One of my summer projects this year has been to ‘redo’ my mother’s perennial flower bed. This bed, including the bushes around the outer edge, is a little shy of 3000 sq. ft. A pergola, wide paths, and over 200 plant types…needless to say, a bit of an undertaking. This bed was installed in 3 phases spanning 6 years.
Phase 1 – 2006
Brick around Beds A-C installed
Beds E – K put in
Phase 2 – 2007
Beds M & N put in
Phase 3 – 2009
Pergola (Bed O) Built
Bushes in Bed P put in
Bed L put in
Phase 4 – 2012
2012 marks the fourth phase where previous beds will be revisited, divided as needed, and inventoried. Bed D was installed with irises and Beds M & N will be rearranged to make walking through them easier and incorporate Bed P better.
The goals of this ongoing project are:
2) Preen and Mulch
4) Inventory (markers don’t last forever, whatever cute marker you make off of Pinterest)
Thanks to the mild winter, we began with revisiting Phase 1 beds in late February/early March. This part wasn’t too bad since most of the beds were in place, they just hadn’t been weeded for a couple of years. Extra plants were also removed that had sprouted or reseeded from parent plants. Regardless, there were many discussions of ‘Is this a plant?’ so flags were used to mark them to watch them grow.
Yellow = ‘Yes, it’s a plant’
Orange = ‘Yes, it’s a plant but it’s gotta go’
Pink = ‘Yes, it’s a plant but it needs to be moved’
The picture on the right shows the number of plants that were removed out of the bed. It was ridiculous.
Beds A-C include a bricked-in area that contains large container plants which are wintered over, ground cover, a red bud tree, and a new lawn swing. South of Bed C was an area covered in Ivy and Periwinkle. Mom has spent the past year or two killing it off, so we made it into an iris bed – shown as Bed D and contains about 24 different colors of iris. Bed D still needs to be lined with weed paper and mulched – this area will need to be watched since some weeds didn’t appreciate being vacated this year.
Other Tasks to complete, some may have to wait till fall or next spring to complete.
- Bed L will need to be redone yet, this involves moving a hardy hibiscus and some tiger lilies, so that won’t happen till this fall or perhaps next spring.
- Break up Beds M & N. Create walking paths into Bed P. Divide and add additional day lilies.
- Move plants between Beds J & M to make wide main path.
- Level, plastic/paper, preen and mulch paths between beds. Will need to be mulched again in the spring.
- Move additional bushes into section P.
- Dig up remaining periwinkle.
So needless to say, still lots to do. But here are some images of what we have done so far.