Perennial Garden Construction Photo Essay

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Phred

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My wife and I lived in Colorado for a few years before we moved to NJ. While there we stayed at my sisters house on the outskirts of Colorado Springs. Her yard was a wreck... Gardening was not her thing. When we got there she was on the east coast doing an internship so we had the place ourselves for the next few months. This thought kept going through my mind, “What if one of my friends saw me living in a place with a yard like this?” I decided to surprise her and fix it up before she got back. The following photos document the process from start to finish with the last photos taken two full seasons later.
THE FRONT YARD BEFORE
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I CUT A PATH FROM THE FRONT DOOR TO THE SIDE GATE AND INSTALLED A SMALL RETAINING WALL.
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I PLANTED HEAVILY AND WATERED THROUGH THE WINTER WHEN ABOVE 40° F. THE FOLLOWING PHOTOS ARE FROM THE FIRST GROWING SEASON?


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abax

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What a paradise for bees and butterflies. Love the bright touch of color with the poppies.
 

monocotman

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Fabulous. You didn’t say what your sister thought when she finally arrived home!
David
 

Phred

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Fabulous. You didn’t say what your sister thought when she finally arrived home!
David
She loves it and has done an okay job keeping up with it... I've been gone over 4 years now.
Is that a peach tree by the front door?
Hi Linus
Yes that is a peach tree. Survived the subzero winters there quite well but most years we got a late frost right in the middle of the bloom season. It also suffered severely from root nematodes so ultimately I had to remove it.
 

Tom-DE

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Phred, what is that plant(2nd photo, post #2)? maybe Indian paintbrush?
Any growing tips/experience with Rodgersia pinnata or Cimicifuga ramosa?
 
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Phred

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Phred, what is that plant(2nd photo, post #2)? maybe Indian paintbrush?
Any growing tips/experience with Rodgersia pinnata or Cimicifuga ramosa?
Hey Tom
That is Indian Paintbrush. I dont have personal experience with Rodgersia or Cimicifuga but I know Rodgersia pinnata prefers partial shade and more water. I had a fairly large collection of bog plants and some of my friends grew it in their bog gardens. As for Cimicifuga I've never grown it either but I know many people who do. It likes shade but not dry shade so put it where it won't have to compete with roots directly under mature trees.
 

Tom-DE

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Thank you, Phred. I got both of them last summer and planted them in the part shade...the Rodgersia pinnata was doing better than Cimicifuga ramosa. They are waiting for the spring now...I have been told they are not easy for the southern limit culture zone...will see.
 

Phred

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Here’s one of the back yard projects I did at my sisters house.
VIEW OF THE AREA
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Concrete pad for her blowup pool... lol. (She’s a short little lady)
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A friend was trashing a used gazebo so I snagged it... perfect size for the concrete pad.

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VOILA... OUTDOOR KITCHEN
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Tom-DE

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Beautiful! Very inspiring too.
It is warming up here now, so I start to focus on the garden...... and I cleaned up the gardens and transplanted a few shrubs today.
 
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