slideshow: june 7 garden-tour

succulent potRECIPE FOR A GARDEN TOUR: Shop ahead, then carefully clean and prep all ingredients and surfaces. Preset sky for sunshine; turn humidity and heat to low. Add the zest of one jumbo pop-up nursery to the driveway. Open gates, and layer on just enough visitors. Yield: A successful June 7 Garden Conservancy Open Day. The highlights:

plant saleFirst, giant thanks to Broken Arrow Nursery for creating the pop-up shop (above–before plant-mad shoppers bought three-quarters of it!); and to Laura Palmer of the Garden Conservancy for helping me get 350ish visitors acclimated–and for managing the national network of several hundred private gardens who open in 30-plus states each year, in the Conservancy’s Open Days program. I’m proud to have participate for about 18 years of the 20 they have been doing it (and am open again August 16 and September 20 this year).

Thanks also to Carol Gracie, whose spring wildflower lecture down the road at the local church was a big hit.

I can’t really capture the in-person experience of touring my hilly, 2.3-acre place for you here, so instead I try to show what people asked about, in the slideshow below. Things like the ultra-fragrant and chaming flowers of the American fringe tree (Chionanthus virginicus, below) that they found along the way on their walkabouts.

male flowers chionanthus virginicusopen day slideshow

HOW THE SLIDESHOW WORKS: Simply hover your cursor over the right side of the first image, and an arrow for navigation will display; use it to move from slide to slide. Note: A few are vertical images (you can tell which by the shape of the thumbnail), so even better with those is to click on the photo, and it will pop up full size on your screen, with its caption beneath. You can also watch the whole slideshow by clicking on the first image, and popping it up onto your screen, and navigate slide to slide from there.

  1. G. A. says:

    Could not make it over, but, the slide show is fantastic. A keeper. The what-is-its are beautifully displayed & explained. Hopefully, help with all that energy required on the “what-is-it” ? 350ish times!

    Happy birthday

  2. endless mtns edna says:

    Happy birthday and I hope you enjoyed your pancakes they are one of my faves also just like you are

  3. Jackie P. says:

    I enjoyed the slideshow — could have watched 30 more frames. Lovely and creative garden. Full of color, texture and interesting compositions. Thank you.

    Birthday greetings.

  4. viqueen says:

    Rich with variety and color. Completely delightful. A big happy 60th to you!….. I’ll be joining you in a couple months. ;-)

  5. Benita says:

    Happy Birthday, Margaret!

    Your website gives me great joy and inspiration and so I wish the same for you as you begin this new decade and for decades after that.


    Benita from Belllingham who ie turning

  6. Tom says:

    Love your sense of design. Would like some suggestions if possible for a mass planting of bearded irises. An area about 20×100 would be divided into sections with grass between them for walking. Was thinking four 6×45 beds with the edges planted in annuals surrounding the irises would be nice. Immortality would make up the bulk of the iris plantings and not yet sure what would make up the remainder. Are there too many limitations for suggestions? Suggestions in the way of other colors for the iris and maybe additional companion plant material.

    Impressed with the diversity of your plant material and how everything is arranged. I have one plant started from seed you don’t see to often-Stephanotis, growing on a trellis structure in the corner of the living room and finally after six years getting ready to bloom. Looks like it’ll worth the wait.

    Hope your birthday was special.


  7. June says:

    So enjoyed the wonderful slide show! My dream would be to see your garden in real life…..it is so beautifully laid out and full of such unusual plants.
    I’m looking forward to revisiting your slides to make note of plants for my wish list. Thank you for sharing the names of your treasures.
    And a very happy birthday! Gardening keeps you young.

    June (turned 77 on June 4th)

  8. linda williams says:

    Absolutely lovely! I read your books over & over. So inspirational! Digging in the soil is my bliss in zone 7b. Lots of clay but love the organic method.

  9. Brigitte says:

    ….soo waiting for photos from your August garden tour ( considering my carbon footprint, your garden is just ‘out of reach’ )

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