It’s nearly the end of May and planting is nearly finished. I started dreaming about improving our outdoor landscaping in February. Over the winter, I browsed online catalogs by the dozens and made a list of plants and flowers for all sides of our condo.
We have three sides to landscape: front, westside tree island, and the backyard that is divided into another tree island and flower beds on either side of the deck stairs. It was an expensive plant shopping spree!
I’ll start here in the front. I planted pink echinacea the first summer in 2014 on the driveway side of the bed. And I’ve planted another Indiana native that looks like yellow echinacea. I don’t remember what’s it called. Both are fabulous and healthy. I love echinacea.
Just outside the living room window are three Bobo® hydrangeas. Bobo’s grow 3 feet tall and 3 feet wide and tolerate full sun. Perfect for this 14′ garden space with a southern exposure. I haven’t decided on short perennials to plant in front. I’m leaning toward some sort of salvia or lavender. The panicles of the hydrangea bloom white and turn pink as the season progresses. Literature boasts this hydrangea will become full with blooms from the ground to the top of the plant. Can’t wait. Yes, I decided to buy starter perennials to save money to buy more plants for the rest of the landscaping. I love hydrangeas!
Planters for The Front
This planter sits on one of my front steps. Everything here gets full or part sun. So I chose Licorice Splash (helichrysum petiolare), Sunsatia Lemon (nemesia), and the sweetest pink supertunia Vista Bubblegum. The filler in the back is alternanthera known for their colorful leaves, apparently. We’ll see.
Yes, I have a real problem. I love flowers. I love to put together planters. My problem is I cannot pick just one plant. I tend to build planters with lots of different plants. Clearly demonstrated in this picture and those following.
The next planter and its fraternal twin sit outside my garage door in little flowerbeds on either side of the driveway. I call these planters “fraternal” because they are identical except for colors of the supertunias. A bellflower, Caroline, sits in the middle surrounded by supertunia Latte, supertunia Picasso in Blue, and blue lobelia. The twin has supertunia Pretty Much Picasso that has a pink center rather than purple. The bellflower is a perennial that I will plant in a backyard bed in the fall.
I have one stepping stone in the front between two peonies. I started using it to host a flat bowl planter. In this one there’s Lemon Coral (sedum mexicanum), Serenity, a dark purple osteospermum, and one lonely dalhia – Lisa Dark Pink – as an afterthought. I took this picture a couple of weeks ago. The planter is much fuller now and the Lemon Coral is beginning to overtake the flowers in the center. I’ll rethink the way I use Lemon Coral next year. It is spectacular, worthy of a planter all of its own.
Front Hanging Basket
The front of the house gets so much sun! It’s hard to do more than one hanging basket. Even the most drought, heat-tolerant plants wither up and die. They’re also hard to water. But this basket is on the west side of my front door and is protected from the hottest summer sun. Lucky me!
I went nuts. Lucky lantana is sweet with light pink and yellow blooms, Superbells Holy Moly!™, Lemon Sunsatia (nemesia), and Calypso™ Jumbo White Bacopa. The bacopa succumbed because I didn’t get it in the basket soon enough. Oh well, I’ll get a replacement.
Here’s a picture of a front yard plant. I have no idea what it is, but mid-summer the leaves die back and 2′ spikes emerge topped with green berry-like looking things that turn bright orange-red. Then the spikes die back and the foliage returns. I’m stumped. Do you know what this plant might be?
I’ll share the other beds in future posts along with monthly “What are they doing now?” photos.
How is your garden growing?