Sorry I haven’t updated my blog in a while, I have been busy with various projects but haven’t found the time to write, partly because our dog is no longer waking me up at silly o’clock thank goodness! Although I did fit much more into my day by getting up at 5.30am!
Remember the view from my kitchen window that I really wanted to change?
well this is the view now after 6 months of work……
We have 2 new low maintenance flower beds with similar planting, the one nearer the house has lower growing plants so that this bed no longer blocks the view of the rest of the garden. The third bed at the back on the right will be my veg patch. There’s still lots to do but it looks so much better already!
We decided to clear the bed nearest the house of everything except the two beautiful, Japanese Acers. We moved two huge phormiums from this bed & replanted them at the bottom & right of the garden to draw the eye to the boundary, to my amazement they seem to have coped with being moved & are both doing ok. We also lifted & salvaged all the black grass & Verbena Bonariensis that had spread. After clearing & digging we covered both beds with strong weed suppressant fabric & pegged it down & then began the exciting job of planting. The bed furthest away was tackled first
Starting to plant up the bed furthest from the house
Both beds have a mix of small trees, shrubs & perennials. We tried to reuse as many existing plants as possible, We moved the tall zebra grass Miscanthus sinensis Zebrinus from the bed near the house – splitting the existing clump & planting some at the back of the new bed at the bottom of the garden, it grows tall & thick & should form a bright backdrop in one corner. We had an existing Acer Japonica in a pot (can’t remember the variety) which went in, & I bought a lovely Forest Pansy – Cercis Canadensis a small tree with beautiful heart shaped leaves that turn red, I also bought some purple Euphorbia and for winter interest, a couple of Pittosporum Tom Thumb – they also pick up the colour of the Euphorbia. I added a clump of purple fountain grass – Pennisetum rubrum & pony tail grass- Stipa tenuissima from elsewhere in the garden. This gives lovely movement & texture to the bed. I used some of the black grass to fill in some gaps together with an existing penstemon, some dark red Sedum & the some Verbena Bonariensis. We then used slate & garden pebbles to cover the weed suppressant fabric. This bed was completed in August & has already filled out well.
The bed nearer the house is planted in a similar way to pick up some of the shapes & colours of the other bed but with smaller & more compact plants. We left the 2 existing acer trees in situ & added a gorgeous Katsura tree – the leaves smell of burnt sugar when the sun hits them. We reused some of the black grass & an existing Hebe, the same Euphorbia, Stipa & Pennisetum varieties, a different penstemon, 3 box plants which will be clipped into balls, mirrored by 3 bright green balls of the dwarf Hebe ‘Emerald Gem’. I have also added a lovely compact Nandina Domestica & the new Mahonia ‘soft caress’, together with some Hellebores & Cyclamen for some winter colour. I also transplanted some perennial violas from another part of the garden to this bed which should give some lovely colour & scent in spring.
The centrepiece of this bed is a birdfeeding station so I can watch the birds from my kitchen window, it took a few days for the birds to realise it was safe to use but now we have a regular show of visitors including our resident squirrel!
We covered the weed supppressant with large gravel in this bed as was the cheapest option but I think it really lifts everything. Obviously it’s a little bare at the moment but I can’t wait for next spring to watch things come to life.
I am so happy with the work we have done in a few months & very grateful to my friend Jackie who has helped me get my gardening mojo back. She runs a gardening business & a lovely shop selling gardening goodies please visit her new facebook page The Garden Room
Next job is to plan my little veg patch……