ATKINSON — Nancy and Edward Hoffman of 8 Sunset Drive were chosen as Garden of the Month recipients for May by the Atkinson Garden Club.

While the Hoffmans stress they have always considered their gardens a work in progress, they are equally grounded in family, memories and sensibilities.

The front garden's centerpiece is a 41-year-old Japanese maple. They have nurtured the maple since their fifth wedding anniversary.

A 30-year-old towering pine on the far side of the property was a gift from Edward Hoffman's brother. And a decades-old blue spruce stands as a tall sentry on the opposite perimeter. It was purchased as a seedling at the old King's department store, a landmark long gone from Route 125.

A low stone wall, which meanders to the rear of the property and is still under construction by Edward Hoffman, surrounds the maple and various bulbs, annuals, variegated hostas and euonymus. A lamppost adorned with clematis and surrounded by annuals leads to the annual and perennial border plants at the front of the house. The Hoffmans' hidden gem is a glass-walled conservatory with an abundance of hanging baskets of ferns, fronds and ivy.

Each month from spring to fall, members of the Atkinson Garden Club actively scour the community for outstanding gardens to be chosen for the Garden of the Month award.

If you know of a garden that is outstanding in some way — whether for design, size, color, creative use of plants or architectural elements, call Sheri Turell at 362-5683.

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