Recently, I was talking with a lady that is a Garden Designer. I was “oh – you mean Landscaping Designer?”. She said “No – Garden Designer.”, and then she started explaining the difference of those professions. Little I knew that Landscaping Designer is a professional that re structures your entire landscaping. He will of course choose plants, flowers, bushes with the project but, mainly they move the shape and contours of your landscaping, they dig, they do sitting areas, plan according to the sun light and irrigation levels. Garden Designer basically studies the landscaping that you already own and choose the best plants to grow in there maintaining the original format of your land. I thought that was interesting because right now, I don’t have any money for any changes in my landscape, but my front bed needs love. After the renovation, all the plants were destroyed and we intentionally removed this over grown boxwoods to open up the front of the house with the new siding. Here are my attempts for a garden design in my front beds.
First challenge was the front door sides that are not leveled. The right side is lower than the left side. I couldn’t put the traditional 2 bushes in each side to wrap around the door. Second challenge is the hill on the right side. We used to have grass there and the husband used to run over the stairs with the lawn mower to reach to that side to cut the grass. It was a pain. Cutting grass on a baby hill is difficult plus with the brand new stairs I really don’t want a lawn mower scratching all the new stones.
After reading some posts in Fred Gonsowski’s blog. I came up with some ideas:
- Start from the end corners of the house and move towards the door. I hope that by doing this, I will have a better flow around the front door. The orange color in the door should be enough of a statement itself. 🙂
- Plant big in the back but not too big. Initially, I wanted a background of boxwoods. Turns out that you can’t find a good deal on boxwoods in late summer anymore. That put my mind to work… then I found out that there is a type of azaleas that are evergreen. You get the best of both worlds. They bloom on spring and remain green the rest of the year. Plus they can be pruned and shaped to take a form of a round boxwood. They won’t grow big and sometimes tall like boxwoods, but that is what I want anyway.
- Plant ground cover in the right side hill bed. That will avoid cutting the grass and solve my issues with re mulching every year and the Full-sun/Part-sun spots.
- Plant only perennials. Leave annuals for occasional fun in some spots. The last thing I want is to be spending money and time with plants that will die ( personal opinion ).
Here are some sample of plants I found out in an online gardening site. I bought them online. Yes – online… I kind of knew I was not getting nice huge plants you get from the nursery… but… this was a bit too hard-core gardening for me. Most of the plants came in dormant state which is ok. But the 6 boxwoods I ordered for $29,99 came in the shape and form of one boxwood leaf… which means it will probably takes decades to become a baby boxwood… I still planted everything because you never know right? Maybe next year I will have a nice update on this. LOL.
Above is what I would like to have… and what I bought online…
This is what I have done so far.
- Myrtle in one side of the walkway. Blooms purple baby flowers early spring. Blooming goes all the way to beginning of summer. Part sun/shade, although I think they bloom better under the full sun. Easy to grow, not too invasive. Easy to maintain. Not weed proof. Hardy. Can be stepped on.
- Mums on the other side of the walkway along with decorative grass. The grass will bloom delicate purple flowers on late summer.
- Evergreens around the basement window.
- Hydrangeas Trees on the ends of the house. Actually, this is an interesting topic. Those are Limelight or Paniculata Hydrangeas. They are hardy ones that will always bloom even if we have a harsh winter and frost on early spring.
- Roses. I still need to put a trellis in between the two windows by the left but the idea is that someday I will have a nice climbing roses in red.
- Azaleas in strawberry pink.
- The bed by the driveway is a tough one to grow anything… so far what is being lasting is the Ajuga and some herbs. I did plant as well some azeleas… we’ll see how they do next spring.
I still have a lot of work to do… but that is what is fun about gardening. You can plan and think and then if you don’t like change your mind.