Holloway has spent 42 of his 55 years growing, playing
and gardening in the same yard in Hampton, Va.
a self-taught gardener with no formal training, and
loves the challenge of turning nothing into something
that projects beauty and purpose in the gardens he has
created around the 7,500-square-foot yard. Recently, his
creativity won him the city’s 2015 Yard of the Year
honor from the Yards Are Really Distinctive Showplace
Contest sponsored annually by the Hampton Roads Clean
City Commission. Judges selected Holloway for his
interesting recycled and new yard art, rain barrel,
vegetable garden, water feature and native plants,
according to a commission news release.
yard has a very whimsical but yet manicured look,"
says Holloway, who lives there with his mother and toy
poodle, Daisy. He has been a hair stylist for 27 years.
whimsy includes his favorite piece, a bright yellow door
standing upright in one of the gardens. There’s also a
miniature village and ponds for goldfish, turtles and
water plants. Fences are lined with fanciful artwork and
birdhouses. Several fountains entertain him with the
sounds of trickling water. Birdbaths and feeders invite
feathered friends into the yard, and landscape lighting
extends the yard’s beauty into the night. Many items
come from yard and estate sales.
love finding treasures that I can repurpose that just
need a little TLC to make them look great again,"
yellow door came as a result of replacing an interior
door on the house. With new paint, it’s now the main
bottles have been transformed into a bottle tree and
bottle peacock. Statuary collections include rabbits,
turtles, frogs, gnomes, cats and poodles.
poodle statues are very important to me because each one
represents a poodle I’ve rescued over the last 16
years," says Holloway. He’s a volunteer master
trainer with the Jasmine Charitable Trust, an
organization that trains standard poodles to be service
those statues always makes me smile."
spends 15 to 20 hours weekly in the garden, mostly
weekends. He finds the time peaceful and relaxing and
enjoys every aspect of its needs, especially pruning.
favorite gardening tool is one that was not necessarily
intended for yard work," he says.
a pair of heavy scissors that belonged to my
grandmother. She used them in her job as a seamstress,
working with heavy fabrics such as canvas. I use them to
do quite a bit of trimming in the yard."
the years, Holloway’s yard has gone through many
facelifts, thanks to the wrath of two of Mother Nature’s
storms. In 2011, a hurricane took out a huge red oak
that shaded the back yard, so shade-loving hydrangeas
had to be moved to get them out of the new sunlight. In
2012, a tornado came through his neighborhood, taking
down five of six trees in his neighbor’s yard. Those
trees fell onto Holloway’s property, crushing shrubs
peony, gardenia, camellia, arborvitae, forsythia, Knock
Out roses, golden euonymus, aucuba, Japanese maple,
hydrangea and burning bush are his favorite plants.
Seasonal color comes in the form of bulbs such as
lilies, gladiola, daffodils, hyacinth, amaryllis and
paperwhites, as well as annuals in pots and hanging
hindsight, those storms gave me the opportunity to
redesign and do some new things in the yard, which I
have thoroughly enjoyed," he says.
top gardening tips include:
Make your yard your own. Do what you like to keep it
interesting and you will want to work in and enjoy it.
Plant only what you are willing to maintain.
Select plants that bloom at different times of the year
so you always have some color.
Avoid placing plants too close together, especially when
you use small shrubs.
Repurpose and incorporate different items into your
yard; it doesn’t have to be all shrubs and flowers.
Use good gardening/working tools, and clean them often.
Keep a tarp or plastic in your vehicle for transporting
Check out Master Gardener plant sales for good buys on
plants and knowledgeable people to answer questions
about those plants.
Set up a potting station for everything you need for new
Enjoy your garden!