Last weekend, we planted the Red Twig Dogwood shrubs and the Prairiefire Crabapple tree. I'm wanting to make a rough path from the pool house out to Max's Garden so that the garden doesn't look like Las Vegas plopped in the middle of the Mojave Desert. I want to tie it in more to the rest of the goings-on in the yard.
To do this, I'm going to plant ornamental trees and shrubs and mulch the larger area that they will encompass. Specimen perennials will be dotted here and there and some colorful annuals here and there as well. Max's Garden is cottage-style, with lots of things crammed into it, but this new approach to the garden will be more open, creating more of a transition from the big expanse of grass to the jam-packed garden.
Oh dear. This sounds like I'm designing something, doesn't it?
Okay, so I am. I talked to Mom about this and a couple of other ideas I have and that's when I realized that I have now reached the point where I know about a great deal about a lot of plants - what they look like, their growth habits, their water and sun needs, etc. When I started gardening in 2005, I knew next to nothing.
Funny how learning changes you in oh so subtle ways that you don't realize until one day you wake up and you know things you didn't know just a short while ago, and you're actually utilizing what you've learned. That's why this summer, I'm able to design the areas I am. But if I had to sit down and put a plan on paper, I still couldn't do it.
My design strategy starts with me seeing an area that looks like it's lacking something. Then I throw around different scenarios in my head and try to visualize what each would look like. Once I've settled on an idea, I try to figure out how I can incorporate some of the new plants I don't own but have been drooling over. Rarely will my initial idea be what I end up with, because I keep an open mind and my design evolves as I execute it.
So, my apologies for that rant I went on a couple of months ago. I know that each and every article I've seen on garden design has played a part in my education that has led to my becoming a designer of sorts here in my own garden.