small, young azaleas...what to plant around them

North Little Rock, AR

here's my situation...new to gardening and landscapes...we planted these encore azaleas (white about 10" tall, pink about 16" tall) as foundation plants I guess. Now I want something to plant around the azaleas to fill in the bed a bit. in this pic the bed is 24' long with the most narrow part being 3.5' wide and the widest part is about 9'. the wide part is partial sun and the narrow part is full sun (so the suncalc says). the azaleas are about 3' apart. there's also a garnet japanese maple. we just had the rock put in a few days ago by a landscaper, but i want to learn to garden and whatnot so i'm attempting to plant the stuff myself. oh, and the soil is alkaline (trying to amend that). zone 7.

Thumbnail by MCCHICKENN
North Little Rock, AR

another view.

Thumbnail by MCCHICKENN
North Little Rock, AR

this is the other end of the house. it's partial shade. the little tree is a dogwood. the azaleas are 3-4' apart here and the little things next to the dogwood are even smaller azaleas. this bed is about 16' long and about 8' deep in the middle. i figured i'd plant some hostas. i like caladiums but i wasn't sure if they'd tower over the azaleas when they got bigger and if that would look weird.

Thumbnail by MCCHICKENN
North Little Rock, AR

Oh and here is the terrible drawing on graph paper i did to show the rock guy what area i wanted done. each square is *about* 2 feet.

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Ferndale, AR(Zone 7b)

Hi MCCHICKENN, we're practically neighbors! You have the beginnings of some nice beds. The maple will be beautiful and provide nice shade for your azaleas. When you mentioned considering hostas because caladiums may tower over your azaleas, I thought I'd share this photo of hostas that got as big as my mature azaleas. Hostas can get really big!

Thumbnail by fleursdefouquet
Piedmont, SC(Zone 7b)

Spiderwort, Catmint, Blue Star Lithodora, Sedum Autumn Joy and Dianthus are some good choices for our zone.

Vicksburg, MS(Zone 8a)

Have you considered growing a ground cover around them? I have vinca minor which looks real pretty since it blooms the same time as my azaleas. Of course, if you don't like vinca, there are lots of other ground covers you can choose from. I have tall ferns behind the azaleas which gives a nice cool look during the heat of summer.

North Little Rock, AR

fleursdefouquet, yes, we are almost neighbors. i live in lakewood. i think i used to take riding lessons as a kid at a stable by ferndale. i can't remember the name though.

so far i'm just planting some groupings of sun annuals in the empty spots. i made a hosta garden around my tree. when you just have one of a plant is it called a specimen? well anyway i bought one of each of some blues, yellows, and greens. i'm trying to decide on what groundcovers to get.

Ferndale, AR(Zone 7b)

You are definitely neighbors with duckmother (Kim). She lives in Lakewood and rehabs wood ducks. Sometimes other ducks and geese.

North Little Rock, AR(Zone 7b)

Hi McChickenn, I live close to lake #1. Where are you? You need to come to our plant swap in May. You can get all kinds of free plants, lots of great food and meet all of us!

Kim

North Little Rock, AR

i live on lakeview...close to lake 1 also. this is my first year to attempt gardening. where is the plant swap? all of my plants are small and young so i wouldn't have anything to contribute. :) what do you take to a plant swap? i just planted a hosta garden today.

Thumbnail by MCCHICKENN
Ferndale, AR(Zone 7b)

Your hostas look great. You do not have to bring plants to come to the Round-Up. But I promise you will go home with plants! I sent you a dmail with a link to the info thread but in case you didn't get it ... http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/960154/. Join us if you can!

North Little Rock, AR(Zone 7b)

I live at the bottom of snake hill.

North Little Rock, AR

i hate that hill. i made the mistake of walking my dog down waterside almost to lakewood gardens and was worn out by the time i had to walk back up that hill. it was terrible. i live 4 houses from fairway/avondale.

North Little Rock, AR(Zone 7b)

Wow! We are really neighbors!

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