Other than letting everything grow, the front garden is all finished! Well, for now. I am still a novice gardener, but one thing I have learned is that gardens are dynamic and they are never done. All of the plants are in the ground, though, and I love how much curb appeal it’s added to the house.
The yard and landscaping were some of the last things we worked on at our last house, so we didn’t really have a chance to finish it or enjoy seeing many of the plants mature. With this house, I wanted to start planting, so I could have hedges of boxwood and hydrangeas, a flower garden, herbs and vegetables, and all of that fun stuff. It is going to take a few years to get it all done, but we’ll work on it bit by bit each spring and fall until it’s done.
We started with the front garden beds, since they are most visible. Unfortunately, this project wasn’t as simple as putting new plants in the ground, but we’ve had to remove rocks and old weed-blocking fabric, so it’s tough, dirty work that is slow going.
Here are the previous garden posts about removing the old to make way for the new and my plan, if you want more details on the process as well as the plants used…
As a reminder, here is how the garden looked when we first moved in last summer…
…and here is how it looks now…
We installed the trellis last week. It’s THIS ONE ordered off of Amazon. (Affiliate link) The size of it was a nice fit for our space and I like the traditional style of it as well. It was easy to assemble and we secured it to the wall with large screw-eyes inserted into studs and some white heavy duty zip ties. It’s made of PVC, so it won’t warp, rot, or need to be repainted.
Once the Sweet Autumn Clematis vine grows, it’ll add some nice height to the garden. This week, I worked on the space to the left of the front porch by replacing some peony bushes with Annabelle hydrangeas I bought on sale. I was a little sad to dig up the peonies, but they weren’t positioned very well and the blooming season is so short. Plus, I got the hydrangeas at a 30% off sale, making them $40/each. I thought that was a great price for bushes so large. I didn’t have a new spot for the peonies, yet, so I gave them to a friend who was happy to have them.
I planted another row of small boxwoods to form a hedge in front of the hydrangeas. I read that they help to hold up the Annabelle stems and I like that they’ll add some structure and green during the winter. They’ll also hide the gutter when the hydrangeas are cut back.
Speaking of the gutter, it used to empty right by the steps, but there wasn’t anywhere for the water to drain, so it would just pool against the garden bed, making it difficult to grow grass there. It was also unsightly having the gutter jutting out by the steps, so Jeff rerouted it to empty away from the left side of the house, which goes into a swale between our house and our neighbor’s house.
It does mean there is a pipe running under the window, but it’s low and the bushes will hide it as they grow and fill in. We’ll plant some new grass there in the fall to fill in the bare spots.
I also need to figure out a border solution. I removed the black in-ground border, because it was popping up in some places. I spoke to my neighbors, who used to have the same border, and they said they were constantly digging it up and putting it back in, so they finally got a cement border. I can see around our house that it will be a constant battle to keep it in the ground. (Maybe because of the freezing and thawing of the ground?)
Anyway, I’d like to do something with bricks or stones, but haven’t found just what I have in mind. For now, I cut a little channel with a shovel to give some separation from the grass and the newly mulched bed.
On the porch, I added the rug from my kitchen that was starting to unravel. It’s not really an outdoor rug, but I was going to pitch it, so I figured I’d give it a try. The boys and some neighborhood kids have been sitting out on it, playing and eating ice cream, so it’s a winner so far. It adds a little softness literally and visually, which is nice. It’s fairly protected, so hasn’t gotten wet, even with some strong thunderstorms that rolled through last week. .
I finished off the front tonight by installing a flag pole bracket, fitted with an American flag just in time for the 4th of July.
It’s been interesting how sticking with a white and green palette for the garden has somehow improved the appearance of the siding color. It all looks more harmonious to me now and the siding doesn’t look as “pink”.
I will keep you update as the garden grows!
When the weather is nice, I do plan to work on removing rock from the garden on the left side of the house and then we’ll do more planting and mulching in the fall. For now, gardening will be watering and weed pulling.
And, while I was working on the garden this evening, Jeff started work on the garage. I cannot wait to have this space completely organized! It’s been such a mess since we moved in, so I will appreciate all of the shelves, hooks, cubbies, and open floor space all the more.
Once last thing before I sign off… Thank you so much for all of the kind words about my dining room mural. It felt like a risk and it’s so nice to get such positive feedback on it.