A Wake Forest couple has devoted the past three decades to growing ornamentals, specifically conifers and Japanese maples. These species are difficult to grow in Southern states, but the gardeners have embraced the challenge. Clay soil, in particular, makes growing conifers and maples problematic in humid conditions. To offset the poor soil, the couple have supplemented it with organic material and gypsum. They urge other gardeners to embrace challenges and experiment with different species.