In general, I just don’t get rock gardens. They leave me baffled. Perhaps this is because I come from a region of deep soil but few rocks. (Or maybe it’s just jealousy – sour rocks?)
Whichever. Even with all the rocks, I found the Ft. Collins garden of Carol and Randy Shinn to be sumptuous and exciting.
Much of this garden was not a traditional rock garden but rather a crevice garden, with flat stones pushed down vertically into the soil. To me this has a more dynamic look, suggesting stone thrusting upward with the collision of miniature tectonic plates.
Then there are the generous use of richly-colored rock garden plants, like the rose-colored Lychnis above.
These, however, are mixed with luscious cottage garden favorites. Oh, the Irises – the Irises!
Not to mention the Peonies.
And the Poppies.
Just because you have a lot of rocks doesn’t mean you have to buy into a whole austerity program.
I like the ground-covering ‘Biokovo’ Geraniums (Geranium x cantabrigiense) in the lower right corner with a nice little Salvia on the other side of the rock. And sure, the miniature conifers provide a nice contrast to all the bright colors.
OK, here people are heading into the Back Garden. Nice arbor!
The Back Garden is full of contrasts. There is more rock garden but also a shady corner for contemplative moments. Note the faucet water fountain to the left.
A brick path leads to a vegetable garden.
Sweet little succulents.
I love this tiny Clematis.
Here’s the vegetable garden. Those pea vines look very content.
Many thanks to the Shinns for opening their garden to the flingers, and showing us another side of rock gardens.
That is a fantastic rock garden, inspirational for us all!
Inspirational is a good word. For a private home garden, it was amazing.
Aside from having to recover from “sour rocks,” I found this to be another warming escape from the here and now. What a beautiful garden world!
Were these rocks park of the landscape or were they landscaped in for the garden effect?
They were purchased, I’m pretty sure.
Fabulous and illustrates that there are all different kinds of way to garden. Vive la difference!
This is lovely. I can rarely put my shovel in the ground and not hit a rock. It makes me wonder how they ever farmed this land, though I know all the topsoil was removed before building here. I have to laugh at the per pound prices for rocks at the local nursery. Pay for rocks? No way.
What part of Michigan do you live in? The only part of the state that I thought was really rocky was the UP.
Haha–sour rocks! Great set of shots. I think that garden is gorgeous, glad you profile it, rocks notwithstanding.
I’ll admit the rocks are part of its charm.
Carol and Randy have a beautiful rock garden, Jason. Thank you for sharing the views!
I am not always keen on rock gardens either, but this is a lovely one. That planting makes all the difference.
Agreed. The blooms are really enchanting.
When a rock garden has this many plants how can you not like it. Gorgeous.
Quite some rock garden
This is one of the most interesting rock gardens I have ever seen..and very well planned plants as well. I’m inspired to try more rocks in our garden. Thanks for the tour Jason & Judy.
You’re welcome. I agree it may be the most appealing rock garden I have ever seen.
That’s a well done rock garden and very pretty. I don’t mind rock gardens as long as I don’t have to weed them. The various levels and no place to kneel (usually) makes them difficult to care for.
Never thought about the kneeling – that could be a problem.
I loved everything that was happening in this garden!
It was pretty great.
This is a spectacular design, and beautifully planted.
Yes, isn’t it?
This is a beautiful garden and well designed. I have a rock garden mulched with pebbles. It started out as a normal garden with mulch, but try as hard as i could, the only thing that kept the cats from doing their business in it was to pebble and rock it. Now that I have all the neighbours love and yes I do too.
The thought of cats relieving themselves in my garden beds is very unappealing. Glad that the pebbles and rocks work with the cats, and are beautiful also.
Thanks Jason, we are really glad they work too – believe me. I like cats and used to have a few as pets when I was younger. As I got older we kept dogs and currently have a Border Collie. Cats can be extremely dangerous when it comes to wildlife and they do like to roam and do their business in other people yards.
Awesome tour! Thanks for sharing!
This is a really lovely garden. Those rocks look great sticking up out of the ground like that. And the fountain is an ingenious way to make a boundary fence look good. I could feel at home in that garden, sitting on the bench in the shade! Thanks for sharing. 🙂
The bench is very inviting.
Lovely. I agree the verticality of the rock placement is interesting. Those pink poppies and the irises are wonderful.
Luscious is the word that came to mind for the poppies and irises.
Oh, what a delightful garden!xxx
That is quite some garden, on many levels (no pun intended!) It’s lovely. Hmmm, I wonder if I could legitimately rename my pebble-and-stone-infested clay soil borders and beds as a “stone garden”, lol.
I wouldn’t stand in your way. You could start a new trend!
The plant material is exquisite . . . but the rock? I don’t get it either. (No sour rocks.) Boulder Creek is right up the highway from here. As the name suggests, there are plenty of boulders there from a mix of all the geology that crashes together (in very slow motion) there. My garden lacks the mix, but not the quantity. Rocks of one kind or another are common in much of California, even in the alluvial valleys.
It’s a mountainous state, and I suppose the rocks must fall into the valleys.
Yes, and ever region is unique. There is a granite ‘cap’ above Boulder Creek that is ‘related’ to the Farallon Islands. Otherwise most of what is on this side of the San Andreas Fault is sedimentary rock that migrated from Central America. I don’t know how the granite got here.