Lisa and Marc Blackburn purchased the charming house at 946 B St. in Ashland's Railroad District almost three years ago. Two years ago, they started relandscaping with help from Jane Hardgrove and Juan Meraz of Bearclaw Landscape Services. Now theirs is the Ashland Garden Club’s Garden of the Month for June 2017.

Lisa Blackburn’s instructions to designer Hardgrove were that she wanted a whimsical, fairy-tale garden that did not feature the usual deer-resistant plants such as rosemary, heather and lavender. The result is a charming, inviting space with lots of texture and color. A water feature provides pleasant sound. Marc does almost all the maintenance, averaging 10 hours a week in the garden and has started getting creative on his own, adding or replacing plants as necessary. He uses a deer repellent on some plants.

This is a relatively small space shaded in front by ash trees and on the side by a giant cedar. Hardgrove added Japanese maples for color and texture. Among the many plants are hellebore, Japanese anemone, brunnera, choisya, bleeding heart, digiplexis, columbine, hostas, peonies, pieris, black-eyed Susan, salvia, Japanese fuchsia, and goldmound spirea. Golden creeping jenny and stands of ornamental grass (called orange sedge but bronze in color) fill in and provide balance. Private spaces on the side and in back feature azaleas, as well as daphne for fragrance, among many other choices.

Stroll by 946 B St. for a treat for sight, sound and aroma. If you come in the morning, you may find Marc at work in the garden.

The Ashland Garden Club has been selecting Gardens of the Month from April through September since 2000. Nominations are gratefully received at Check out the club’s website at or come to the meetings at 12:30 p.m. on the first Monday of the month, October through May, at the Community Center on Winburn Way.