Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Making a garden out back

A while back I found some interlocking cement items cast aside along one of the edges of our back yard. I decided to reclaim them and use them to create a raised perennial garden. I wanted to raise the garden because the maze of tree roots back there make digging one very difficult. I brought in a load of triple mix, and spent part of the day moving it from front to back, supervised my our bear of a puppy.

The whole back yard is quite shady, and with all the mature trees around, I decided to make a garden with a woodland feel. I planted some of the big ostrich ferns. These get up to 4 feet tall and are quite dramatic. They're also the ferns used as edible fiddleheads in Southern Ontario.

Spicecat gave me a container with two plants in it. One is Lysimachia ciliata "Firecracker", a native wildflower known as fringed loosestrife (not to be confused with purple loosestrife, an invasive weed in Ontario). The other plant in the bucket is Polyganatum, or Solomon's Seal, a herbaceous plant of the lily family.

I added three different Coral Bells. I had Coral Bells at Blackthorn, in the partial shade of a Japanese Maple. Based on that experience, I think this spot should have enough light for these plants. At least I hope so.

I planted one red-leafed Mukdenia "Karasuba". I think this plant would like more sun than I have but I think it will tolerate our conditions OK.

I planted half a dozen little Labrador Violets in the biggest holes.

Finally, I planted two Foxgloves, a Camelot Rose Foxglove and a Camelot Lavender Foxglove.

It still looks pretty empty, but give it some time, and it should make a fine garden. In the meantime, I may supplement it with a few annuals for colour.

Looks like rain tonight. Perfect.


Wandering Coyote said...

Nice job! I love the edging, and I love raised beds - way better for the back.

Word verification = fight

L.M. said...

I've had great results with Solomon's Seal in the shady part of my back yard.

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwww! Memphis!

S.M. Elliott said...

Is the pup, um, fertilzing your garden?

As much as I despise gardening, all these pics and wonderful growing things are making me wonder what I'm missing!

Ron Moorby said...

I can't get rid of the Solomon's Seal - it's rampaging across the garden. Edible ferns sound interesting - how much do you get? Salad or vegetable?

mister anchovy said...

Well Ron, here's the thing... I don't know anybody that actually eats the things. Usually people who do eat them gather them in a forest where there are zillions of them. The idea is that you pick them when they look like little fiddleheads sticking out of the ground in the spring. I think they are usually sauteed, but as I say, I just KNOW they're edible...that isn't the same as eating them.

SME, gardening can be a lot of fun and very rewarding. On the other hand, it takes work and patience and some dedication. A lot of people just want the results, but really gardening isn't so much about the results as it is about the process.

sp said...

How exciting to be starting a new garden.
Foxgloves are so beautiful. They are my new favorite flower. I can't wait to see more pictures.

It looks like a puppy sprung up in your garden. How fortunate.

Anonymous said...

the puppy looks pretty happy