Last week Mark was away on a trip and I was left alone to walk the grounds with my failing cannon camera and our trusty dog Rocco. I thought you might want to come along as well.
When stepping out the front door we always turn to the left. For some reason this is where the tour always begins. The lilacs are in bloom and the ajuga is sending up spikes of purple from the dirt. This is one of my absolute favorite ground covers because of its subtle purple-green-brown leaves. When not blooming it creates a wonderful cover but doesn't detract from the greenery around it. Also along this bed we have the largest lavender plant I have ever grown and I continue to tie it up and together each year. Then there are the bearded iris and hostas in the back with oxalis lining the front.
As we step under the trellis there is a bit of construction going on to the left. Because it is facing the north, the ground is almost always in shadow. The continual freezes have turned the old brick into garbage so we are slowly replacing it as we have time. On hot summer days it is our favorite place to sit and look out onto the side yard ringed in crabapple trees.
Surrounding the brick are various ferns Mark has collected, a light blue mop head hydrangea, forget me nots, babies tears (my other favorite cover), azaleas, sea thrift and a white oak leafed hydrangea.
Continue past the side yard to round the house and you can choose to either walk down a stone path to the right with some of our more exotic plants I have no idea the names of or straight to the back patio. Above the first two photos are of the path. The solar light along the path is fantastic. I only purchased a few at the end of last years season at Target just to try out and love them. They are only $2 each and I'll be getting more this year. For such little things they put out a lot of light and don't take batteries like some of the larger ones.
The third is of our new hops our friend Tom gave us. Mark has been tying up this along with the purple clematis every other day since they are growing at least 6" a day in this weather. For this we just use old nylons or leggings. In the past we have tired plastic twist ties, nails and twine but they only damage the plant and create a lot of clean up and fuss come fall.
Mixing up my photos a bit but the first one is of our glorious David's Eye out front. We brought this over as just a sickly little thing from out city house and now it spans at least 6' in diameter. The second photo is an example of why NOT to get cats. Every tree must be wrapped to keep our little lady from tearing them up. I finally ended the poo by scattering my coffee grounds all over as well. The plants at the base of this catsura tree are native geraniums that were already flourishing in the field. The base of all of our landscaping is native, native, native. They take little to no care and are not at all invasive.
And to end the tour I avoid the veggie garden and the guilt it induces and just bring you round robin. The south face of the house is still in shadow on these early mornings but as the sun shine it is teared in colors. In the front are seasonal tulips that give way to white, pink and red peonies. We rescued the original plants from a few little spikes forcing their way out of the gravel at one of Marks previous job sites. Then we have a few asters, lavenders, astilby, bridal bushes, my one astounding fig tree given to us by a friend as a house warming gift, and a solid row of lilacs surrounding the outer wall of the house.
In the background you can see a rose arbor which will soon be covered in light pink old roses and at the end, the billowing mound of green is another native wild rose in white cut wind and create a feeling of being fenced in.
I tried last night to sketch out a detailed map of the yards but it's a bit more complicated then I thought. I'll try to hammer something out soon though.
I hope you enjoyed out little walk and I'll bring you more snap shots of the garden soon.