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Yes I know for a fact this is gonna create "rock envy" in RCN48! Some of you may have seen some before pics last year and had questions about the hardscape. Well take a walk up the hill with me. The entrance between the white pines.
Always loved the look of Augusta National Golf Course during the Master's and wanted my own "Augusta" bed. Two Heucheras and the rest are azaleas and a Cherokee Princess dogwood just done in the past two weeks. Really hope I'm around long enough to see this one mature!
As usual you have done a wonderful job. Everything looks really good. I am taking ideas from you since I have a blank slate for a woodland garden. I hope to start on it before the end of summer. We have the same taste in shade plants. Love your "Augusta National" azalea bed. :-)
Doug - have you been growing the celandine poppy for a while? I had heard that it can be invasive but I've had mine in the ground for about 4 or 5 years and only started seeing seedlings from it last year. I do like the yellow in the shady garden.
My celandine poppies reseed avidly, but they are easy to pull,
so I haven't considered them a problem yet. But admittedly, they are everywhere...
I never planted mine, they came along with the house 15yrs ago.
I have a 2-acre wooded lot. It was completely choked w/ invasive honeysuckle.
Like Doug, I worked for years to gradually clear out the jungle to create an open woodland.
Like magic, a million woodland wildflowers appeared out of nowhere.
I have celandine poppies, mayapples, trilliums, phlox, jack-in-the-pulpit popping up everywhere.
It still requires constant surveillance to keep the jungle at bay,
since that honeysuckle aggressively reappears also.
Doug, yes, I have solomon seals. And of course virginia bluebells doing their thing right now.
And geraneums, also blooming now. And bloodroot, of course.
This is a picture of the wild phlox which showed up after I cleared the choking honeysuckle out of the woods.
Whaaaaa, I don't think we have VA Bluebells here...at least I haven't seen any. Lots of bloodroot, though. Funny, most of that is done blooming, but yesterday I ran across a patch that is still going! We have a bumper crop of trout lilies this year, which are one of my favorites.
The native trillium have multiplied here - spotted leaves and maroon flowers. I wasn't aware that VA bluebells and blood root were natives in the midwest - at least south of here. Should I stop feeling guilty because the bluebells have "escaped" from my garden and are now growing in the high spots of the wooded wetlands?
Did someone call my name? LOL And yes, I DO have serious "rock envy" :( I remember the pictures of this area when you first started working on it - you've done an amazing job! Lovely plantings but you know what I zoom in on first - the rocks! I've been eyeing some in the creek that would look spectacular where I need them but I can't figure out how to heave them up over the 10' bank! I think I need one of those ramps, you know the kind that has rollers on it? I could just turn it on, load the rocks and they'd fall off at the top of the slope! Yeah right, in my dreams :(
Cindy, I've got tons of native bloodroot and bluebells both.
I used to carefully avoid injuring them while planting other plants.
I've given up worrying about it, since they're everywhere.
Here's a spread of bloodroot earlier this spring.
Doug - thanks for the reference. Have bookmarked that one - will definitely come in handy. Especially since I'm trying to id a native wildflower here that I can't quite figure out. Might have to take a pic and post it.
Weerobin - Beautiful pic. Did you have to lay on the ground to get that angle? :) Blood root flowers are some of the first flowers I look for in the spring. I originally planted a group of them together and it was a really nice sight but over the years, they've migrated to other spots in the garden. Just as nice to see unexpected flowers show up elsewhere.
Cindy, I have to thank RCN or Stormy - I think it was one of them, but I don't remember for sure.
My new camera (Coolpix P100) has a swivel LCD display which allows you to take ground-level pix even if your knees won't allow you to bend at the required angle. I really like it.
I'm in awe of what you've accomplished! I've been following this project all along and I love to look at "before/after" photos. Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't this the same slope and JUST a year ago? http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/fp.php?pid=6526860 Amazing! Aside from the "rock envy" I love what you've created and it's no wonder your gardens were the talk of the town after the tour :)
KyWoods, mine was covered in poison ivy until late last summer when the project was started. Yes this has all been done in less than 10 months, all the path and rock work, all the planting and mulching. During the tour everyone said what a lot of work it was and I just replied that it's not work if you enjoy it! They kept asking how many YEARS it took me to complete it and I just laughed at their expressions when I told them how new it actually was. Here's another pic of the before looking between the pine trees leading into the woodland area
Debbie, yes that's the same slope, only a little more sparse! Praise from you means a lot to me considering the pics Iíve seen of your gardens. I WILL see them in person.
Judy, thank you for the compliments! Yes I am quite proud of it and love showing it off. The Garden Tour group has already said they want to come back in a few years when it matures.
Cindy, yes I love the blue bench also. The hardest thing about the whole project was finding new places to sit, relax and just enjoy the view while constructing it. Every time I'd complete a section, I'd find a new favorite place to sit!!!
postmandug wrote:Spectracide Brush Killer and bare handed pulling it up! I very rarely get a rash from it.
I agree, you must be tough! After years of never having a problem with it I've had two serious PI encounters in recent years and now I think all I have to do is look at it! I think one of things that impresses me the most about your new woodland garden is how neat everything looks :) I tend to cram way too many plants into an area because I want instant gratification and then end up paying for it in a couple of years when they outgrow their space!
Doug, looks great. I know what a lot of work it represents,
but I know what you mean about not really work when you enjoy it!
I made paths through my woodland and lined the paths with a thick layer of woodchips,
like in your pictures. I had a bunch of trees thinned a few years ago to let more light in,
so had them save me the chips.
I recall spreading over 200 wheelbarrows of chips along the paths over the winter.
But as you know, wood chips break down over time, so now my paths have the best soil in my yard!
When I run into mucky soil in the garden, it's awfully tempting to plant the path!
I haven't replenished the woodchips yet - I keep meaning to,
but there always seem to be other priorities.
I have heard people who clear their breaking-down chips from the paths into the garden at end of season, and replenish. But I never seem to have the energy at the end of the season!
I'll be interested to see how your woodland garden progresses. Again, it looks great!
PI! Ugh. Had my first case in the winter we moved in, pulling leafless roots and stems from my future lower garden during a January thaw. Always on the lookout for it here as there are new seedlings every year. Have to wear gloves all the time while gardening.
Wee, as I told RCN, coming from you with one of the nicest gardens I've seen the praise means a lot to me!
Debbie, I look at nature and see things scattered about not crammed together and that's how I try to plant. I know it will mature into something a little tighter in a few years but for now I'm fine with it. (Except for the wild ginger and wild hydrangeas I have sitting in water waiting to be put in the ground up there somewhere...) I still have areas around the outside fringes that are prime for adding to so I can still expand. But for the moment it's a little break from the tour and the heat before I start on a bridge across the gully down below and an Asian style garden adjacent to the woodland area with a JM already planted to celebrate our 20th anniversary back in April.
The bridge will be across the gully where you see the the rocks between the chips on either end of the path. Still haven't decided if I'm gonna do a waterfall or just create a dry streambed there. It gets a lot of water thru there in heavy rains so I'm leaning towards the dry.
A bridge with w/ an asian garden??? I can't stand it !! Where do you find the time, energy, etc.. ?
I'm busy enough trying to keep weeds at bay, rescue plants from all sorts of other nefarious varmints,
not to mention mulching, watering, pruning ... and sqeezing it all into weekends, of course.
I'd love to have an asian garden...
I'll have to rely on yours, since I don't see it materializing anytime soon in my yard.
I'm sure you'll keep us posted on your progress!
I agree with Weerobin, it's exhausting just seeing what you've accomplished in a year! But I WILL look forward to seeing your progress on this new project :) My plan for a "disappearing stream" has been on hold for almost three years and even though I haven't totally given up on the idea Rick is trying to convince me to switch the "dream" to a dry creek bed :( It will be interesting to follow along and see what you decide to do with your area!
I tried a 'dry stream' idea a few years ago. A fairly amusing fiasco. We have a wooden extension off our porch which could conceivably look like a asian-style bridge. So I put small smooth black stones on both sides trying to look like a dry stream passing under the wooden extension. I had a couple chinese paper-bark birches and a couple japanese maples. Variegated liriope lined the 'stream' banks. It looked great for about a minute. But as it evolved, it never lived up to the image in my imagination. One of the birches died, the other is chlorotic and pitiful-looking, the JM's have outgrown their space, and I'm sure no one looking at it would guess in a million years that it's supposed to be a dry stream-bed. Ah, well... So I've pretty much given up on the idea.
I like the dry stream idea, especially for a hillside.
I have a short, "imitation" dry stream under a downspout at the corner of my house. Since there's a garden bed about 6 to 8 ft deep wrapping around the house and on to around the patio, I was racking my brain trying to think of an attractive way to handle the water from the downspout. I put in a dry creek bed with an irregular, curvy shape, lined with one of those pond liners and pea gravel, along with various sized rocks scattered about. Carries the water at least 6 to 7 ft away from the house and even looks nice when it's not wet.
Sounds nice Cindy, I think I remember seeing pictures of it on the original "Astilbe" thread? I might end up with a combination - start out with a dry stream bed and instead of the hassle of digging for the pump, etc. just install a small pool of water where it ends. Of course I'll have to keep filling it with water and I won't "hear" the water tumbling over the rocks :( Biggest problem right now is finding the rocks. The local stone place went bankrupt over the winter and the closest source to buy stones now is over an hour away!
rcn - I had thought about turning my little dry stream bed into a water feature with a pump but it went beyond my impatience level at the time (I get hung up on getting things "done"). It's just as well since I think our winters might take a toll on it. It does have a basin at the end so water does stand for a day or so and then drains out (I've probably poked holes accidentally in the liner over the years). With our mosquitoes here, I guess it's just as well that it drains.
Cindy, your "impatience level" sounds similar to Rick's! LOL I'm not saying my dream of a disappearing stream is ever going to be a reality but I AM a patient person :) I don't have problems with mosquitoes but I do have to be a little more creative with the design now that my pest (aka our dog, Lucy) has developed the habit of plunking herself in the middle of any water on the property!
You're right about that! Even the dog refused to walk very far outside today!
Let's see, if it took you ten months for about an acre, and we have 25 acres, that would take me...sheesh, I better get started, I'm already 53 years old, lol.
KyWoods is right about the weeding.
As massive as the clearing job is, maintaining it is also an ongoing challenge.
Turn your back on it for a second, and it tries to revert to jungle!
Latent honeysuckles lurk everywhere around here...
I used to walk the beautiful Nipmuck trail quite a bit a few years back, and your woodland garden reminds me of that. You have an amazing garden and I am so glad I found this thread...thanks for posting!
Since my parents have gotten older (76), the place has really suffered from neglect, and it's overwhelming for just one person. We need a whole team of landscapers to live here on the property and work every day!
That reminds me, I gotta check yesterday's lottery ticket...
Oh! Don't misinterpret my comparison as a criticism please. I loved the Nipmuck Trail, and it is full of beautuful brooks, fields, and meadows, with beautiful plants and flowers, and stone walls, etc. It is quite beautiful, and nature does a pretty good job of keeping it groomed.