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2023 Home Garden Tours

Do you love to go on home garden tours? I do! I was privileged to participate in a garden tour with my local master gardener extension. Garden tours are a fun way to get ideas for your own gardens or see a plant that you ‘need’ to add to your gardens. Garden tours are also a great way to learn about different aspects of gardening.

As an added bonus we had 8×10 before pictures available so visitors could see the changes we have made during the almost 7 years that we have lived here. I will share links to the makeover posts as we go along, so you can check those out if you want to.

My neighbor’s gardens were included in the tours and she has given me permission to share some pictures of her gardens as well. Thanks, neighbor!

This is a picture-heavy post with just a bit of explanation of each picture and the names of the plants included in the pictures. Grab your beverage of choice, and join me as I share these virtual home garden tours. 

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Entry Gardens

As visitors walked up the driveway they were greeted by all the cheery blooms in the flower bed that is adjacent to the driveway. The flowers in this bed include both perennials (shasta daisies, black-eyed Susans, little pleasures daylilies, south seas daylilies, veronica, etc.) and annuals (marigolds and vinca).

If you are interested, you can find this garden makeover here.

The little girl garden statue at the end of this flower bed can be found here.

Flower bed with shasta daisies, black-eyed Susans, daylilies, vinca and marigolds

Next is the entry garden that is between our front and side doors. This flower bed is one of my favorite 3-season gardens meaning there are perennials blooming from spring through fall. The link above is to our signature course on designing such a flower bed.

I like to add in annuals too and change those up from year-to-year. The flowers that are blooming in the entry garden include an array of perennials (shasta daisies, coneflowers, knautia, salvia, coreopsis and daylilies) and annuals (alyssum, marigolds, vinca and profusion zinnias).

Colorful flower garden with a small water fountain as a focal point.

Shade Garden Area

Let’s head around to the backyard to an area I refer to as hosta hill. We have had to remove diseased trees and have lost much of our shade. Part of this area is in shade and part of it gets too much sun for the hostas to be completely happy, so hosta hill is up for some reworking.

As a side note, we have been experiencing drought conditions and you will see lots of very sad, dead grass. We like to keep it real here, so no apologies.

There are many different varieties of hostas and for added color, I like to fill in with coleus and impatiens. The tall dark red shrub along the fence is chokecherry and the tiny tree in the middle is serviceberry. The hubs added the lattice work panel this year to cover the utility boxes in the corner. To see the initial makeover of hosta hill, check out this article when you’ve finished up here.

A shade garden on a slope.

Below is a closer look at the wheelbarrow planter full of coleus, calla lilies, impatiens and creeping Jenny. The panicle hydrangea is the Proven Winners Quickfire Fab variety. It will be fun to watch the color change as the season progresses.

A wheelbarrow used as a planter for colorful flowers in a part shade garden.

The next area is sort of rough due to mulberry stains on plants and too much sun for the hostas, but we all have those areas. To shift the focus away from the ugly, I like to add cute touches like the planter of caladium, new guinea impatiens and ivy with the birdhouse.

Terracotta planter with caladium plants and a birdhouse.

Ideas for Garden Art

Along the back fence is about the only flat area in our backyard, so I like to add little vignettes using some upcycled vintage finds. If you like decorating your gardens like this too, be sure to check out the highlighted post above when you’ve finished up here.

This is an area that used to be shady that is now full sun, so there are lots of new plants, including coreopsis, yarrow, marigolds and others. Again, using garden art is a great way to take the focus off of an area that doesn’t have many blooms.

Vignette in a flower garden with a vintage gate, antique milk can and basket of plants.

I enjoy using old chairs in the garden. It’s a great way to add character and charm. The rustic planter box was a recent flea market find. It’s filled with lantana and wire vine.

Bright pink chair in a garden with a planter of flowers on the seat and a 'garden tours' sign on the back.

Adding shepherds hooks to your flower planters is a fun way to add instant character to your planters. Finish out the look by hanging a small watering can or solar lantern from the hook. The galvanized planter in the image below is full of colorful tuberous begonias.

Galvanized bucket with bright colored begonias and a yellow watering can on a stake.

It’s easy to find old vintage bicycles and they can add tons of personality to your gardens. I just use zip ties to hold a wicker basket to the handlebar, line it with plastic, fill it with potting mix and plant flowers. The impatiens and ivy weren’t as full as I would have liked for the tour, but they will fill out as summer progresses. The galvanized bucket includes coleus, impatiens and some hidden browalia.

Old red bicycle with flowers planted in the basket.

Potting Shed

Now let’s walk across the crunchy, lumpy backyard to visit the potting shed. It’s not really a potting shed, but the sign was cute and adds character to the outside of my garden storage shed. I love to decorate the outside of this shed, but I’ll let you in on a little secret… the inside is a mess. Some day maybe it will be a cute she shed.

The bright blue flowers in the watering can on the bench are browalia. They are one of my favorite shade annuals, but they are difficult to find.

The outside of a potting shed with a sign and various pots of flowers and a bench.

Around the corner is our raised garden bed area. The galvanized steel raised beds are Mr. Ironstone brand and you can find different varieties here. I love them and so do the plants growing in them.

The cutting garden is full of lisianthus (the bright pink flowers), celosia, snapdragons, calendula and a few others. If you are interested in learning more about growing your own cut flower garden, check out this article when you have a few minutes.

Garden with galvanized steel raised beds.

Flower Garden on a Slope

On the east side of our backyard is a perennial garden on a slope. It has undergone quite the transformation during the almost 7 years we have lived here. Because of the difficulty of maintaining this flower garden, I’m working to make it a lower maintenance garden by adding in various shrubs.

In the picture below you will see coneflowers, balloon flowers, fooled me daylilies, bee balm, cranesbill and Laura phlox.

Colorful perennial flower garden.A few tips from the picture below: use fence panels to hold up floppy plants. The little bell garden stake was really ugly and faded out. Spray paint is a great way to refresh garden art pieces.

Colorful perennial flower garden.

Perennials in the picture below include Shasta daisies, black-eyed Susan, coneflowers, balloon flowers and campanula. I like to pop annual flowers into my perennial beds to keep the color going all summer and into fall. The annual flowers are New Guinea impatiens, zonal geraniums and marigolds.

Colorful perennial garden with small bunny statues.

These chippy faux birdhouse stakes have found a place in my garden for many years. I can’t even remember where I initially purchased them, but they would be easy to replicate.

Faux birdhouse stakes surrounded by coneflowers.

Sometimes flowers will just plant themselves wherever they wish. Case in point, the coneflowers in this grouping with hydrangeas and oriental lilies. Other than the coneflowers trying to block out the oriental lilies, it works and is a pretty little group.

Hydrangeas, coneflowers and oriental lilies in a flower garden.

Next, we enter a part of the gardens that were completed in 2020. Part of this area is shade and part is full sun. It’s one of my favorite places to take a break. You can learn more about the makeover of this area here.

Gravel path lined with field stones in a garden.

If you’re lucky you can find the cutest handmade garden art items on Facebook Marketplace. That’s where I found the adorable wood gnomes, handmade by an older gentleman in a neighboring suburb. The hostas in this picture include, elegans, Maui buttercup, cathedral windows, paradigm and ginko Craig.

3 wood gnomes in a shade garden

The hubs makes the cute faux birdhouse stakes and they look cute anywhere I put them. He’s working on a tutorial that I can share here on the website soon. Perennials here are Herman’s pride, frosted ribbons hosta, rainbow’s end hosta, wrinkle in time hosta and lungwort.

3 faux birdhouse stakes in a shade garden.

In the same garden area is another creation of hubs – a bench made from a large log slice. I call it the ogre bench.

Hosta garden with a rustic bench made from a log slice.

Although these pictures were just some of the highlights of my gardens, it was fun to be able to share them with you. There are many, many more tips and ideas here at Gingham Gardens. Get all the tips and ideas by subscribing to our weekly newsletter by completing the form below.

Neighbor’s Garden Tour Highlights

I’ve always wanted a neighbor that liked to garden and I finally have one. A lot of our gardening styles are the same and it’s fun to trade ideas. She is very creative and has a knack for putting together the most charming vignettes. I call her gardens – Pinterest on steroids! 

As guests started the tour in the front yard, they were greeted with this adorable entry garden. Don’t you just love the staged garden bench?

Entry flower garden

Here is a closeup of the hanging galvanized planter with impatiens spilling out. 

Impatiens flowers spilling out of a hanging galvanized planter.

More galvanized bucket planters in a grouping with an old whiskey jug.

Grouping of galvanized flower planters and a whiskey jug.

I believe the next picture is an antique cream separator. Whatever it is, it makes an interesting focal point used as a planter. Plants here include forget-me-nots, coreopsis and yarrow. The flowers in the planter are scaevola.

Antique cream separator used in a flower garden.Cute fairy garden planters.

Container flower gardens with fairies

A vintage cast iron kettle turned on it’s side and used as a planter. Such a cute idea! The momma hen and her chicks can be purchased here.

Large cast iron kettle turned on it's side and used as a planter.

I don’t know what it is about this next picture, there are no flowers, but it spoke to me. It’s just so simple and charming.

Antique junk in a garden

I leave you with this adorable, rustic playhouse that our neighbors built for their grandchildren. It’s just full of creativity and personality. Our grandchildren love it too.

Rustic playhouse in a garden.

I hope you enjoyed these home garden tours and are leaving today with lots of ideas swirling around in your head. Come back soon for more flower garden ideas and tips.

Happy gardening,

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  1. Love the galvanized tub with the inpatients spilling from it! Can you tell us how she did that? Is there soil just in the bucket, or is there also a mound of soil below, that more inpatients are planted in? I have galvanized tub and a shepherds hook, and I can’t wait to copy this!!!! Thank you

    1. Hi Norma – thanks for stopping by Gingham Gardens. The galvanized bucket is hung on a short shepherd’s hook and then soil is piled up to stabilize the bucket. Next soil is mounded and flowers are planted. When watering, water very slowly so the water doesn’t run down the mound. Once the plants fill in, it is easier to maintain. Good luck and happy gardening, Joanna

  2. Shepherds crooks are very usefull. I hang wind chimes on them. In the veggies garden, rotate things to scare birds. It has worked really well in the strawberry patch. Aluminum pie pans blow nicely in the wind.
    Joy in Sammamish

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