A garden can never be finished. It’s simply cannot, for it is a living thing, constantly changing, hopefully growing, evolving. Just like the gardener.
Above: Veronica ‘Royal Candles’ fronted by Erysimum cheiri. Note to self: Save seeds of that wallflower, it’s the only one we have.
Evolving right along over a year later from groundbreaking in the crabgrass lawn, progress can be seen. There has been growth as the plantings have settled in, making themselves at home.
Above: Festuca glauca, Stipa nasella and Salvia ‘Caradonna’ stand out in the front walk planting. The green man in the tree stump approves, even as he seems agitated about that rude squirrel violating his space.
The same scene in January, 2015.
The street view has also improved. It is a little less wild and unruly, more like a garden and less like an unmown lawn which is exactly how the side bed between the houses began. That is correct. The Financier was gently persuaded to allow a wide section of what had been cut grass (mostly weeds, CRABGRASS) to grow undisturbed. Perennials were added as they became available and cornflower seeds were sown last fall to help fill in the space more quickly. A strip of boxwood hedge on the front portion of the property line added definition and a row of lavender in front of the boxwood added pizzazz.
This is what it looked like a year ago, from a slightly different vantage point. Look for the pale lavender of the Allium christophii on the far right side in the present day shot above this one for reference. Everything else is so large, the Allium is dwarfed now. The lavender has grown much larger than expected. The boxwood is just a row of sticks, barely visible as darker green wands behind it.
The fenced back gardens have shown improvement, as well. The image above was taken last May, a year ago. Garden art and containers were set willy nilly and sugar snap peas were grown on bamboo teepees. When the time was right, meaning when I felt like it, cardboard and mulch were laid over the closely mown lawn after the art and containers were relocated. Again. I have entirely too much art and too many containers. Many and much were left behind at the old house, too!
More lavender, more fall seeded cornflowers and a young Rosa ‘Veilchenblau’ are helping the south facing fence resemble the beginning of a respectable garden. That rose is one that was grown first in my Texas garden and again on the shed at the old garden. The photo below shows it in full May glory in 2011.
While only a once bloomer, I adore the prolific, dark flowers. It helps to give a sense of continuity to my gardening life. May the new Veilchenblau grow to match that same abundance. I feel confident that it will.
The opposite fence is where the garden began. After we closed on this house but before we even moved in, a dump truckload of planting mix was delivered to form the nursery. All the potted and bagged plants from the old garden were stuck unceremoniously in there after it was spread out a bit. Another truckload was added that winter to form what is called the lower nursery. That bed is shady and more moist. These two beds are my pride and joy. Many a pleasant moment is spent sitting in the shade contemplating the gardens and making plans for improvements. Last year Geranium ‘Johnson’s Blue’ offered immediate impact and bloomed all season with the help of a couple of haircuts as blossoms faded.
The current view reveals the growth and filling in that has taken place in one year’s time. Johnson’s Blue has only just begun flowering, but there is plenty of visual interest with leaf form and color from the assorted Heucheras, Hostas, ferns and grasses. This photo is taken from the corner of the fence, where the above mentioned navel gazing often takes place in comfortable chairs. It is shady, cool and not too breezy as to be a bother during the languid summer months. The shed is an anchor to the changing seasons as the years roll by.
Zooming in always gives a more pleasing capture. It can showcase small treasures that might be missed in the long shot, like the dark red blooms of Lysimachia atropurpurea. But I also wanted to share what my eye sees, the real warts and all view. There has been toil and treasure expended to create a new garden here, starting from scratch. So far, so good. May the garden continue to progress as long as the gardener can still draw a breath. Onward.