Hello! My name is Renee and I live in Memphis, Tennessee. I wanted to share my back garden in four seasons as well as “before” pictures. I started working on this area of my garden in early 2020; the “before” pictures are from February 2020. Every bit of this I did myself.

When I started I had five mature trees and an otherwise clean slate to work with. My garden is roughly five times longer than it is wide, so I decided to create a curved grass path going around the far corner. I started with adding evergreens for structure and a few ornamental trees for focal points. I built around the two existing mature pink dogwood trees (Cornus florida, Zones 5–9) in order to really highlight them, because they’re beautiful in every season. Since then I’ve added layers of shrubs and perennials based on variation of height, texture, and color. I’ve also tried to add interest for every season. I like to use repetition of color and texture in my garden to draw the eye down the path. Blue is easily my favorite color, so I use it often throughout my garden to add contrast and interest. In several areas I’ve used pots to place plants that will eventually need to be moved to make room for the shrubs and trees as they mature.

It’s hard to believe it’s only been three growing seasons since I started this transformation. I’m excited to watch my garden grow and mature through the years.

“Before” picture, taken in February 2020

another view of the garden before transformationAnother view from before the garden transformation—pretty much a clean slate to be sure!

new garden in springFast-forward just two years to April 2022 and wow! It is a garden now. The pink dogwoods and red foliage from Japanese maples (Acer palmatum, Zones 5–9) bring a lot of color to the spring scene.

new garden in summerThe lushness of summer

new garden in fallIn fall the dogwoods and maples show off their colored leaves

new garden in winterAnd in a winter snowfall, the bones of the garden still look great, full of promise for the seasons ahead.


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