Any wanna-be landscapers here?

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Judy in IN, Jan 6, 2005.

  1. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm closing on this house at the end of the month. Since it's an old home in IN, I thought maybe a snowball bush on the side, or holly bushes out front? Does anyone have any suggestions?
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  2. diane

    diane Well-Known Member

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    Cool house but the photo doesn't tell me much about the front yard. How many feet from the road? I am a flower person so I would be going for hanging baskets or flowers in the summer and greenery in the winter. Maybe a tall arborvite at one corner with some climbing roses etc. to soften the lines. Then again, you could go with a formal english type look with a boxwood hedge and layer up some herbs etc.
     

  3. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

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    That is so pretty! And a blank slate!!! I would start with a picket fence to set the house off from the road. Maybe put in some stepping stone paths. An arbor with roses or grapes. A bench under the arbor. and do the whole yard like an English cottage garden with roses and hollyhocks and lupines and foxglove. And lots of daffodils and tulips for spring. Oh, you are going to have fun! Don't forget poppies, phlox, violets....
     
  4. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Diane, I will have to go out and pace off the distance to the road. We just did get the snow off the ground last week, and replaced it with rain. The house faces north, and although I love roses, they don't do very well in this area. I saw a Japanese Holly at Parks Seed website. Do you think that would do alright by the front door? The house was built in 1860, so I was thinking things like Hydrangea and Caladiums for color. I've never had much shade, so this will be a complete change for me.

    Cyngbaeld, I had thought that a low picket fence would be a nice touch. I want it to look inviting, although the front door isn't used. The side porch and garage will be the access to the house. There's an old brick summer kitchen out back that I thought would look nice with Hollyhocks. I don't know how much sun the front will get....time alone will tell...I'll try to plot out a yard area and make a diagram.....

    Thanks for the ideas!
     
  5. stumpyacres

    stumpyacres Well-Known Member

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    I got my holly from the woods - but pop told me that he has never found a holly with berries in the woods...I am putting in hostas on my north facing house...
     
  6. evermoor

    evermoor Well-Known Member

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    You need to consider a couple things before jumping into the landscaping. First, how much time do you plan on gardening? Are you looking for low maintanence or is that of no concern? If you are a beginning gardener I would suggest that the hydrangeas are a good choice. Indiana--I'm guessing zone 4 or 5 so this limits your hydrangea choices but Annabelle with the big limey/white blooms is a good choice also the new Endless Summer hydrangea with bluish flowers would be pretty and add color. Iris is also lower maintenance and the scent is heavenly. Peonies are also a good choice--but it takes them a little while to get established. If it's a windy site be careful with the caladiums, it will shred their leaves (plus you plant and disgard or dig and store them in the fall).
    Suggest:
    Flank both sides of the entry way with the Annabelles, then a clump of iris, in front of the iris some lambs ears, next a large clump of Patricia hardy geranium, next a sum & substance hosta and finish to the side of the house with more iris and lambs ears.

    It looks like there is an addition on the right side of the photo perhaps in this space (looks like a little corner) add a small architectural tree like a redbud. ie extend your flower bed from the straight line from the side of the house to a semicircle to the addition. Put in the tree and add more perennials (peonies etc.)
    Happy gardening!!
     
  7. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Evermoor, I've been looking at Hydrangeas just today! I like all your suggestions EXCEPT for the Lamb's Ears. I planted that in my last flowerbed, and had a constant battle pulling volunteers! I would let it bloom for my bees' enjoyment, then the next thing I would have seeds.

    I have some very nice Peonys at the old place that I'm going to dig.(Darker pink with white edging) I also have some Hostas that will come to the new place. I like the idea of the hardy geranium, but didn't consider it a shady-type plant. I've never had much shade to work with before.

    That little corner ends in a breezeway between the house and garage. I was thinking of some groundcover and maybe Bleeding Hearts along that east wall that gets no sun at all--something more appealing than moss...

    I like the idea of the Redbud. What a nice, native tree.

    I was considering a small water garden to the west of the house. There are 4 big maples shading that part of the house. I had a small pool with fountain at the old place. I really enjoyed it, but discovered that the tree frogs did too! It was like a frog nightclub! :eek: And soon, I had tadpoles! A lily pad made a beatiful picture with tiny green frogs upon it.

    However, one of the maples has lost big strips of bark, so I'm not sure at this point how much shade I'll really have there.

    I've never had Astilbe--could that be a good substitute for the Lamb's Ears?
     
  8. evermoor

    evermoor Well-Known Member

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    The Patricia hardy geranium is a sun plant but mine does ok with some shade. The bloom is reduced a little but when it does bloom with those magenta flowers it is well worth it!!! Putting the magenta geranium against the bluish foilage of the iris is a great combo and having the silver foilage of the lambs ears in front of the iris accents this combo. I understand your hesitation with the Stachys (lambs ears) but the shadier spot should help control their vigor. If nothing else i just mow over the more aggressive pieces that have headed for the lawn!

    If you still worry about the geraniums performance that would be a good place to sub in the astilbe.

    Good luck!
     
  9. Mid Tn Mama

    Mid Tn Mama Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I would put a crepe myrtle at each corner. Then in front and not lined up like soldiers I would put hydrangeas, azaleas and other flowering bushes. If you like the cottage look you could put flowers in front of those.

    Just think about how you will get mulch to those beds if you put a fence in--could you drive a small truck up to the beds and unload without a fence?
     
  10. inc

    inc Well-Known Member

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    "I love roses, they don't do very well in this area"

    darn tootin'! there are some rugosa/climber hybrids that are going around again- bout time they went adn started with rugosa in the rose biz( i wanted to be a rose breeder when i was a stupid youth)

    i cannot remembre what they are called eitehre- check jackson & perkins or- parks catalog, as well as thire clone wayside gardens. its a climber and a rugosa- so you will have that tousled wild rose gone on a drinking spree look.
    also a lot of pinks but what a good try at a decent climber!
    climbing rose- doesnt climb in your climate- but the super below zero hardies shouldbe able to be pruned up to a large bush size without sacrificing blooms. and they probably lhave come out with dozens more since i dropped off the face of the earth 11 years ago.
    hydrangeas a very good choice for a pair at yoru symetrical front door. no blue or pink in your area- try whites or Peegee or old fashioned snowball like grandma used to have- a big sturdy bush. they are brown twigs in winter soa pair of shorter hollies flanking the door might be nice- but- chekc out som eof the smaller leaved types. get a nice sheared matched set- we have some sort of small leaved 'ovata' probably, and its a privet like shrub, but evergreen. the poiinty leaves of the classic holly hybrids are needle sharp ad you have to prune, and touch a hundred stem tips on each shrub. you cannot shear becasue it chops off half the big holly leaves, and looks like it was shredded by a deer.
    both the above are good shrubs under big trees like the one that is gobbling all the water and nutrients in the left center of yard. you can dig out roots and make a special soil bed but you will be digging and removeing the roots every year. forgetit. go wit the easy- peegee, holly, privet, boxwood, Yew(poison berries! get males only- but still the plant is poison!!!!!)ad landscapeing for shade- hostas. which i really could use myself,,,,oh but if i onley had the money.
    you will pay well for the stuff you want- but a good framework of well trimmed shrubs is probably a good idea, worry aboutthe bleeding harts andthe ferny stuff when you get to trade plants.
    iris- the bearded classic ones are a big pain in the aster. i jsut cleaned up a bed of them in fall, boy did i get howled at for it.
    but i wasnt the one who chewed up al the roots, there is a worm that lives in the rootbulb and its inyour area. i chem-treat them and replant.
    i have abucket full of stupid iris here i want to just burn, but cant.
    please- plant easy stuff! in spring, invest in slug bait(poison!) and impatiens in several flats. no better color for a shady spot. spread your perfect soil in flat beds (dont evne dig it ini fyou dont have to) or put them in big big wide and low plastic pots- what a great lightweight invention, half garden soil and half potting soil. add water crystals if you got money to burn.
     
  11. Sylvia

    Sylvia Well-Known Member

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  12. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Hmmm, I didn't think crepe myrtles were very hardy. maybe I should refresh my memory.

    The fence would just be along the highway--just to frame the house. I could back a truck up from either east or west.
     
  13. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    inc, It isn't that we can't grow roses in the Midwest....It's that just about the time they start blooming well those darn Japanese Beetles show up for lunch! I do have a couple of heritage roses, and it's a constant battle with the beetles.

    I think I will go with Hydrangeas rather than holly at the front door....I've been stuck enough in life without inviting more! That's the same reason I don't do Barberry shrubs.

    I've never had a problem with borers in my Iris. It's just that the price they want for tubers on the net is outrageous! I think I'll go to the local Lowe's when they get their spring stuff in and look around.
     
  14. inc

    inc Well-Known Member

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    hydrangeas, pee gee type are a large shrub. you need a small one to 'frame the door'.
    the native type hollies have a small evergreen non pointy leaf adn ther may well be a non- holly like hybrid that will suit- thre strength of wilder holly is its ability to transplant, resistance to roadside condition, evergreen- and still in winter the thing looks fresh. we have no berries as plant is single.ours is cascading.
    holly can almost transpalnt as a rooted cutting.
    try boxwood- get a matched set. very dark green. you may want a third shrub on each side , evergreen, to frame the bottom of a hydrangea as its all pale buff sticks in the winter, from the road the peegee would look invisible there will be a visual 'hole' there. no! birdsnest! spruce!!!aaaggghhh!
    the shrubs will have to be fertilised more under the tree, the hydrangea in particular, and pruned to balance one anouther. peegee is a prune-after flower type.

    the rest- the big wide planters will be wonderful for new house, i have often thought about it. caladium or if enough light for coleus, tuck these in with impatiens for a predictable but colorful show.

    all the perenniasl will come intime- hosta and really tough fern will do there, but you can trade for them. if you have sun your options broaden and you do not need my help. with sun, fertiliser fixes a lot of things.
     
  15. Mid Tn Mama

    Mid Tn Mama Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have faerie roses and they bloom before AND AFTER the jps so it doesn't matter what damage they do and they can do lots. But mine bounce back and bloom profusely in the fall as well. I shake the JPs into a margarine container with water and a little oil. Then feed the jps to the chickens. Serves em right!
     
  16. dare2b

    dare2b crone

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    I'm prone to favor plants native to the area where I live because they thrive with little or no maintenance, require no fertilizing or irrigation, repel or are unattractive to pests, and attract butterflies and hummingbirds. Your county extension agent can help with suggestions and online links.