Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Trouble Free Gardens on a Budget "Part Three"

Who says Weeds Can't be Beautiful!!
Look at this wonderful tall plant....with the yellow flowers at the top....I think it's great!
Several of these have sprung up in front of my gardens by the barn.  I knew they were going to be great so I left them alone.  I think they are around 12 feet tall. 
My friend Gloria says it is called Mullein

I have several different color Hydrangea plants and several different types.  It helps to add interest to the garden when you have the same plant in several varieties.

 These are a variety called Lace Cap.  The blooms are entirely different and don't last as long

I also wanted to show you two of my Rose of Sharon that have just started to bloom this very morning

A few years ago I had a great idea that 
didn't cost me a penny. 
 We have a large barn roof that sends sheets of water down when it rains and washes out the driveway and the grasses below.  I started to collect rocks to make what I call my waterfall.  It took about 2 years to collect these rocks.  Every time I went out, I would look for rocks.  My husband thought I was completely nuts!
Some days I got 2 or 3.  Other times I would come home with a dozen.  You'd be surprised where you find rocks if you are really looking for them.  It really wasn't any work and it was a lot of fun.  Now my husband thinks I flood the upper driveway with this invention....I don't think that's true, but he is convinced....


Monday, July 11, 2011

Trouble Free Gardens on a Budget "Part Two"

When planting my gardens, the easiest way to have almost instant gratification, is to place Hydrangeas in several places along a fence or the side of the house
Hydrangeas bloom for a long period of time and can serve as a colorful backdrop or can stand alone.  They grow equally well in the shade or the sun.  They need very little care.
People often receive small Hydrangea plants as gifts on holidays and never get around to planting them, but they are great for planting.
I have an annual planted in the fishes mouth that blooms all summer
On the opposite side I have several colors of 1/2 price Roses I bought at the end of the season several years ago.  The Roses will continue to bloom throughout the summer.   In the forefront there are  Iris  that were given to me by a friend (people always have Iris bulbs to give away) They have already bloomed.
The trees that have not bloomed yet are Rose of Sharon of which I have many.  They bloom in many pastel colors.  They also bloom for an extended period.  The shoots are great for trading with other gardeners.  They require no maintenance except in late March I like to cut them back so they stay very full.  You can keep them cut back into a bush or let them grow into larger trees.
Grasses also make a great backdrop for color.  Although they don't flower, they look beautiful blowing in the wind.  The pink Coneflowers look great in the forefront.  I encourage people to buy plants that spread.  I started with one Coneflower and look how it has spread.  They are easily transplanted and I have put the offshoots in several other places
Here, the fence makes a great backdrop....and my favorite sign "SUMMER RULES"
looks just perfect here. This particular garden needs a few more plants.  It is a shady place and Hostas are excellent for shade and have many varieties of leaves as seen in the next photo.  They also flower on long stems.  If you cut the flower stems when the flowers are spent, they will re-flower in several weeks.  This garden is less than 2 summers old and has filled in quite nicely.
 Since so many people were interested in the pond information, I will expand on that along with ground covers next time.  Ground covers are great fillers and come in many varieties and colors and function as well as flowering plants in the garden.