April 30, 2016

Easiest Garden Ever!

by Toni Leland

If you love a beautiful garden, but don't have the time, energy, or ability to maintain one – here's a foolproof small garden to fix that problem. Once these easy-to-grow-and-maintain plants are in the ground, you can sit back year after year and enjoy the beauty.
Easy perennial garden
July of first year

The secret is using plants that all require the same light exposure, water, and nutrition. This garden is a full south exposure with intense sun. Soaker hoses under the mulch keep the soil moist in the heat. Most of the plants in this 60 square foot garden don't require deadheading or special treatment. What could be easier? Planned to provide color and foliage from May through October, all that's required is the initial planning and planting.

Several of the plants in the sample garden here have the added bonus of spreading and/or reseeding themselves, so each year, your garden becomes fuller. A couple varieties need some light housekeeping to maintain aesthetics, but nothing strenuous or requiring large amounts of time. 
Here are my suggestions to recreate this particular garden, but you could use other varieties, as you choose.
liles and gladiolas
  • Asiatic and Oriental Lilies for height - blooms June through August (Remove spent flowers)
  • Peony (small variety) for corner anchor shrub - blooms May, provides glossy green foliage through season
  • Clematis on trellis (this one camouflages the downspout) - blooms May/June depending on variety
  • Iris - blooms May, early June
  • Knock-out Rose - blooms June through first frost
  • Daylilies - bloom June through August (Remove spent flowers)
  • Jacob's Ladder - blooms April/May; often reblooms in summer if sheared back
  • Speedwell Veronica - blooms June/July; reseeds
  • Campanula - blooms June through August; spreads easily
  • Coreopsis - blooms May through August or September, especially if sheared back

Asiatic and oriental lilies
White Lily 'Casa Blanca' and 'Stargazer'
Add some garden art, stepping stones, and hummingbird feeders and you'll have a gorgeous view!

This garden also has some gladiolas along the back, and a small Rose of Sharon tree that is kept pruned for size. The glad bulbs will not overwinter, but they added some height at the back of the planting. A florist's miniature rose has made it through three winters!

For early spring color, plant daffodil, hyacinth, and crocus bulbs in spaces between the perennials. 

In late summer, as the daylilies finish, place containers in the bare spots to extend the lush look of your garden. Coleus works beautifully for this, and lasts until the first frost. Pots of mums could also be interspersed among the foliage.

fall perennial garden
Gorgeous bloom right through September/October every year!

The following images are close-ups of the plants in my easiest-ever garden. Enjoy!

peony with fountain
Peony 'Festiva Maxima' is gorgeous behind the fountain

peony with clematis
Clematis 'H.F. Young' camouflages the downspout

Coreopsis and yellow iris
Bright yellow Iris and Coreopsis really pop

Knock out rose
Double Knock-out Roses are all-time easy and gorgeous!

Daylily 'Cherry Cheeks' Hemerocallis
Daylily 'Cherry Cheeks' (Hemerocallis)

Daylily 'Gentle Humor' Hemerocallis
Daylily 'Gentle Humor' (Hemerocallis)

Daylily 'Strawberry Fields Forever'  Hemerocallis
Daylily 'Strawberry Fields Forever' (Hemerocallis)

Daylily 'Show Winner' Hemerocallis
Daylily 'Show Winner' (Hemerocallis)

Jacob's Ladder (Polemonium caeruleum)
Jacob's Ladder (Polemonium caeruleum)

Speedwell Veronica
Speedwell Veronica

Clustered Bellflower (Campanula glomerata)
Clustered Bellflower (Campanula glomerata)

miniature rose
Miniature florist's rose that grew and grew!

lavender and white gladiolas with purple throats
Though they don't overwinter, Glads provide a gorgeous display

No comments:

Post a Comment