Help with my little garden?

I put my pictures on the desktop, I hope there are not too many for this thread, dont know the rules:)So here goes.Hopefully the first pics show it as it is now, the ones from last year are the ones in almost full growth. I woud like to streamline it a bit, So much GRASS is growing in the areas, and I can't easily get down and get up. (tho with bypass surgery last Oct it should be easier, who knows)Alyssum usually fills in all over the place, almost making it look too crowded. The daylilies and hostas do well, and they are already coming up.
Should I take out the curved cement and fill in with sod? That is mostly the trouble spot for grass filling in. I just have sedums there and a barberry bush . But what about around the tree in the back? We have old chips there now, and it looks pretty bad, but the Krauter Plum sends suckers up constantly and I (groan) have to get down to cut them. Plus that tree drips with aphids, but not for very long, and doesnt seem to hurt anything.The main area in front is about 8 ft wide, plenty of hostas and daylilies. But I think it could look better, more fun, and clever?
Hubs brought out all the pots and just put them on the path until we decide what we are going to do. I think I just want to display the blue ceramic pots only , at least there. So they look planned and in synch.But I wasnt happy with the way they were arranged last year.
I just need to get this easier for me to take care of. Any suggestions are very welcome. BTW..hubs HATES yard work, does the garden out of love for me, but would rather it be easier. I always get, "What's wronnng with it"?
I had a hard time doing these photos, I had to do them one by one from the desktop, last time I didnt have to do that.So I didnt post all that I wanted or even the best ones, they are so small. yes , technophobe here.
Suggestions appreciated!
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, waiting for ideas before everythign starts growing again lilies are up and hostas peeking up
waiting for ideas...before everythign starts growing again. lilies are up and hostas peeking up
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, looks pretty dismal here now but this is where the hostas live under the shade this is my primary view my deck is straight across from this this bush hides the neighbors unkempt trailer when it is in leaf About 8 ft wide to the path in front of my deck porch
looks pretty dismal here now. but this is where the hostas live , under the shade. this is my primary view, my deck is straight across from this, this bush hides the neighbors unkempt trailer when it is in leaf.About 8 ft wide to the path in front of my deck/porch.
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, I just dont know whether to keep this or tear out the cement curb and put sod in I get overwhelmed with grass growing in Weeds i can handle grass is everywhere Krauter plum in background
I just dont know whether to keep this or tear out the cement curb and put sod in.I get overwhelmed with grass growing in. Weeds i can handle, grass is everywhere. Krauter plum in background.
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, From the plum tree looking toward our house blue is neighbors bahhumbug
From the plum tree looking toward our house, blue is neighbors, bahhumbug.
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, Last year in bloom until the grass took over and it got so crowded Alyssum fills in every spot bless its heart
Last year, in bloom , until the grass took over and it got so crowded. Alyssum fills in every spot, bless its heart!
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, How can I arrange these pots in a clever attractive way
How can I arrange these pots in a clever attractive way?
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, back view again
back view again..
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, This spot tear it out
This spot..tear it out?
q help with my little garden, flowers, gardening, last year
last year,
  36 answers
  • 3po3 3po3 on Apr 09, 2012
    I think you sell yourself short on several counts, Bernice. The photos look fine, and your garden looks nice when it is in full bloom, which is about all any of us can ask for. I would leave the cement because I'm not a fan of sod, but of course it's easier to keep wet and healthy in Washington than in the high desert out here. As for the grass coming through, I buried half my lawn under newspaper and mulch a couple of years ago. The grass never came back. Can't say the same for the bindweed, but that's a different story. As you said, weeds are sometimes easier to manage. You might try laying down a few layers of newspaper and some mulch in all those grass-infested spots.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 09, 2012
    Thanks Steve, it seems the grass likes to come up in the middle of the daylilies and sedums. Right through the plant. We do get some rain here, but not much, Yakima is desert, irrigated from the water run off from the mountains and also the Columbia river. Apple land. Seattle and the west coast have the wetness, tho i recently found out they have droughts in the summer! A big huh! from me! Dried out lawns because it is so expensive to water their lawns.
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Apr 10, 2012
    I agree with Steve that you are selling yourself short, Bernice. I've made a few comments on your individual photos, but it seems to me that what you most need are a few more evergreens to give your garden some more structure and to help screen your neighbor in the winter.
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Apr 10, 2012
    Call it "gardening" rather than yard work. Makes it more enjoyable.
  • Miriam Illions Miriam Illions on Apr 10, 2012
    I just want to say that I think your garden is lovely!
  • Evelyn R Evelyn R on Apr 10, 2012
    You might throw a couple of ferns in the main garden for height. A package of Chinese Forget-Me-Nots will keep you in pretty early spring blue little plants that reseed. I love seeing them wherever they pop up. You've got a very nice collection of pots and I agree they need to be grouped instead of strung out. Long term, even the newspaper is going to break down. If that long garden is killing your back and wearing you out, get rid of it. Use some of the ideas here to add color - groups of pots (3 or 4 make a nice group), get a couple of old grills and use them as planters, look for something long to use as a planter. Some clumps of iris would add height and color. Maybe ornamental grass? Your main garden is beautiful in bloom.
  • 3po3 3po3 on Apr 10, 2012
    I tried to post this last night, but it seems that I failed for some reason. I kind of try to ignore some of the grasses that come up through the middle of the plant. They are much less annoying once you get rid of all the outliers.
  • Carla H Carla H on Apr 10, 2012
    I think I'm the only Seattle resident that waters my lawn in the summer, it's the only time I get to walk on it without shoes and I don't like painful dead grass, lol.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 10, 2012
    @Carla...I saw dried lawns in Seattle when I went to the VA hospital.. it blew my mind! I never knew that, and the tech said it was because of drought and the price of watering lawns.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 11, 2012 funny..that long stretch DID HAVE Iris all the way down when we first moved in. They were my former neighbor's. She pulled them all out, I would have left them. I have Iris under the tree in the back, and by the lattice fencing.See pic 5 Iris are one of my favorite plants and flowers. The purples have such wonderful fragrances. I pick a few before all the blooms fill out, and bring them in the house , put them in water and watch them bloom one by one. It is too hot here for ferns, for the most part they dont thrive except on the north sides of the houses. @Steve, ha, I do try to ignore the grass , it is the clumps that get me. Also my neighbor has that creeping morning glory,( that 's what I call it.)And it creeps right into my hens and chickens. (she doesnt care.) So much bending, so little bend! Well, I still need more ideas for the long stretch and how to arrange just the blue ceramic pots. And Put the others elsewhere.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 11, 2012
    I was just looking at Ken's straw bale gardening..remember that thread? What do you think of using bales in that long stretch? Would "Moon flower "work in it? (that is what I know it by. I used to have them, big fragrant and lovely. But big! )But they take a long time to appear. I asked him in a post if the bales last from year to year , (havent heard yet)or do you need to get new ones in the spring, anyone know?
  • T A T T A T on Apr 11, 2012
    I have learned finally to plant according to the amount of heat/shade/water etc. a bed will have.....almost instant success!
  • Sherrie S Sherrie S on Apr 13, 2012
    Bernice H, your pictures of the little garden last year show what a good job you did with the plants. It was lovely and will be again. We all have a lot of work to do this year to get the yard in shape. I use roundup around the outside of my concrete beds which kills a little grass but keeps it out of the beds.
  • Evelyn R Evelyn R on Apr 13, 2012
    Have you ever used Preen? It'll prevent weeds from growing up to 3 mo. but won't kill those already growing.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 14, 2012
    Well I have used Preen, but my problem is grass growing in the garden. does it work on that?
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Apr 14, 2012
    Preen suppresses the germination of seeds. It doesn't care what kind of seeds they are.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 16, 2012
    I commented on some of the pictures' comments..thank you all. I think I was a little impatient, because stuff is happening now, except for that strip. So it doesnt look so desolate anymore.I think I will get some Iris tho, they should crowd out the grass once they take hold. And what i like about Iris, is , they stay green here in winter almost all the way through. They dont get icky looking until Feb or March, but then new growth starts soon after that. I don't cut them back after blooming, I love the green blades, summer and winter. And I see little alyssum Plants starting too. So tiny! But the center strip! hhmmm Iris and Alyssum?That is the hot side, South and west.
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Apr 16, 2012
    If the center strip is hot and dry, try a combination of yarrow, echinacea and sedum.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 16, 2012
    Thanks Douglas.. .btw, my crabapple tree is just getting its buds for flowers, when I saw leaves first come on, I thought , "oh boy now what have I done? I ruined the flowers", forgetting on this one, the leaves come first , then the flowers. I will post a picture, it is glorious when it blooms, especially next to neighbor's blue house.
  • Evelyn R Evelyn R on Apr 16, 2012
    I agree with Douglas - was going to suggest yarrow (there's all kinds of colors) and echinacea - the birds love the seeds. How about a beautiful lavender plant somewhere there? Moss rose loves those conditions and mine is always reseeding.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 16, 2012
    yesss...I forgot about moss rose! Tho I usually put them in pots..I will have to look up yarrow, dont know what it looks like. Now I need a strong hunky guy to help me! :)
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 20, 2012
    Thanks for the answers, but I'm still hoping for more ideas. Since I havent done anything yet, hubs back is really hurting, and he is the muscle here!
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Apr 20, 2012
    I will have to share a photo of my crabapple when it actually blooms. Had rain yesterday, today sun, so it shouldn't be long now! It makes me so happy, and hangs on bloomwise for quite a while too.
  • Peggy Peggy on Jul 09, 2014
    Your picture of your garden is beautiful! I love the curved cement path and would not remove any of it. I would remove the large pot and replace it with your biggest blue pot. Then I would pick three of your favorite remaining blue pots and group them together with some colorful annuals. I think that would be all the pots I would use. Too many pots takes away from the beauty of the garden and the pots you choose to use. Kill the grass with round-up then spread Preen. It should help. Please post pictures when everything is in bloom this year!
  • Valerie Valerie on Jul 09, 2014
    I think you have a good structure, and would definitely keep the curved cement, as it gives the area a nice flow. What about using blocks to raise the height of some of your pots, and concentrating on making a feature out of them. Use your existing stepping stones to facilitate access. I personally think that the garden looked lovely when it bloomed last year, but if you are having difficulties getting up and down, planting in the ground might not be your best option. I do hope that you make a full recovery!
  • Joyce Sobczyk Joyce Sobczyk on Jul 09, 2014
    I would add hostas around the trees to fill in some of that space. You planters that you ask for help with just need to be filled up more with some lush greens and color. I myself have had a lot of luck this year with succulents. Love them!
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Jul 11, 2014
    @Joyce Sobczyk @Valerie @Peggy @Douglas Hunt PICTURES ....Update on "my LIttle Garden"..This year 2014 I didn't do anything out there, health, too much going on with other family I just moved some things around, and let it grow...everything is volunteer except for the hostas, which need to be divided. I like the fountain /succulent planter I painted when I was painting EVERYTHING a couple of years ago! Just 3 blue pots near the fencing, but they are now hardly visible. Hostas love this area, further down is too hot and sunny! nothing really thrives down there except the strangling "morning glory" weed. If I thought we were staying 'another 18 years here', I would make a raised garden, don't know how the mhome park would feel abut that tho. Thanks for the suggestions ladies. oops trouble sending pics see next post!! aacckkk!
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Jul 11, 2014
    Wow! did I have a lot of trouble sending these pics!
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Jul 11, 2014
    @Miriam I Where did my new pictures go? Good gravy! Btw...hi.....hope all is well with you!
  • Kris Lee Kris Lee on Jul 11, 2014
    I would be careful w/Yarrow. It is invasive and I have it completely taking over my lawn right now. If you can keep it contained it is quite pretty, but I don't like the smell. More of a weed than a flower to keep, in my humble opinion. Good luck w/your space It is really pretty and looks great to me. I like the comment on grouping your pots and using elevations to help make it more dramatic. On getting help? I would contact a local church and see if they have any youth willing to do service work...Could be a great solution, and you can just supervise. :)
  • Carol Lindahl Carol Lindahl on Jul 22, 2014
    I have gotten rid of all pots, except a couple on my deck for stuff that has to come inside during the winter, ie hibiscus. Have you considered yellow d'oro lilies along the edge or the other striped ones that put up little purple flowers, variegated liriope? We also used tall black eyed susans and they are really going to town, along with white shasta daisies. I also love huchera, which comes in all sorts of colors. The lime ones are really great for a color pop. I need to add some red to different areas and want to know what your red plant is and if it is an annual or perennial? I'm doing my darndest to use all perennials. I already have several red knock out roses but need another smaller plant like the one you show, that will take more shade. I finally found a lacy fern like my grandmom had and it's a perennial. I agree that you should leave the edging. You can also kill grass by laying cardboard on for awhile. I have back problems, so have one of those kneelers that can be flipped to sit on. And I also got a tractor scoot that I can sit on and either scoot along as I'm weeding, or get up and move it to the next area. Another thing that you could do is talk to a landscape architect and pay him for a plan, but do the installation yourself. For your little area, it shouldn't be too expensive. I too love sedum, oh heck, I just love flowers. I've added a raised bed vegetable garden out in front of the house and then had flowers planted in front of it to kind of hide it from the street. Now I've added another raised bed in the back yard where a tree was removed and am considering another one for next year next to it. I know, I'm nuts, but it's the best therapy, playing in the dirt. :) Good luck with your garden and also you health issues etc.
    • See 4 previous
    • Carol Lindahl Carol Lindahl on Aug 22, 2014
      @Bernice H Ohhh, ok. I've never seen them with that many flowers. I have some little ones that the squirrels keep digging up, darn their hides. :) Guess I'd better give them some food and maybe they'll do better. Thanks!! I picked up some more coneflowers last week and will plant them next week when we have a break in this darned heat. Couldn't find any small ones, but some mid sized which will be ok in the back yard. Need the shorter ones out front and so far haven't been able to get the seeds from the plant to sprout. Guess I'm not holding my tongue just right when I plant them. :)
  • Elizabeth Elizabeth on May 04, 2015
    I looked thru all your photographs....I think last years picture (at full growth) is beautiful. I would just use some bark chips in all the bare places and put it up around all the plants and that will make it look way better. You maybe use too many pots, try to tone it down a bit.....pack up 2/3 of them and store them somewhere. You need a common theme throughout, either common colors with another contrast color and stick to that. Otherwise I was pleasantly surprised by the picture of last year.
  • Dorothy Collett Dorothy Collett on Jun 28, 2015
    Pots do raise up the work area when you can't get up and down! Keep em all and try other things that make gardening easier for you. What you have looks wonderful in your small space. Things to try with those beautiful blue pots: 1) stack either two upright one inside other, 2) one flipped to use as base for other, 3) back ones in group raised on wall stones.
  • Bernice H Bernice H on Jun 28, 2015
    Thanks @dorothy Dorothy ,I sold my spot and my mhome recently. Temps have been in the 100' idont know how it is faring any more.
  • Ann Davis Ann Davis on Oct 13, 2016
    My advice to you is to put in more plants. Is it sun garden or shade garden? You have hostas which do best in shade. However, I personally do not see any yarrow. It is an almost silver-green in color and can have blooms of many different colors. It is actually a medicinal herb and has many uses. Do a little research you may find a use which will be helpful to you. I noticed you have several quite large pots with plants in them. I would drill 4-5 holes in bottom if not already with drainage holes and put some yarrow in it and plant in ground. You do not have to take up in winter. Other herbs you may like are rosemary, thyme, basil and oregano (plant all same way). Not only are they beautiful, they are wonderful for cooking or even when you pass by and brush them they release a wonderful odor--they are also lovely cut and mixed with cut flowers--scent your whole house! As far as the grass it is probably Burmuda or Cenipede both of which I hate for that very reason. It takes a little work but once you get it all out of your garden, when grass is cut look for runners into garden and remove immediately. You can keep under control this way. Before winter I would rake good and get some peat moss (Home Depot, Lowe's, Aces, etc. quite cheap) and some landscape fabric, rake bare soil with garden rake to loosen up soil, add layer of peat thick layer, then put down landscape fabric (buy pins also) being sure to cut holes where you have plants then cover with mulch. If you cannot afford to buy enough mulch to put down 2" layer get a couple bales of pinestraw and put that down it will do the same thing. If you want more plants they should be planted before you do any of the above. You might see if there is a garden club in your area where members swap or just give away bulbs, rizones (iris so gorgeous) or cuttings such as hydranga, azaleas, daylilies, daises, peonies, etc. (whatever is free) and ask for help with a planting diagram. You will be surprised how beautiful your garden will be. Another thing to remember is that it takes about five (5) years for a perennial garden to reach full potential. Don't pull it out, just do your best to make sure the soil is loose (adding peat does that--don't even have to dig in) and keep watered. You might want to add a few annuals each spring for growing season until your permanent garden grows. Good luck!
    • Bernice H Bernice H on Oct 13, 2016
      Thank you Ann. However that wasin 2012...not an issue any more. we have sold and moved on..but the buyer has let everything overgrow and go wild, they like it that way!