Welcome to my zone 9 garden. My roots are deeply planted in the sandy soil of sub-tropical central Florida, where the summers are long and hot, but the rest of the year is paradise!

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Closer Look

Here's the closer look . . . that I promised . . . of the picture-perfect landscape beds leading up to the Hotel Iroquois on Mackinac Island, Michigan. This space is no longer than . . . maybe 25 feet and you can get a good feel for the width . . . but you'll be amazed at the variety of plants it packs into this small space.

It has a nice back drop of green on the left side and a couple of medium-sized trees on the right to frame it all.

It all starts with a welcome sign at the very front. You can already get a good feel for how they intermingle a number of different plant varieties and colors. The colors seem to be repeated down the line . . . white, dark red, and green.  A row of higher growing plants fill out the back of the bed . . . hydrangeas, alocasias and some other green shrubs.

Flipping over to the left side this colorful combination shows off nicely in front of the evergreen trees. So many different varieties packed into one small space.

Here I see some hostas hidden in the back, coleus, impatiens and some more Autumn Joy sedum up front.

Some of the plants I can identify are more of the sun-tolerant impatiens, hostas, sedum, petunias and sweet potato vines. I really like this layered look with the flat stone.

Here's a little higher stone wall with a beautiful color combination of flowers. The buds on the dark leaved plant with the yellow flowers resemble peony buds but I'm not familiar with the plant. It is a stunning color especially when contrasted with the yellow flowers. 

Here's a little closer look. The black and chartreuse leaves next to each other are absolutely fabulous!

Another beautiful spot that contains impatiens, elephant ears (2 different varieties) a grass that grows in water, lilies and petunias.

The master behind this piece of artwork definitely has a green thumb and a talent for combining colors, textures, shapes and sizes.

Love how the chartreuse and black foliage play off each other and then add the beautiful soft pink flowers and WOW...it's gorgeous! When you think it couldn't get any better . . . take a look at that soft fluffy grass at the base of the pink flowering plant.

A combination of ornamental grasses look beautiful against the white bark of the birch tree. So much color in this photo with mostly foliage.

A  crisp and traditional look with simple elements - a white fence, green plants, stone wall, impatiens.

Another birch tree simply planted with two varieties of fern, two different large-leafed plants and impatiens. This gardener knows how to make impatiens sparkle.

The detail is incredible. The dark color in the coleus is picking up the dark color of the stems of the alocasia. Nice combination of leaf shapes - large, spiky, soft and rounded. All it takes is 3 plants to create such an eye-pleasing look. This would make a great container combination. 

Great example of the varying heights in this border and as you can see the bed is not very wide at all.

There are so many lessons to be learned from these beautiful garden borders. I know I'll be studying these plant combinations over and over, and in the future I'll be definitely looking at my own beds from different angles to see if I can accomplish something even 1/10th as beautiful as this. 

Hope you enjoyed a close-up look at this magnificent garden space.


FlowerLady said...

This was a fantastic close up view of these lovely gardens.

Very colorful and inspiring.

Hope you are keeping dry.


Dawn said...

Simply Gorgeous Photos Susan!
I wish I had as much as a handle on the weeds in my backyard as the mastermind behind those planter beds.
A visual treat for the eyes.
You've given me a new "standard" to aspire to.

africanaussie said...

Oh those borders are stunning - thank you for sharing that - definitely a lot of great ideas there Susan!

Missy said...

It's so beautiful. That is certainly a garden to learn from as well as enjoy. I agree. A lot of thought has gone into the plant combinations to achieve that beauty.

Lisa @ akawest said...

How beautiful!

Leslie said...

What a cool post, Susan. It was neat to look at this garden so carefully and try to figure out what makes it work. My own yard is looking so dull and shaggy and August-y right now. I can't wait 'til planting season so I can change things up!

Nanette said...

Stunning and spectacular. Who would ever want to leave such a lovely garden? I was very interested to see many of the same plants that we use in Florida used in this garden in Michigan (at least in the summer. Definitely a post to bookmark for future reference for those of us who are color-blind and design-illiterate! Thanks for sharing, Susan.

Floridagirl said...

There are a lot of great ideas here. Love that container with the coleus spilling out. Looks like an absolutely beautiful place!

David said...

That's one of the most wonderful 25 feet of gardening in the plant kingdom! Thanks for sharing such a beautiful place, Susan.

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