Despite my all-too-infrequent posts on here, I have in fact been keeping busy in the garden. The weather has been cooperating, with only a few spurts of rain here and there, and temps still mostly tolerable (50s). In a semi-shady corner of the yard, up against a fence, I did some major tilling and weeding and planted several Nandina ‘Gulf Stream’ and a seedling Camellia ‘Winter Star’ the other week, and topped it off with a nice dressing of pine bark mulch. Then, of course, I neglected to take a picture, and now the mulch is covered up by needles from the giant pine that hangs overhead. But you can take my word for it that it looks really nice! There’s still more I want to do in that section; it could use some shorter plants in front of the shrubs…hosta, ferns, perhaps some solomon’s seal or bleeding heart.
I’m also working on a 15’ x 3’ section up against the back of the house; last week I cleared away the weeds and grass, and the last few days have been spent pouring over my gardening books and my landscape design software to see what would work and look nice in this space.
My goal is to, as much as possible, always have something to look at regardless of the season: flowers in spring/summer, colorful foliage in fall, and berries and evergreen foliage in winter. With that in mind, my plan so far is to have three Thuja occidentalis ‘Emerald Green’ arborvitaes, followed by either Ilex verticilata (Winterberry holly) or Cornus sericea (Red Osier dogwood), and rounding it out with either Itea virginica ‘Little Henry’ sweetspire or Fothergilla ‘Mt Airy’ witch alder.
I also have an alternate scenario in mind: a couple of these new columnar apple trees (Scarlet and Golden Sentinel™) since this space offers protection from harsh winter winds and the brick keeps it a bit warmer than other spots around the yard. How awesome would it be to just walk out the back door and pick apples right there?
Needless to say, I have some decisions to make!