This morning after having a conversation with my daughter while I was staring out the window I noticed that the small border in front of the house was getting more than a little messy. And so, with it being so bright and sunny and yet cool and crisp, I decided to get outside and tidy it up a little.
However… When I came outside a wild thought came to mind and I decided to do a little bit of a make over while I was working the bed anyway!
To be honest I have never been happy with the border in the front garden. For a start it’s in almost permanent shade. The whole area only gets direct sun for about an hour first thing in the morning in the winter and even in the height of summer that plot only gets sun up till 8am, about 2 hours total and even then it’s really only the corner piece that gets it. Just as a point… This was where the sun line was at 9am when I was working on it.
In the border there was a mix of Wallflowers, Foxgloves, an odd Lupin and some Calendulas along with an Athyrium niponicum ‘Ursula’s Red’ at the far end and 2 perennial Geraniums and 3 Hucheras. There is also a few bulbs in there… I think they are Alliums but I don’t recall.
The first job was to clear out everything that I didn’t want.
I kept the Athyrium in it’s current place. It’s doing fairly nice there and to be honest, if it ain’t broke, don’t try to fix it!
The annuals, Foxgloves, Lupin and Wallflowers all came out. As did all the weeds and moss that had grown around them. Being careful with the bulbs I fluffed up the soil a little where I could and evened it off a little.
If you are paying attention you will see that I have 3 gaps between the fence uprights, 3 Huchera and only 2 perennial Geraniums. Dangit!
Yep… I needed to go find an other perennial Geranium from somewhere in the garden.
Anyway. I cut the plant in half and took the front bit. I tidied the remaining plant up a little and moved it back to the plot I was working on.
I positioned the plants in a couple of places to see what I liked. In the end I settled with what you see to the left.
All told it’s very simple idea… The Huchera behind, because it’s a taller plant, and the Geranium in front. If I’d more of them or these plants had been more mature, I would have made them into two plants in front of the Huchera.
The Geraniums were given a quick fluff before planting in, but in all honesty they didn’t need anything other than the one plant I took from the other side of the garden and even that only needed the bits I had cut through removing.
And there I was, done! (Apart from the standard rubbish)
Actually as you can plainly see there is plenty more to do. I have been looking at a few nice Hostas, mainly Hosta fortunei ‘Albopicta’ and Hosta ‘Pathfinder’. I wanted Hostas that are brighter than the ones I have at the mo, and I have to admit that I do like the fire-like variegation on the Pathfinder… Not only that but it’s fairly cheap!
My other option is the Hosta ‘Halcyon’ blue. It may not be something to brighten the plot but it would contrast the green of the Geraniums for sure!
Now… My big problem with all this is that the fact that this plot is near always shaded and a little damp it’s just a magnet for slugs and snails, however I’m hoping that the smell from the perennial Geraniums will, if nothing else, at least deter the majority of them. We shall see.
My last quandary is just what to plant next to the gate? That gate swings wide and so it will need to be either low growing or made of rubber! Not only that but it will have to be able to suffer shade. I do have an Astilbe chinensis, that doesn’t mind shade. I may well move that.