Arbors, sheds & other hardscapes can enhance your garden

arbor at entrance to backyard
A gap between these two gardens would be enough to allow you to enter the backyard, but the arbor and path make the entrance charming. This is the landscape of Jerry and Marie Wysocki in Hamburg

by Connie Oswald Stofko

Visitors to the gardens of Jerry and Marie Wysocki in Hamburg delight in the abundance of plant material. But hardscapes are integral parts of the gardens, too.

Hardscapes are the constructed, non-plant features in a landscape, such as the arbor and path that lead you into the backyard.

The Wysockis shared their landscape during Open Gardens in July. When you tour garden walks and Open Gardens, try to look past the brightly colored flowers and see the other elements, such as hardscapes, that make the gardens attractive.

porch with garden
Soil slopes down in the garden abutting the front porch. Photo by Connie Oswald Stofko

Is a porch part of the house or is it a hardscape in the garden? In the Wysockis’ yard, it’s a little of both because they integrated their porch into the landscape.

When the porch was added 15 years ago, it had a two-foot drop. According to the building code, it would need a railing.

The Wysockis didn’t want to add a railing, so they got rid of the two-foot drop by adding a garden. They brought in four loads of top soil and added it in front of the porch, sloping the soil away from the porch. A magnolia tree, a rose of Sharon and many perennials add privacy as well as beauty to the area.

See more views below of hardscapes in their gardens.

garden under magnolia in Hamburg
A magnolia tree as well as perennials for shade and sun thrive in the garden that abuts the front porch. Photo by Connie Oswald Stofko
potting shed
When the Wysockis’ children outgrew the playhouse, the couple began storing garden tools there and turned it into a potting shed. Photo by Connie Oswald Stofko
patio with small stones and fire pit
Small stones form the surface of the patio with a fire pit. Large containers of plants soften the edges. This is one of several seating areas in the backyard. Photo by Connie Oswald Stofko
clematis covering tall fence
A tall, plain fence becomes a trellis for large clematis vines, which Marie Wysocki loves. To the right you get a glimpse of the inground pool. Photo by Connie Oswald Stofko

7 Comments on “Arbors, sheds & other hardscapes can enhance your garden

  1. Thanks so much for sending these pictures. They are so awesome. I love your playhouse/potting shed.

  2. Thank you Dana Dee! Connie is an AMAZING photographer and we are honored that she show cased our gardens in a few Buffalo Niagara Gardening publications. Thanks Connie for making our gardens shine through your lens!

  3. Patricia, I’m so glad you enjoyed the photos. We had a nice stretch of beautiful weather, but as the days become shorter and there is less to do in the garden, it is nice to plan and dream!

  4. Thanks so much for showing us something pretty as our gardens wind down. This is a beautiful garden and gives me lots to dream about!

  5. Greetings Wysocki,
    Your property is lovely. Truly a work of your creativity and planning.
    Enjoy, hopefully we will be able to
    Enjoy the Open Gardens next summer😎

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