A select few Ozark residents have had the privilege of visiting Heaven’s Gate, a privately owned and award-winning garden on the outskirts of the city.
Larry and Sue Lapp purchased the lakeside property in the 70’s, and only have one azalea bush and a blueberry tree. Now, 40 something years later, the couple has turned the property into their own piece of Heaven, as Mr. Lapp says.
“There was a photographer out here one time, and she said one day you should name this place,” Larry said. “I thought about it a little bit and I said ‘Heaven’s Gate.’ It’s just our little piece of heaven here on earth.”
The Lapp’s have done all of the yard work themselves, other than the occasional hole digging and tree trimming which they ask a neighborhood boy to help with.
“Sometime Sue will be working all day and she doesn’t buy hardly any of her plants,” Larry said. “She will take a cutting off of any of these plants down here, like these roses, and she has grown almost everything from just those cuttings.”
The Lapp’s now have more than 500 azalea bushes on the property and have lost count of the other plants, all which they have put in the ground themselves.
They have dedicated different parts of the property to the loved ones they have lost. A swing by the lake for Sue’s mom and a sitting area at the bottom of a hill for her dad. A bench by the lake for Larry’s dad, and a sitting area surrounded by flowers for his mother.
The Lapp’s have been recognized in numerous publications for their gardens, and most recently were named the yard of the month for June 2018 by the Ozark Beautification Committee.
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What makes the cut? Anything that you would consider good!