As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases from amazon.com

More from Chad and Seyra in Connecticut


We’re visiting with Chad and Seyra Hammond in Woodbury, Connecticut, today. We stopped by their beautiful garden last week (Chad and Seyra’s Garden), and I’m happy to be back there today. They love growing and collecting unusual plants, and the result is a beautiful and fascinating garden.

small garden pond with aquatic plantsWe started water gardening after the koi pond proved too emotionally taxing for us. (Many of you know the heartache of losing your fish to predators.) So now we grow water lilies (Nymphaea species and hybrids) and lotus (Nelumbo nucifera, Zones 5–10) . We fertilize them with pond tabs every couple of weeks in the summer and divide them every three to four years. They survive the winter in the pond with no extra protection. I would consider them very low maintenance except that you do have to get wet now and then, and lifting waterlogged pots full of clay and roots can be challenging. Keeping the pots small and using lightweight media instead of clay would probably help if I got around to taking my own advice.

ornamental grass around yellow flowersWe love visiting gardens wherever we go. Many years ago I saw a combination of Schizachyrium scoparium (Zones 3–9) and Rudbeckia triloba (Zones 4–8) at the National Arboretum in Washington, D.C., that I could never get out of my head. It manifested itself here in our garden many years later. I love it so much I think I’ll always have some iteration of it. This photo shows Schizycharium scoparium ‘Standing Ovation’ and Helianthus salicifolius (Zones 4–9) in the foreground, and the fall colors of Viburnum nudum ‘Brandywine’ (Zones 5–9) pick up the pink tones of the grass.

close up of purple and white flowersWe have started collecting primulas also. There are so many species and variations within the species. Many are easy to grow from seed and spread well in the right conditions. These dainty little blooms are Primula japonica (Zones 4–8), with Tiarella cordifolia (Zones 4–9), growing in a shady, moist bed. Both spread eagerly and create exuberant displays in spring. I have been spreading them around any other hospitable patches of land I come across because I can’t get enough of these two together.

large group of potted begonias on a patioAs you can tell, we have many plant addictions. Begonias are one of them. They seem to thrive in the bright shade of the patio on the north side of the house. Their endless leaf shapes, textures, and colors along with their ease of propagation makes them so collectible. This photo includes Begonia luxurians and B. parviflora, and the hybrids ‘Pigskin,’ ‘Marmaduke,’ ‘Connie Boswell,’ ‘Little Brother Montgomery’ (Zones 9–11 or grown as annuals or houseplants), and some unnamed varieties.

gardener holding up a large begoniaThese begonias, along with about a million other plants, need to come inside in October during the Great Plant Migration. Here is Chad, the proud plant dad, carrying them down to the basement for their long winter’s nap. He is 6 ft. 4 in. for scale.

close up of various different foliageHere is a favorite plant combination of mine that we can take no credit for. This is Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Little Honey’ (Zones 5–9), Impatiens omeiana (Zones 6–9), and Lobelia cardinalis ‘Black Truffle’ (Zones 3–9).

small variegated tree at the edge of the landscapeYet another plant addiction of ours is redbuds, particularly the ones with colorful foliage. We love their big heart-shaped leaves. It just so happens that the species is native to much of the country, offers flowers for pollinators in early spring, and even has a bit of fall color if you’re lucky. Our favorites include Cercis canadensis ‘Alley Cat’ (Zones 4–8; pictured), which is a bright beacon in the dark woods. To the left is Calycanthus floridus ‘Burgundy Spice’ (Zones 4–9).

close up of Cercis Rising Sun foliageI am so enamored by the freckles on Cercis ‘Rising Sun’.

close up of snow on a treeHere are some leaves of Cercis ‘Ruby Falls’ frosted by an early October snowfall.

border bed in fall with foliage and light peach flowersOne annual we love for adding bulk and interest to understocked and boring borders is Ricinus communis ‘New Zealand Purple’ (Zones 9–11 or as an annual) on the left. Panicum virgatum ‘Northwind’ (Zones 5–9) and Chrysanthemum ‘Rustic Glow’ (Zones 5–9) are in the foreground.

close up of lady slipper orchidYes, conventional wisdom says to leave the lady slipper orchids to the experts. They are expensive and finicky. But you won’t know until you try. And we just had to try. This is a Cypripedium japonicum (Zones 4–7) we planted in the woods in the native soil with wood-chip mulch about three years ago. This spring we had two blooms! During the week or so it was in bloom, you better believe I was out there gawking every moment I could. And it is a good thing I soaked it in as much as I did. The drought was terrible this year, and the foliage withered away in late summer despite our attempts at watering. We won’t know until spring if we’ve lost it for good or if it just decided to go dormant early. Wish us luck. We cannot wait to find out if this one will be coming back.

To see more of this garden, visit their instagram: @s2szahme

 

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.

Have a mobile phone? Tag your photos on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with #FineGardening!

Do you receive the GPOD by email yet? Sign up here.



We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Trendy Home Site
Logo
Enable registration in settings - general
Compare items
  • Total (0)
Compare
0
Shopping cart