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Gardening

A Photo Journey Through the Seasons of 2022

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Greetings from a North Georgia Zone 7 garden. I’m Bonnie Plikaytis. After looking through my 2022 garden photos, I selected a few to share. Hope you enjoy them!

Edgeworthia chrysantha (Zones 7–10), commonly known as paperbush, blooms from late February to early April before its new leaves emerge. The creamy white-and-yellow fragrant flowers are a welcome sight when most of the garden is still dormant.

small tree starting to bloom with pink flowers in springAs winter turns to spring, the garden awakens from its slumber. This weeping redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Traveller’, Zones 6–9) echoes the color of the blossoms of the ‘Radiance’ rhododendrons (Zones 6a–9b).

small shrub with pink flowers with chartreuse grass behindIn April the flowers of Rhododendron ‘Temple Bells’ (Zones 5a–7) have the shape of pink bells—hence the name. Variegated sweet flag (Acorus gramineus ‘Ogon’, Zones 5–10) provides a backdrop of a grassy golden river through the garden boulders.

close up of small plant with tiny pink flowersThe mid-April morning light intensifies the colors of Saxifraga × geum ‘Dentata’ and highlights its delicate blooms (Zones 6–9).

small evergreen shrub with pink flowersA new addition to the garden in 2021 was Illicium floridanum ‘Swamp Hobbit’ (Areas 6–9). It is a low-growing, deer resistant evergreen shrub with lovely red blooms in the spring. This shrub first came to my attention while reading Fine Gardening issue 202. It can be difficult to find in the nursery trade, but I was fortunate to purchase it at the Atlanta Botanical Garden’s 2021 fall sale.

ferns with a plant that has red-tipped leavesLooking at our garden, it becomes obvious that I am drawn to plants with red accents. Fine Gardening issue 193 sent me on a search for Crimson Fans mukdenia (Mukdenia rossii ‘Karasuba’, Zones 4–8). It took a while, so when I found it at a local nursery last year, I immediately bought three plants. It has not disappointed! The leaves emerge bright green, then develop stunning red edges that last through summer. In this photo it is paired with tassel fern (Polystichum polyblepharum, Areas 6–8).

tiny yellow tree growing in a containerSpring and fall plant sales are wonderful places to find specimen plants. This fall at a Master Gardeners expo I found a ‘Gnome’ dwarf ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba ‘Gnome’, Zones 4–8). Ginkgo is an ancient deciduous conifer and is sometimes called the maidenhair tree due to its unique fan-shaped leaves that resemble a maidenhair fern frond. The intense golden-yellow fall leaf color was dazzling this year.

A wonderful thing about living in a woodland community is the rich diversity of native trees and plants. This photo taken in November captures the intense fall colors of the Japanese maples (Acer palmatum, Zones 5–9) nestled with a large maple native to our property.

forest scene in fall cast in a pink lightSometimes nature provides dramatic lighting for the forest. The gorgeous pink hue seen in this fall photo only lasted for an instant as the rising sun’s light bounced off the clouds on the horizon.

dog in the gardenIn December the Rohdea japonica (Zones 6–10) an evergreen, deer-resistant, shade-loving plant, adds a bit of Christmas cheer to the garden with its bright red berries.

My canine gardening companion, Cody, and I wish you many moments of peace in your garden during 2023.

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.

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