Charles and Nannette Henry and their dog, Libby, are photographed by what Charles Henry calls a "volunteer" gourd vine that has taken over a dead tree and grown to about 30 feet tall behind their home on East Second Street.

The Henrys have a lush and diverse garden with a verity of vegetables, elephant ear plants, herbs and the like - all of which Charles said he takes quite a bit of time to cultivate.

But this year he has been surprised by the gourd vine and other volunteer plants that have thrived in the mild weather this summer.

"I just threw out an old gourd in the back corner and those seeds just took off," Charles said. "That plant and a volunteer sunflower were two of my top growers. I didn't do a thing for them."

Nannette said her husband also likes to keep a variety of flowers growing in front of their house for the many churchgoers who pass by on their way to the Prince of Peace Catholic Church nearby. "This gives them something nice to see. They stop and look all the time." (Staff photo by Ken Ritchie/