I am reclaiming 180 long x 30 feet high of terraces behind my house. All of it is not going to be planted intensely as flower beds, but certainly the lower levels. Each level is 4-6 feet front to back, and steps up 18-24 inches. I have been planting in 8-foot-long blocks of type/colors because small indfividual plants are going to get lost in the scope and size of this project.
Yellows/Oranges -- white triangle daylilies, happy returns daylilies, fooled you daylilies. early morning coreopsis, jethro tull coreopsis, traditional black eyed susan, sonora black eyed susan, large german yellow bearded iris, yellow yarrow
Red/Purples -- Pow Wow Wild Berry coneflowers, Magnus coneflowers, Purpetua (sp) coneflowers, Entrapment daylilies, Rosy Returns daylilies, large german purple & purple & white bearded iris,
Whites -- Pow Wow White coneflowers, Shasta daisies, large german white and purple & white bearded iris,
I'm buying based on what's on sale and what I can get 9-24 of. Everything needs to like dry conditions with terrific drainage once established. And be pretty maintenance free. I have some large junipers and althea/rose of sharon, and butterfly bushes (4 colors) already established here so am planting around them.
Looking for suggestions -- brighter colors show up better, must be super hardy and care free once established, and prefer prolific bloomers... Have considered seeds or annuals but not sure where to start.
Here is a snapshot of the middle of the terraces -- on the left you can see I've taken down most of the scrub and volunteers back to the fenceline. On the right is all the work to be done... They are 180 feet left to right. About at the halfway point here.
Here is an EARLY before of the left side and progress todate... in the early there was gravel and weeds. In the todate, I've cleared off most of the scrub, weeded, raked, hauled away, dug up the red clay in the beds to about 6 inches, hauled in 10 truck loads of mushroom compost and mixed, and mixed, and mixed, and planted, and mulched... Still a lot to do BEHIND, but I needed to see some pretty progress to keep me motivated.
Moonhowl, here is what I did to my Jethru Tull coreopsis (not on the terraces and didn't think to put any on the terraces because I was target locked apparently). This was right before the triple digit heat hit... I know, I know... but they were leggy and spindly and the blooms had fallen off, so I WHACKED 'EM... and gave them a boost of SuperThrive and water and am praying a lot...
So far as I can see, ya did just right by them. They will need a little supplemental water til they are well established, but that will soon be a mass of bright yellow blooms.
You have certainly accomplished a great deal. Good on you. That will be quite lovely and appealing.I do agree, you need to see some pretty to keep battling on...just the teasers that say there is a light and it isn't a train...GRIN
And here is the right side, I'm working my way from bottom to top, clearing a path to work. Some of the volunteer pines are already 16 feet tall -- thanks for holding the ground from washing, but you gotta GO!
Thanks so much for the encouragment. My morning walkabout to see what's blooming is a great start to the day. I try very hard, in that morning walk, NOT to "see" all the things that still need doing but to really take in the things I've already done. Flowers need so little to give back so much.
That has always been the hardest part for me...way to critical over what hasn't been done. Slowly but surely I am learning to see the beauty in the individual plant/bed and know the rest will get there...one day. From this point, each morning walk will only get better. One suggestion...do not forget to leave a little room for a few of the trailing annuals like alyssum, calibrachoa, and evolvolus...the evolvolus spreads well and is a lovely blue, calibrachoas come in a variety of colors and alyssum is so dainty. Also, consider the use of some grasses, especially toward the top. They come in some lovely colors (pink Muhly grass, Ribbon grass) and a variety of heights...8 inches to 8 feet...
I bought 3 red pampas -- because, well, because -- that I had to have but didn't know what I was going to do with them... of course they need to be up towards the top... LOL.
And yes, on the annuals, especially blues, and grasses, too. I just want to get the blocks of color going and make sure I'm not putting yellow next to yellow next to yellow if I can help it. Reds/purples, yellows/oranges, whites... annuals for blues.
And bulbs too when I get things established. Nothing cheerier after a dismal winter than courageous bulbs peeking up from the barren ground...
Have you thought about seeding in cosmos? Just gotta throw the seed on the ground water and stand back... I have a large patch that has gotten bigger over the past few years. Then last fall I planted in perenn, but did let some of the cosmos do their thing...I have bags of seed. Kathy
My garden early spring this year, 40 ft X 100 ft., west side
yup filling the flower beds can be a challenge, I grew most of my plants from seed in winter, (my 2 stands, homemade). If you allow some of that coreopsis go to seed, sprinkle arouns and watch the babies grow to make a patch..., I'm doing that with mine and also Scabiosa, Centaurea, Centranthus, Rudbeckia, Salvias, Penstemons, Hollyhocks, Achilea (the Colorado series reseeds, (yarrow)), and blue flax.
pix 3 Hesperis matronalis, started out with 50-75 plants and let it reseed...now 3 years later...and it smells sooooooogood.
I've been researching winter sowing and I can't get passed the idea that if I put the seeds where I want the adult plant to grow, that they should sprout THERE without the need for transplanting, etc. I mean, if they will sprout in a milk jug, they should sprout 10 feet away in the garden... maybe not as quickly, or maybe I could put the milk jug over the seeded spot for the mini greenhouse affect... or maybe just put the seeds out, label them and WATCH...
Love the blue/purple/lavender in your one picture -- gorgeous!