Page 2 of 2 Previous

Continued: Beginner's luck for 'Beautiful Garden' winners in Andover

  • Article by: LYNN UNDERWOOD , Star Tribune
  • Last update: January 21, 2014 - 2:59 PM

For whimsical personal touches, Mary sprinkles the gardenscape with frog figures perched on lily pads, tiny birdhouses suspended from trees, and a piece of driftwood the couple pulled out of a river in Wisconsin.

Each spring, Mary tackles a new garden project. “Mary says jump,” joked Mike, “and I say, ‘How high?’ ”

As a respite during hot summer days, Mary crafted a shady woodland garden with gnomes peeking out among ferns and hosta under a clump of maple trees.

“Gnomes used to give me the creeps,” she said. “I pick the ones that don’t look mean and grumpy.”

After 13 years, the couple have created a lush suburban oasis amid the green turf, which still covers a substantial part of the large back yard.

“Your eyes need a spot to rest,” said Mary. “And the green backdrop really makes the colors pop.”

Although the Kulseths didn’t achieve their mission of a low-maintenance yard, they wouldn’t trade their labor of love for anything.

“We don’t plop in front of the TV — our gardens are our entertainment,” said Mike.

Mary agreed. “I turn on my music and start deadheading,” she said. “It’s heaven.”


Lynn Underwood • 612-673-7619


  • related content

  • Photo gallery: Beginner’s luck for “Beautiful Garden” winners in Andover

    Tuesday January 21, 2014

    Self-taught gardeners transformed their suburbanback yard from green turf into a colorful oasis.

  • The Kulseths' tips for beginning gardeners

    Tuesday January 21, 2014

    TIPS FOR BEGINNING GARDENERSDo your homework. Read the description card that comes with each plant or do research online, said...

  • Project: Beautiful Gardens

    Tuesday April 14, 2015

    We discover several spectacular private gardens each year in our Beautiful Gardens contest. From October to April, we'll bring you into one Twin Cities garden a month.

  • Mike and Mary Kulseth have replaced turf with cottage-style beds, water features and shaded woodland gardens, creating a pleasing amalgam of texture, shape and color. “She likes planting, and I like building,” Mike said. “We just kept going.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters