Monday, January 2, 2012

Front Garden Renovation Spring/Summer 2011

Front yard before the renovation

This yard has a lot of grass, which makes it look like a really large yard, however it doesn't take you on a journey. You can see it all from any angle, boring. I feel like the circle bed around the tree trunk is way to small for the canopy, it needs to be larger to balance out the tree.

Front yard before the renovation

The plantings around the tree are planted way to close, and upon closer inspection, the soil has been piled up around the base by a few inches, a no no. You always want to plant a tree at the same level as for which it was grown in the pot, or at the level from the first roots protruding out of the trunk.

Front yard before the renovation

Boring, your eye just goes right to the street, and the 20 year old junipers hide the front of the house. Even thought the front of the house doesn't get a whole lot of light, there are a lot more interesting plant material that can liven up the space.

After the removal of the junipers from the front of the house

After the removal of the junipers you can now see the brick underneath the windows. After breaking up and the turning the soil, I had some volunteer pumpkin seeds sprout. I wasn't planning on putting in any plant material till next year, so what better way to fill the space and for the kids to have the experience of growing their own pumpkins. I also planted some of the plants I brought over from the townhouse garden, my Stargazer Lily's and Red Azalea. I also moved the boxwood's from other area's of the yard.

A simple Red Geranium and Bacopa display was created in some terracotta pots. I have always loved the look of Geraniums in those pots, it has such a Old English kinda feel, the patina it develops over time is beautiful.

This picture was taken early in the morning, in the summer. You can see that this area does get a little direct sun, which is good to keep in mind when deciding on what to plant.

My little helpers are assisting in the creation of the larger circular bed around the tree trunk.

Now your eye doesn't go to the street, it is stopped by the new beds

I have created a new bed by the base of the street lamp and moved one of the existing mature azalea's, it was originally planted in front of the window between the junipers. Also planted there is a collections of found Iris's, Clematis Montana, being trained up the lamp post and a California Lilac, the bees will love. A new small bed was created by the Hedge that is now planted with a Hydrangea.

The new larger bed around the tree really shows off the beauty of the trunk. I will be filling it with naturalizing bulbs like Snow Drops, Grape Hyacinth, Daffodils, and some Lady's Mantle that I grew from seeds that volunteered themselves.

When renovating the garden, I didn't want to jump in and fill the space right away with plant material. Taking the time to study the soil conditions and light levels of each area of the yard is important. Leaving the garden beds prepared and ready for plants is a great thing to do. I'm really enjoying shopping for new plants, wandering the nursery's and knowing if I find something I love, there will be a spot available right away to plant it.

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