Gardening Gone Wild. What made the month of June sail by so quickly? Oh yes, there was that beach vacation, how could one forget that? And the fairies took up a good deal of our blogging brain cells too. And there were some daylilies to keep track of. Well I guess that explains it. Back to the topic, please. Thank you. The topic is decks and patios, I think. In the photo above, taken in early April the deck adjoining the loft space above the garage hovers up the stairs from the lower deck outside the addition joining the main house to the garage. While there are garden beds all around both decks, in fact there is nothing but garden beds in the back yard, we are going to talk today about the beds under this upper deck.
This is a unique space, under the stairs. We had the leftover metal from the metal roofing afixed to the under side of the decking, making the area below somewhat dry. The edge of the metal allows the rain to irrigate this bed below as it seeps through the spaces between the boards and runs to the front edge away from the building. Primroses thrive under here and bloom earlier than the ones out in the garden, the blue and white ones show color in February in this photo. The other greenery is wallflowers, which bloom later in the spring with cheery yellow fragrant flowers.
The same bed as it is today. Sort of a mess of wallflowers going to seed, primroses trying to survive the drought, spent astilbes, ostrich and royal ferns, carex and something else.
Skipping back to 2003, the far end of the under deck bed shows the steps we had to add after the excavation for the garage took the ground level lower than the existing steps. Note the dirt slope to the right of these stairs.
Ignore the date printed on this photo, it was taken this January after my camera had a malfunction. I didn’t realize the date was there until it was too late to redo the pictures. Really, it is from this year. Notice the two round beds on either side of the steps. You would think that these would be great large planters for special specimens. What you don’t see are the vole warrens that run just inside the blocks. Often times the little varmints will skitter across the steps from one side to the other while I am sitting under the deck trying to decipher the meaning of life. It always jars me back to the here and now to see their little dark furry bodies.
This side was planted with crocus ‘Pickwick’. Amazingly the voles have not eaten them all and a few managed to bloom prettily this March. You can see down the length of the deck to the lower deck and stairway. Vole haven is what this entire bed should be called.
After the crocus are done, the fern leaf bleeding heart, anchors this side. Just under its foliage is my plaque from
Tina, getting some mossy patina. Thanks again, Tina.
Back to the present. It’s not so glamourous, is it?
One more glimpse of the past, the pink sweet william, white astilbe and just peeking along the egde and spilling over the block is dianthus ‘Little Boy Blue’. Daylily foliage holds the promise of many colorful blooms ahead. The ramp is visible at the end. I wanted another way to get into the garden from the upper deck and had the ramp built just to the right of the old concrete steps left over from the house that was torn down to build the garage. It is a nuisance sometimes to have that ramp, like when the twelve foot glass patio doors had to be brought around to the back to be installed in the addition. The workmen ended up removing the ramp because the doors were too tall to go under it. It took six men to carry the triple paned, all in one piece doors. They could only go a couple of feet at a time and have to set it down to rest. What an ordeal. Gardoctor, the Financier, our neighbor Mickey, a friend of G-doctor and the two contractors, one being the son of Mickey, were glad to see those doors in place. They were rewarded with daylilies. Except the young guys, they would rather have a refreshing beverage. This tale is told to explain why there is no railing on the ramp. It was destroyed in the take down and has not been replaced. In fact, I hate the spindles on the deck, they do not fit the style of our house at all. I would love to have metal instead. Maybe someday.
collection of faces, some are of the sun, some weather men and many green men. The harsh elements were causing some of these treasures to disintegrate, but they are safe and dry now.