Season’s End

winter lightThe close of the gardening season is coming up fast. This means I am trying to finish four landscape projects before the coming of the cold closes me out. An old client with a new project-just today we decided to push the envelope. There are bulbs still not in the ground.  Garden cleanups not finished.  Fountains to drain, leaves to rake, boxwood to protect.  An old pergola restored by Branch that needs installation.  A new pergola for the same client which will need to be assembled. The season’s end is unpredictable, and always too early. But my season’s end is a a beginning for a Rob.  Detroit Garden Works offers keen gardeners a way to celebrate the cold and dormant seasons.

nOV 4 2014 (11)His light sculptures are extraordinary.  They are engineered to be easy to install, whether you hang them in your trees, or  sink the free standing models into pots or the ground.  The coming of the cold foretells the coming of the dark.  Gardeners understand that the life of the garden is energized by light.  Once the sun sinks low in the sky, and the daylight hours are few, what gardener is not interested in lighting the landscape for the winter?

custom-lighting.jpgWe have only one event at night per year at Detroit Garden Works.  Our winter/holiday open house provides a chance to experience, and review our winter lighting designs.  I would not miss this night for anything, and I work right next to him day after day, and year after year.  I can bank on a look I have not seen before. Rob has made a mission of sourcing materials for winter and holiday pots-he has been long and strong in this regard for over a decade. Every year he manages to surprise and enchant.

merry-Christmas.jpg I feel confident that if you should pay us a visit at 5pm on Thursday, you will be treated to a warm and energetic experience of the winter holiday. Whether your taste runs to formal and elegant, or naturally rustic, there will be materials to decorate a holiday or a winter from a gardener’s point of view.


As much as I regret my garden going down, I would prefer to put my best foot forward.  Looking forward is sign of a gardener. Dividing perennials in the fall, seeds ordered for spring, the spring flowering bulbs that just went in the ground – planning for the season to come is fueled by hope. We have a holiday and winter season coming up. That season is as much cause to celebrate as any other. Most of our fresh cut twigs and greens will be here in the next week. The landscape crew will switch gears for a month, putting together and installing holiday and winter containers. Incredibly, we are as busy at this time of year as we are in May – and for good reason.  No one who loves to garden wants to give it up, even for a moment.

winter.jpgAnything light and light hearted will appeal to those of us who have a long winter ahead.

white-flocked-holiday-tree.jpgOur flocked Frazier firs, available by special order, are new this year.

flocked-tree.jpgThe French blue flocking is an especially sumptuous and elegant color.

holiday-open-house.jpgI hope you are able to stop by sometime this season-we hope to make the experience a good one.



  1. Oh my goodness! I always find so much inspiration here! This Summer has kept me busy in the gardens…so much catching up to do!



  2. Gosh, how i wish i lived closer to Detroit Garden Works. Such marvelous inspiration from you and Rob and the rest of the staff for whatever the season. Thanks for keeping us in the loop …not to mention motivated, Deborah!

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Greg, we are a serious group. I so like the idea of celebrating the holiday and winter season with passionate gardeners I know far and wide. What a pleasure for me and all of my staff to meet you this summer. Best to you, from all of us. Please send pictures! Best, Deborah

  3. I would LOVE any pictures (inside and out) you can provide of your open house. I also wish I lived in Detroit to attend. It is so exciting to see what you come up with each year. Thank you for your inspiration.

  4. Amanda Burkett says

    I live much too far away to journey in for this event . . . But I assure you, if I were closer, I’d be at your door at opening! The blue flocked tree is breathtaking–as is your store. Love the beauty that you send my way. Fondly–Amanda

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Amanda, those flocked trees are so incredibly beautiful-stunning. We have lots of orders for them as of today. A French blue flocked tree – I signed up. We are having these flocked trees trucked in from a Michigan company. They grow their own trees. And they flock. In person, these trees recall the woods of Minnesota, and the most fashionable addresses in Paris. all the best to you, Deborah

  5. I live in Alabama these days but will be visiting family in the Detroit area over the Thanksgiving holiday and am looking forward to stopping by Detroit Garden Works. I recently found your blog when looking for Fall container ideas. I think you and your crew are a very talented and creative bunch!!! Thank you for the inspiration!!!

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Nicole, please do stop by. You will not be disappointed. If we have done our work as we should, you will be intrigued! best, Deborah

  6. Deborah,
    I found your website by chance early last spring. I wish I was able to get to Detroit and visit the shop myself! Your work and the shops “look ” and merchandise is inspiring to say the least!
    I have been the buyer and merchandiser for a Boston area flower and garden shop for 24 years. You and your staff have some fabulous and fresh ideas that excite and energize me, even after all this time in the business!
    I always forward your latest blog post to my coworkers . They feel the same way I do!
    Thanks for keeping the standard high and the ideas fresh and inspired. And mostly, thanks for sharing!
    Lisa Ahern
    Cedar Grove Gardens
    Dorchester, Ma.

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Lisa, sharing is a good thing. A share encourages another person to express themselves in a totally unique way. This sharing all around makes a structure upon which a community can be built. We can learn from one another. Gardeners-there are enough of them to make a country. best, Deborah

  7. Deborah: great to see you yesterday!!! The shop looks amazing as always….My friend and I so enjoy our trips to DGW! You and Rob have done a great job…..The holiday decorations are inspiring….don’t work too hard…Diane

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Diane, it was so good to see you. I am happy about how our place looks, and more than happy about the response to that work. I am glad to get your seal of approval. The Detroit Garden Works crew is a stellar group indeed. As for Rob-he manages to make the planet spin in a very personal, thoughtful, and energetic direction. This is a very happy and fruitful time for me. best, Deborah

  8. Jackie Nygaard says

    Your store is amazing! Everything that you display is always fresh, crisp and clean! I love the holidays and your pictures that you display always brighten my day! Its good to read your blog and realize that there is someone else in the industry that goes through the same everyday struggles that I do. I really appreciate your blog and you for writing it! You make me learn, appreciate,dream and strive to be better at what I do. So thank you for keeping a lot of us going everyday!! have a great open House!

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Jackie, our open house was packed-never have there been so many people in the shop at one time. It was such a pleasure for me, to make contact with so many people. Rob, Shannon, Monica, Sunne, Margarita, Scott and Christine are the best. They make magic. best, Deborah

  9. Gorgeous and inspirational as always! Like the other commenters, wish I .oved close enough to take advantage of your shop in person.

  10. Those circles of light are simply extraordinary!

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Terry, they are so simple, and so compelling. Rob’s lighting work is awesome – no question. Thanks, Deborah

  11. Loved this article. Your store looks awesome! I too wish I lived closer.

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