’s likely to be constructing a cascade of pumpkins on the stairs leading from her front door to her garden.


Brenda’s garden embodies all of the aspects of an artful garden. It is a delight for the senses. Her colors flow, huge white blooming Annabelle hydrangeas yield to beds of pink Angelique then mutate again to a stand of mauve tulips. Her textures weave together seamlessly—a burnished iron frog sits above delicate tendrils of a Mandevilla vine in one corner, peach-colored roses soften the blue needles of a deodar cedar in another, and, in a far recess, a stone bridge carves a path to the graceful threads of a lime-green conifer.


Try as I might, my garden just never quite measures up. Thankfully, Brenda does not live too far away allowing me the opportunity from time to time to view what she has created and see where I’ve gone wrong.

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Note: All photos courtesy of Brenda Addington.

via An Artful Gardener – Brenda Addington | Women @ Word.

My ‘Fantastic Foliage’ Container–a Finalist winner for Fine Gardening’s 2012 Container Design Challenge….


For the second year in a row, one of my containers has been a finalist in Fine Gardening’s – ‘Fantastic Foliage’  2012 Container Design Challenge.

Please check out my container and many other beautiful containers created by other finalists, as well as, the winner in Fine Gardening’s May/June 2013 issue .



My container selected as finalist for Fine Gardening's 2012 Container Design Challenge 'Fantastic Foliage' .
My container selected as finalist for Fine Gardening’s 2012 Container Design Challenge ‘Fantastic Foliage’ .


Here’s more of my containers :  https://www.thegracefulgardener.com/?p=2854