Garden Tour: Heather Benton from New House New Home

Friday, August 01, 2014

I'm really excited to share with you the first official Blogger Garden Tour: Heather Benton from New House New Home.

Heather is a Canadian girl who spent most of her life in the big city. Three years ago, her husband took a job in a small town and life changed when Heather retired from a stressful job and moved away from family and friends. But she got to retire and spend her time in the garden, cooking and renovating their 1935 Tudor home. According to Heather, she's domestically obsessed and blogging about it!

And now for the beautiful garden tour!

Welcome to my garden.....We took over this garden three years ago after moving to a small town in SW Ontario. My previous garden had been a "concrete jungle" as the backyard was mostly pool, so I focussed mainly on growing things in pots and small spaces.

Lisgar house
This is the front of our 1935 Tudor in the spring. The saucer magnolia (on the right) is my pride and joy.

But this property had a big yard with lots of possibilities. So we set out creating our own version of an English cottage garden, complete with veggie patch and perennial borders.

favourite flowers
From top left: Easter lily, ghost fern, saucer magnolia, "bowl of beauty" peony, helopsis, "raspberry ice" heuchera, David Austen rose, double tiger lily, "sweet autumn" clematis

Along the way, I've blogged about it with the main purpose to share it with my friends and family "back home."

perennial border back of garden
Back perennial border with the newly built deck in the background.

We've accomplished a lot in the three summers we've been here....a raised vegetable bed, my "secret garden," a shade garden and many other smaller beds. The one thing I've learned about taking on such a big task is to do it in phases. After three years of building, turning sod and lugging umpteen yards of top soil, I'm glad we spread the work out. And now we can sit back and relax (other than weeding, of course).

When we first moved in, there was no fence separating the yard from the driveway area. Because we live right next to a park, this was a huge privacy issue for me. I wanted to be able to have dinner on the patio without passersby checking out the food.

garden gate
The ivy was here, but the hosts, rhododendrons and Sweet Autumn clematis are new. The DIY burlap wreath is a seasonal addition.

Patio Area
flowers beside garage
Once you enter the patio area, there's a small garden along the garage wall...

The path leads to the vegetable garden which is enclosed with sections of old fence brought from the back of the property.

rose arbour, clematis

The "Jackmanii" clematis was in sad shape when we got here. It was overgrown and falling in onto itself. That first year, I cut it back to about 12" and prayed. Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith in the garden. That leap paid off as the clematis is thriving now.

Secret Garden
secret garden fence line
Secret Garden BEFORE
The above picture is what we started with - a sad fence line and a couple of tired hosta. This is what it looks like now...

The old shutters were added to break up the long boring fence line.
My secret garden is just that....mine. You can't see it from the house as it's tucked behind the perennial border in the top picture. Somehow or other it's turned into a yellow garden. Which was not my intention. But the helopsis, the tiger's eye sumac and day lilies give this sunny spot it's yellow. That's okay. Sometimes, you just have to let the garden create itself. This is the hottest part of the garden, so everything I grow here has to be drought tolerant - it's filled with spiderwort, some newly planted lavender and tons of daffodils in the spring. So there's something for every season.

Shade Garden
before shade garden
Shade Garden BEFORE
In high contrast to the hot secret garden is the shade garden which runs along the north end of the property. When we moved in there was nothing here but dirt because even the grass wouldn't grow.

hostas shade garden
Shade Garden AFTER
 We've filled it with hosta, hydrangeas and ferns and my favourite feature of all...

water feat
This tranquility fountain adds the pleasing sound of water and a cool spot on a hot day

We love to entertain so the garden needs to be something for everyone. It gets used A LOT. We've dined under the stars, had tea parties under the maple trees and pre-wedding family gatherings:

garden dining

This year, I can say we're done. But I know that with any garden, it's never "done". It's been a journey to create this oasis. We enjoy sitting on the deck watching the birds in the bird bath, dining on the patio alone or with friends, and puttering in the vegetable garden.

Thanks for joining me on our tour. And thank you, Stephanie, for allowing us to share our gardens with you and your readers.

Follow Heather here:


Thanks Heather! Next week, I'll feature the garden of Jennifer Farr from Kitchen Counter Chronicles.

Blogger Garden Tour Series
and my garden!


  1. Thank you so much, Stephanie, for allowing me the opportunity to share my garden with your readers. It was so much fun working with you! I love your blog!

  2. I was so excited to read about Heather's garden so thank you for posting this Stephanie. It far exceeds my expectations. I have to admit that I am drooling right now! It is stunning.


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