Catching up in the garden is it possible?

(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Yikes, what a year! Between the crazy weather and my big ideas, I've been feeling behind the 8 ball for months. But finally, this weekend I accomplished something I've been trying to get done for years! My long border on the lower lawn is done! Wow!

It happened in stages, of course. A lot of the work was done over the last 2 or 3 years, after the main borders were brought under control. The last and worst stage was at the far end, the tall grasses (and everything else) gone wild. I had it partly cleared a couple of years ago, but then had no time to do any more and it went wild again. This year I was determined. In April I had a guy come help me clear the mess again, and edit the grasses into something resembling a plan. Then I couldn't get back to it again. Two weeks ago, I got the guy back to help move and divide huge Daylily clumps. Two of my favorites were nearly buried in weeds in another section. He moved them out and cleared the area.

Then this weekend, I planted everything else.

The new plan is:

Tall grasses at one end and part way along the back. Phlox, asters and perennial Sunflowers finish the tall section, all the way to the right far corner, planted in a sweeping arc.

Then in front, Daylilies in a long swath. Early, middle and mid-late bloomers are now staggered so there will be no dead spots. I hope to add more late bloomers, but that can wait for a while. Then lots of iris, tall Siberians behind and continuing the line of daylilies to the Blue Garden /arbor. In front of the daylilies, Sedum and Tall bearded iris, Asclepias Tuberosa, others to be introduced over time. There ia a narrow path to the back of the bed.

Between the PG Hydrangea and the Blue Garden, are now 3 Hydrangea Little Lime, garden mums, Sedum Rosy Glow and more TBI's. I'm thinking to use Plumbago. ceratastigmoides as a groundcover under the shrubs, using the blue to help tie everything together. Other plants in the area will get spread around more, probably in the spring when I see what comes up.

So, for the moment, I'm caught up, at least there. Now I have to go up one level, and find room for more iris, more daylilies, move a couple of ginormous peonies, move a few phlox, re-arrange some edges , etc, etc, etc... Yikes!

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(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

There's always a job awaiting us if we stand still for five minutes, Pam, but you've worked wonders with your garden. It's such a joyful feeling to just stare and know it's done!

Stroudsburg, PA(Zone 6a)

Pam, what a job! It already looks great and I sure hope we will see lots of pictures as it matures. Doesn't it feel great to have such a finished space?

Stroudsburg, PA(Zone 6a)

Your young garden reminded me to look at my younger garden area. I have a picture of the first year and then a current picture about 8 years later. They are like children - they grow so fast!

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(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

So beautiful!

(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Rteets, It's great to see the before and after pictures. What a difference! It looks really great...

I can't wait until mine grows in. It does help that so many of the plants are mature, but there are still a lot of holes.

Here's some history:

1.: 2007
2,3: 2011 is when the clearing started. The climbing Hydrangea had nearly killed an Azalea. It's still recovering.
4,5: In 2012 the whole area filled in again with junk.. Eventually I cleared the central section and added an arbor. The Azalea was still bare sticks except for the ends of the branches, so I cut it back hard. This year it has lots of foliage, not sure if we'll get flowers next year or not.

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Kiowa, CO(Zone 5b)

Pam tell your guy to come over after your done with him..lol. Wow your pix are great!!! I look at them and see those big trees and sigh. I planted a Radiant Crab today and 10 shrubs, 1 dbl rosey pink Althea (rose of sharon) and 9 Viburnum carlessii (yummmm!!!). Only 14 more trees to go in and 52 more shrubs...and scads of perenns. And the long border needs weeding again, I haven't even cut back those that could continue blooming. Glad the gkids are back in school...lol.

The daylillies (15), I planted a few weeks ago are putting on new growth, so glad they are already mature so they should put on a great fragrant show next summer. And I still have atleast a dozen sitting in pots yet looking for a place in the border.

And I'm still potting up Iris that were dug in June.. So I guess I'm busy for a few weeks...lol.

Already used 1 gallon of Roundup and need more...Yikes, that stuff is stinky! (almost as bad as that little critter that's been visiting me these past few weeks..) Lol.

Did you get all those Iris planted yet? Should be done by now....I know...haha..

By the way, that little rose you sent me is blooming, such a pretty pink...Thankyou!!!

Rteets...Great pix, hope my shrubs look that good in 8 years!!! And my garden too..

Hey Pirl...how's that beautiful garden of yours doing this summer?

Pix is a patch of wild sunflowers, love them but their getting cut down to make room for those trees and shrubs. Later all....Kathy.

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Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Bit by bit by bit by bit. That's what I at least try to do. I put a lot of my lilies in too much shade. So I dug them up about a month ago, put them in pots, and am reinstalling them, a couple every few days. Some of my peonies are also in too much shade. SO I have been working on a new planting site for two weeks - bit by bit by bit.

My new yard had a bunch of trash trees - and a small ash! So I had them all taken out and the stumps ground down and I have just ordered 5 viburnums from Classic Viburnums to replace the mulberries and essentially big suckers. Thank goodness they are coming next April, so I can prepare the ground. Which is now free of tree trunks and stumps. The best $175 I ever spent. There were at least 20 stumps, some of them 5 inches across.

They are: Viburnum dentatum 'Chicago Lustre', Viburnum prunifolium 'Forest Rouge', 2 viburnum trilobum 'Compactum', Viburnum Sargenti ‘Chiquita’. I put in four viburnum plicatum tomentosum 'Pink Beauty' early in the season.

Only I will probably have ten roses coming then too, which is what they will be containerized ones from Roses Unlimited. My next project is taking out lawn for the half dozen peonies that are coming.

And then the installation of the grasses.

Bit by bit by bit.

Did I mention that I now get massage therapy every three weeks? This is what happens when you had a mature yard and are trying to create a new one 18 months into living in another house.

Clarksville, TN(Zone 7a)

Nice work on those gardens. Mine has gotten a lick and promise for awhile now, so come fall, I'll have a big job. Well, that's the life of a gardener.

Massage therapy sounds good!

(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

WWK, so glad the rose is happy, it's The Fairy :-)

Are your sunflowers H Laethyris? I have one plant, and I'm already worried that it's going to take over the world. This spring all of a sudden it was coming up in several places 3' from the main plant. It's only 2 years old! I moved it back into a corner, still full sun, and I'm watching it like a hawk, Roundup at the ready. My one Maximiliani is also exuberant, but is expanding in its clump.

All iris are planted, Halleluliah! Only 4 ended up in pots, along with another bunch I've been acquiring over the summer, waiting until I can get their spots ready.

I'm re-working the border along the top wall this year, yet again, hopefully for the last time. One end has always been alternating Daylilies and peonies half way down, then Siberian Iris from the big boxwood to the barrel. I'd like to unify the two sections into one long line of Iris, Peonies and Daylilies, with the SIBs staying in the wider section behind them.

I pushed the SIBs back and added Peonies and Daylilies to that section over the last couple of years, now I want to widen the narrow near end, spread out the Daylilies, and add TBIs to the whole line. I'm replacing one large white peony clump with Coral Charm, and adding the white to the far end.

I also plan to add later blooming daylilies, already have a few. I recently learned that these season extenders have been a focus of hybridizers since the 60's or 70's or so, long after my predecessor's time here. I'm sure he would have done it too.

Now that the weather has changed and the lower border is done (mostly, lol) I can get started!

1,2: The near end
3: The far end
4: The long view, 2012

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(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Donna, I'd love to see pics, it sounds like you're making great progress. Your old garden was lovely, I'm sure this one is already, too. And there's nothing like a good massage...

Stroudsburg, PA(Zone 6a)

Wow, Pam and Donna, the amount of work is astonishing, even to me! Thank you for the pictures, Pam. I can only imagine how beautiful it must be in person. Hurray to both of you for your vision and hard work!

Hillsborough, NC

Pam and Donna ~ your pictures have inspired me to get busy on my neglected garden areas this weekend! Thanks for the nudge. :-) You both have beautiful gardens!

Kiowa, CO(Zone 5b)

Donna... I agree, bit by bit.

Pam, no those are wild and just blew in..from who knows where. They line most of the county road this time of year... Just some of the wild flowers that fill our feilds here in the neiborhood. Some of the neighbors have feilds of wild lupine, some Indian Paitbrush. Me I have hundreds and hundreds of wild roses, Ratibida, Wild Lupine, Yucca filimintosa, a few Paintbrush, and also Wild Liatris in full bloom now, and various others I have yet to id. Oh and the sunflowers, which I have allowed to seed into the border. The Roses are my favs just for the fragrance....Yummm, it fills the air in June and is wonderful!!!
Pix 1 Echie Magnus
Pix 2 Does anyone know what Echie this is with the pointed petals, I'm thinking I like it..
Pix 3 Perennial Staice, Limonium latifolium, 36"x36"
Pix 4 Osteospurmum barberie, 'Lavender Mist', perennial osteo, which is in need of division as bloom is beginning to slow
Pix 5 Scabiosa columbaria, needs deadheading that or I'll have a bunch of babies come spring...

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(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Sigh... I do love seeing those wide open spaces of yours, Kathy!

OK, everyone... I do love my garden, working in it is a great pleasure, I never mean to deny that, or even diminish it by a tiny bit... BUT... Why, oh why, is the grass always greener??? I want everything I see in all your beautiful pictures!!!

OK, I know we all have to edit... And it is such source of inspiration that so many gardeners share their results-- good and bad-- I feel lucky to be part of the big picture here. And it is a very big picture, isn't it?!

But sometimes I really wish... What can I say, I'm not even sure what I wish! More gardens? More years ahead? Who knows!

Rofl....

Kiowa, CO(Zone 5b)

LOL..and here I'm trying to fill in those open spaces, I want me plants in he border touching each other...helps shade out the weeds and keeps the moisture where it belongs..

I want more years thanks!!! More gardens are in the process, we'll see what I can acomplish yet this season. Sure wish it would cool off tho!! All week in the 90*s, should be the lower 80*s here...

Cut down most of those Sunflowers today, took them to my daughters office and made bouquets for all the gals and they loved them. Amazing when I told them they were just weeds going to the compost pile. I did leave a few plants for next weeks garden clunb, it will be our annual plant sale. Oh no more plants will be coming home!!! Lol. Atleast they willbe cheap... usually less than $1. Have so see what I can round up to take with me... Kathy

(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Ha ha ha... Nothing coming home? Are you sure? I feel your pain, lol!

Someone just told me they've cleaned out their Plant Ghetto, just love that term. Mine is about to empty out for the first time since I-don't-know-when. I still have a bunch of stuff in pots, but over the next two weeks (I hope!) they will all find their homes.

BUT... I still have a couple of co-op orders coming... And we're leaving soon... Yikes!

Tomorrow morning, back to the garden for the long weekend, and I have big plans. And company coming. One likes to help in the garden, we'll see how much actually gets done.

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Pam, Donna and Kathy ~ You all have such lovely gardens. And lawn, too....WOW! Very nice....my garden beds have no lawn. We let the weeds dry up in summer. It looks like lawn in spring, and we keep it mowed. It is hard enough to keep all the borders watered. Do you all have watering systems? I know you have a lot more rain where you live. I need watering systems for my beds and borders.

(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Here in CT we get more rain than I was used to on the east end of Long Island, NY, where the summer drought could last 8-12 weeks. It was enough for many wonderful plants to survive without supplemental watering for nearly a decade between owners.. But it's still not quite enough to guarantee survival of everything I've planted. I do nothing for the lawn (verrrry weedy, if you look closely), only for my babies. If it's green this month, it must have rained ;-)

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

I started all over again at my new house. The first photo is in spring, and shows plantings of Campanula Bellringers, Campanula Bernice, Nepeta Joanna Reed, Nepeta Six Hills Giants (the last two were gifts!), digitalis Grandiflora and fragaria vescan Reugen. My yard is in several distinct sections, so I actually have four or five minigardens, some in sun, some in shade. This is a section of the yard that can be seen from the street, so it needs to look nice all the time, and it is in full sun. (picture 1)

I put tough plants against the front - ones that never look bad but can be trampled. Baptisia australis and geranium Bevans Variety, keeping the peony further back, along with a new Rose de Rescht (pic 2)

I put back some of my old favs, like Campanula Bernice and fragaris vesca reugen (pic 3)

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(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Donna, you've already done wonderful things at your new garden, I've gotten great ideas from you. Now I'm going to have to get Campanula Bellringer-- but not so fast, I have a ton of stuff to get done before we leave, no new plants unless I catch up.

One step forward, two steps back... We came up for a long weekend, and I worked really hard for two days. I moved a gazillion peonies and several other things, including rocks and newspaper for the path. It's been raining ever since, so I didn't get to finish planting or spread the mulch. And we leave again tomorrow. Grrrrr!

So I've been working on my records, trying to keep track of where I put everything. I finally have great garden markers from Everlast, hairpin style with zinc plates, and laminated Ptouch labels. But I still need plans. So I've been playing with an app on the iPad to put labels on my pictures. I had so much stuff on there that the app kept crashing, but I finally got what I wanted.

(Pam) Warren, CT(Zone 5b)

Oops-didn't post!

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