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What would our yards be without cheesy garden art? A lot more boring!
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Several Gainesville yards are adorned with well-worn characters grinning from between bushes, trees and walkways. - photo by Tom Reed
Tell us about your favorite chessy garden art.

With deer, windmills, pairs of bunnies, dragonflies or frogs, you can find just about anything adorning front yards and gardens.

The concrete, ceramic or metal statues may be a little cheesy, but for some they mark a fun way to enjoy the garden.

Lucille and Hoyt Brookshire, who have lived on Sardis Road for more than 40 years, say they enjoy their garden art that was given to them as gifts or purchased themselves. Lucille makes it a point that frogs are the main theme in her yard.

"I am a fan of frogs," Lucille said. "The deer are my husband’s."

Hoyt spent years hunting and just loved the idea of having deer in his yard.

Across town, off Browns Bridge Road, two more deer watch the traffic at Almon and Patsy McGehee’s house. They sit on the patio and have been there for six to eight years, Almon said.

"They have weathered out a little bit," said Almon, who also has a small frog statue sitting on an outdoor table that once served as a door stop. "My wife bought them, so I guess they were her idea."

Another pair of deer, a doe and a buck, sit in a flower bed along the front of the house next to a bird bath.

The idea of adding these bits of art to the garden start off slow and then the collection just builds, the Brookshires said.

"We like our yard natural; we just enjoy the stuff out there," Lucille said. "My sister used to make ceramics and then people started giving me things as gifts. Like my oldest daughter was at the grocery store and picked up a frog there."

The Brookshires have butterflies that adorn their carport, frogs of all sizes and materials, a concrete eagle and pelican, dragonflies and even a windmill that Hoyt said "was an impulse buy" on a trip to Walmart.

"It just makes it more fun," he said.

Hoyt, who does most of the gardening, keeps the yard looking nice and has done so for 43 years, he said. Many of his pieces he bought at Wayne Wilson’s Pottery in Lula.

"We’ve got the ‘Lady of (the) Garden of Good and Evil,’ bird baths, St. Francis of Assissi, rabbits, just anything," said Wendy Wilson, the daughter of Wayne Wilson. "They range anywhere from $9.99 to $119."

Just a few houses down from the Brookshires there is another home adorned with statues in its front yard. There is a concrete dog, a child on stilts, a pair of bunnies, a statue of an angel, a three-tier fountain, a koala bear planter and two metal statues of children jumping rope.

These added garden elements make some folks extra happy when they spend time out in their garden. Do you have any garden art you are especially proud of? Please e-mail us at life@gainesvilletimes.com to share your sometimes cheesy, but always loved, garden art.

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