Wednesday, May 26, 2010

At the Door

The bed along the front of the house is finished also. When we moved in the roses and shrubs were here but the grass crept in. I have filled it in with perennials, edged and mulched it.

This Cushion Spurge~ Euphorbia epithymoides is like having a wee sun right outside my door.

It makes me smile every time I come home.

I am thinking of planting more Columbine~ Aquilegia caerules as I find the star shaped flowers so pretty.

Shells from a recent beach walk.

I think it is so important to clean up any landscaping that you see everyday. Walking past weeds from hell and choking perennials everyday does nothing for the spirit!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Shade Garden

This is one part of the berm that is actually almost all done. I am very excited about that!!

This area faces the dining room so it really needed to be recreated as I faced it at every meal.
It is the only spot on the property that is a shaded bed and I wish I had more. I like lush, earthy feel of shade plants.

I planted these Bergenia last year and they are looking wonderful.

I have some grass on the left that I have to remove this year and I also need to mulch it too.

I also ordered some lilies to plant under this birch as there are a few there already. That way I'll dig that part, take out the weeds and grass and plant the bulbs.

That makes one section down, about 50 to go. ;)

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Come with me for a walk

This morning I decided to take a walk around the dreaded berm.
This area is the bane of my existence and I have pictured myself bulldozing the whole thing over many, many times.

This is it from of front bedroom window. It is actually part of our front yard as our home is passive solar and faces south, not the road. I is something I see every time I look outside.

Rarely do I look at it in all it's entirety as it causes too much stress. When I do a walk-around, I normally focus on some new greenery or blooms.

This area is at the back and faces a huge field. It will be the last place I tackle. There were many perennials planted here when we first moved in and I tried to save as many as I could. The berm was not properly edged or mulched so the weeds and grass took over. The previous owner also planted many shade loving plants on this south facing slope. They fried pretty quickly.

These Goatsbeard~ Aruncus dioicus are still doing wonderfully even though they are normally a shade loving plant. They don't bloom very long though in this much sun. I moved a baby one over to my side bed last year, I am anxious to see if it will bloom longer as it will have more dappled shade.

The next few pictures show all of the shrubs that have exploded. They were planted way too close together and are now reaching a critical mass. There are probably 40+ shrubs planted in this end of the berm.

We have been pruning them back but they grow very fast.

In the middle area, I have managed to save more perennials as there are less shrubs there and more trees.

The Vinca minor is spreading nicely.

What really makes me mad are the trees he planted in the middle of fast growing willow.
There are two Chestnut trees that are stunted and being swallowed by willow.

I have contemplated cutting some of the willows down as they grow so very fast but I can't bring myself to do it.

Here are the crazy willows.

I wouldn't mind one but we have eight.

That concluded the tour. I will not be taking this again this year. Time to focus on the small scale and what I can actually accomplish this year.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

How This Mess All Started

From April to November, my spare time is spend trying to tame my 2.5 acre property. We bought this house in 2001, in February. The owners were landscapers and bragged that they had done $35,000 worth of work to the land. We thought that was a dream come true. We were so wrong. Part of the big *work* done was ripping out what was already here. The previous owners, who had built the home and raised their children here had done a lot of loving work, making their home a woodland escape. They had a huge veggie garden, gorgeous rock garden, herb garden, fruit trees, circular birch grove with sitting area and flower beds. We know this as the people just built a new house down the road and they told us what the property used to look like.

The new owners bought the place and set to work bulldozing everything down. EVERYTHING! They only left a few large trees and a pine windbreak. They wanted to give the place an updated, modern look as they were opening their landscaping business here. Their business failed a few years later and they ended up leaving the country to avoid angry customers and creditors.

So we were left with huge flower beds and a large berm that was over planted and under mulched. There was also areas that were dug up and left that just filled in with thistles and wild weeds. One area was supposed to have been planted with hundreds of bulbs but only a handful ever came up. Slowly, everything became wild. Add to the mix two babies and that is a recipe for disaster. After a few years, I hated the place and wanted to move. I tried keeping up with the weeding but it was a lost cause. Everything I planted got choked out.

I then decided to look at this as a ten year project and tackle it piece by piece. I am trying to focus on what has been accomplished and not on what's left to do. This blog will help me highlight the positive.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

O Happy Day!

Welcome to Verdant Wilds. This will be my blog of all things wild and lush both in my mind and in my yard! Exercising my green thumb and woolly crafts are ways for me to express my creativity. I will be using this blog to explore both of these and anything else that strikes my fancy.