If you love blue flowers (and who doesn't?), one of the most popular must-have plants for your garden is hydrangea. These versatile shrubs produce giant ball-shape flowers that look stunning in the landscape surrounding your home, as specimen plants in your garden, and make gorgeous (and easy!) bouquets.See More
Country Gardens magazine photographed the organic garden of Anne Raver in central Maryland. See pictures of her history-filled farm and get tips from this gifted garden writer.
Ancient boxwoods line the front walk to the original 1901-1903 farmhouse built on land that's been in Anne Raver's family since 1795. "All of the outbuildings are filled with family things," Anne says, "from wooden carts and plows to hoes and iron frying pans."
A pistachio-green Dutch door opens into the former horse stalls in the lowest level of the barn. In the old haymow above, Anne and her partner Rock built a loftlike apartment.
A bucolic view across rolling fields toward one of the many outbuildings on the 125 acres of Anne's property in central Maryland is just one of the lovely treats her farm offers.
The view is delightful across Anne's organic vegetable garden toward the rustic walled garden in the old barnyard behind the barn. The walls of the rustic garden in the old barnyard were built by Anne's grandfather from stones he pulled from the fields with a horse and mule. Anne harvests fresh salad greens all year long from her cold frame.
Succulent peas ripe for the picking scramble toward the sun. Anne's guests are welcome to pick the peas, basil, and the rhubarb.
Dried seed heads of bread poppies (Papaver somniferum) reveal their architectural beauty in the late afternoon sun. Save poppy seeds to sow in late winter right where you want them to grow in the garden.
Coreopsis grandiflora 'Sunfire' produces an abundance of large, single yellow blooms with burgundy-red centers; it grows best in full sun and reaches about 2 feet in height.
An organic gardener all of her life, Anne sprinkles cayenne pepper on her eggplant plants in an effort to thwart an attack from flea beetles.
Bread poppy is useful and ornamental. It offers lovely purple papery petals and dried pods that are popular in flower arrangements. Use the seeds in baking.
A still life of objects found around the barn and farmyard includes rusty garden implements, horseshoes, a wasp's nest, and terra-cotta pots filled with succulents.
Anne's beloved Wolfie cools off in a breezeway, smiling for photographer Rob Cardillo.
Holding pots of flowering plants ready for use in a photo shoot, a wooden wheelbarrow looks right at home in front of a hydrangea-blue barn door.
Anne and her partner, Rock, enjoy walking the paths he mowed, following the deer trails that skirt the edge of a hedgerow or hayfield.