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Old House Garden Staples

For me, the garden is just as much a part of home as the house and I spend countless hours outside tending to mine. It is truly a labor of love and watching the plants grow and the garden mature reminds me daily to enjoy the small things in life and to be patient. It's especially rewarding to care for plants that have been around for years, some dating back 50+ years.

When I purchased my house five years ago, I had two camellia trees and an otherwise clean slate. While I would have loved to have had more mature plants in the yard, it did give me the opportunity to select plants that I love but also that would have been garden staples back when the house was built in the early 1900's.

Old House Garden Staples

Here are some of my favorites:

  • Hydrangeas - While the big full blooms are my favorite, I have several varieties in my yard and just over 30 in my garden.

  • Carolina Jessamine - This trailing beauty grows quickly and I hope in a couple of years will cover my new covered pergola.

  • Gardenias - These evergreens have beautiful white blooms and are very fragrant.

  • Confederate Jasmine - Another trailing evergreen, these can be found in many gardens in historic Charleston, SC and their aroma is intoxicating.

  • Boxwoods - A classic in any garden, these bushes provide structure throughout the year.

  • Roses - No garden can go wrong with roses with their beautiful, colorful blooms and since they come in such a variety, there's plenty to choose from.

Click below for a few more.

Trailing Plants

With my new Covered Pergola complete, I have started trailing the Carolina Jessamine I planted three years ago using garden training wire and hooks. While it will take some time to fill in, I can already envision how it will look in a few years.



The dream is to have Carolina Jessamine trailing from one direction and climbing roses from the other to create an arch of plants on both sides of the covered pergola. Once both sides are filled in it will create a cozy and beautiful place to hang out with family and friends.

Last week I asked friends on Instagram what are some plants they think of when they think of an old house garden and there were so many great suggestions. Below is a list of all of the Old Garden Favorites I hope will inspire you to add a few to your own garden.

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