22 September 2011

end of summer to-do list

  • have exterior drainage checked and/or cleaned
  • arrange for new gutter and downspout installation
  • finish painting shed
  • sand and stain front and back wood doors
  • get quotes for adding to rock retaining wall in back yard
  • clean out birdfeeders
  • order new drapery and hardware for both sliding glass doors
  • fix wood trim around new staircase

Okay so by 'end of summer' I suppose I'm realistically meaning the beginning of fall, which will probably drag onto after Christmas.  Always so much to do.

Last weekend I had a really good start to the back garden makeover and moved the large sword fern (which took about 4 hours with three people), the japanese maple, spanish lavender, and transplanted a whole bunch of goodies from my mom's garden.  I still have some space to fill though, especially when the dahlias are finished and cut back for the year.  I'm not in a huge rush to finish filling these sparse areas because a lot of the plants I still want are best planted in early spring.

I added a limelight hydrangea, some japanese blood grass, a purple hebe, daylilies, and some other (temporary) grasses and fillers.  I still have to remove the eucalyptus, dahlias, carex grasses, and hostas before I decide what else to add!  This rain is definitely hampering the motivation levels, but it's also been good to slow down and think about placement before rushing into anything!

What I've planted so far doesn't have much winter interest, which is also something to keep in mind.  They nursery owner was really pushing for heathers and dwarf conifers, because of the year-round interest and ease of maintenance they provide.  I wasn't really sold on this idea, until I found this image below of a frosty January border filled with heathers, Mexican feather grass, and a variety of conifers.  Different heathers have a variety of different blooming times, so all year round you can have some rotating bursts of color. 

Looks great here, but not sure about taking it to this extent in my garden (for right now, at least!).  It's a really different look from the lush plantings I have now.  But always good to have some inspirational images of different ideas for future use. 

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