Planting in Teak Wood Planters!

A while back Teak Closeouts sent me several samples to try out and see if I could use in the garden. They carry a really neat line of products that general come from overstock teak wood products and sell it at better prices.  They also have other products made from teak root which can be very interesting when used for gardening applications! I turned most of the products they sent me into planters for the garden. Teak is a very sturdy and rot resistant wood which is why it has a lot of uses in the garden. Putting these together gave me another great excuse to buy plants for the garden! One can never have enough rosemary, so I planted a rosemary into this little container. Rosemary is a great plant for the kitchen and we now have it conveniently on a table just outside the patio door. A large…

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The Shady Side Garden – Remodeling Begins

I'm only a little of the way into a remodel of our side garden but I thought I'd show you what there is to see so far.  Our side garden connects the front yard (and arbor) to the back yard and was designed several years ago to eventually become a shady location for hydrangeas and hostas.  Since it takes time for trees to grow I had to wait on planting those hydrangeas and hostas until after the crape myrtles and redbuds grew large enough to create shade.  So I planted caryopteris.  Caryopteris is a great plant for sunny locations.  It's a perennial/shrub that blooms prolifically in the fall, usually around September here in TN.  My caryopteris plants have suffered this year though without enough light to grow well.  That was my signal.  It was time to redo the garden.   I spent some time over the last week removing the…

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Creating a Deer Resistant Shade Garden (Part 2)

A shade garden just isn't a shade garden without plants right? So what plants should get planted in a deer proof garden? Oops I said proof again. Nothing is 100% proof against a deer. Resistant is a better word. So let's try this again.  What kind of plants should be planted in a deer resistant shade garden?  Surprisingly there are quite a few good deer resistant candidates for shade gardens.  Take heucheras for instance.  Heucheras or coral bells are fantastic plants for shade gardens.  Heucheras like it dry, have quite a few colors to make things interesting, and can take the damage from deer and rabbits once established.  They also aren't extremely tasty for deer either! In addition to heucheras, hellebores are very deer resistant. In fact the foliage is poisonous so deer really won't want to nibble on them very much. There a quite a few other plants possible…

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Creating a Deer Resistant Shade Garden! (Part 1)

I've always loved shade gardens.  Foliage plants like hostas and heucheras are two of my favorite types of plants and I just don't have enough space in my yard for them.  The other issue I have is deer.  They've eaten many of my plants over the years.  They love sampling a little bit of everything in the garden and there truly are few plants that are 100% deer proof.  But there are ways to make a garden resistant to deer to minimize their damage.  For my Lowe's Creative Ideas project this month I've set about to solve my deer problem by creating a deer resistant shade garden.  All the materials for the setup of this garden were purchased at our local Lowe's and paid for by Lowe's Creative Ideas. To create a deer resistant garden of any kind you have to do several things: plant the right plants, disguise the…

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Clearing a Shady Area for a Garden

In the very back of our property we have a shady area.  It's about the only shady area that has occured naturally in our landscape.  A mixture of walnut, sassafras, hackberry, and maple trees create a shade area that until recently was completely unusable!  It was a problem area in our landscape which I thought would make a great subject for my next Lowe's Creative Ideas project.  Why is this area a problem?  First of all it's an area I would like to utilize for growing more plants (mostly heucheras and hostas).  But also because it has housed a couple invasive plants that really need removed from our property: Japanese honeysuckle and poison ivy!  Brushy area in the shade in need of clearing. Poison Ivy mixed with Virginia Creeper I'm sure you know why poison ivy needs removed.  Fortunately I am not allergic to it however that doesn't mean my…

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Corner Shade Garden Then (2008) and Now (2011)

Three years ago I redid a corner spot along our house and turned it into a shade garden. Two plants were present when I started to install the shade garden: a privet (ligustrum) and a cedar tree. I removed the privet mostly because I didn't like it and removed the cedar due to a bagworm infestation I had early last spring. I replaced the privet with an oak leaf hydrangea and plants a 'Constellation' dogwood tree near where the cedar tree was. The dogwood isn't an evergreen tree and isn't as selectable to bagworms. Let's take a look back. In 2008: Here is what the Corner Shade Garden looked like three years ago. The hostas and heucheras were very young, coleus was planted in a few locations (a great annual to add a little color to a shady area), and the oak leaf hydrangea was small, very small.  I tend…

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Corner Shade Garden – April 2011

The Corner Shade Garden - April is when it all gets seriously growing. It's not completely full of hosta foliage since the season has really just begun but as the days pass, the plants will grow, and the garden will fill in very nicely! Looking at the corner shade garden through the arbor you can see a Japanese maple that is completely full of leaves already. Head on is the eyesore of the garden - the heating/AC unit - we have to have it, I just need to find a way to screen it. The rock borders have been collected over the years and added to the corner shade garden and several others. Immediately to the right as you pass beneath the arbor is the Japanese maple again along with a rain barrel I bought last year (Amazon link). It's from Fiskars and has done a really nice job of…

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The Blooming of My Lenten Rose (Hellebore orientalis)

For a couple years now I've watched and waited for our hellebore to bloom. Every year I jealously read the posts of other gardener bloggers who are happily displaying their hellebore blooms but alas, I had no flowers to share! But now the single Lenten rose I have has grown into an 18" little bush with glossy green leaves and has finally flowered. Shade is hard to come by in our yard - at least in the cultivated areas - and so the space where other hellebores could grow has been occupied by other shade loving occupants, namely hostas and heucheras, which left little room for Lenten roses. But perhaps I should make some room? I do have a location that might be perfect for more Lenten roses. There's a little garden in the very back of our yard near the garden shed that could be a new home for…

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Touring a Hosta Garden

One of the great benefits to being a part of a garden club is being able to see other gardens. This past weekend the Spring Hill Garden Club took a tour of a very cool garden based all around everyone's favorite shade plant: Hostas! We visited Cornelia's garden who is the president of the Middle Tennessee Hosta Society. Her garden is amazing. It's full of hostas, hydrangeas, and another unique specimen from Japan: rhodea. Other plants are interspersed for variety but the almost 700 varieties of hosta take center stage in every garden. Some are in pots and others in the ground in smaller garden areas surrounded by walking paths. There is no grass to be found in the main garden and growing grass would be a challenge with the amount of shade Cornelia's garden possesses, but her love of hostas makes it a perfect landscape for the garden. The…

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The Corner Shade Garden

One of my favorite little garden spots is the shade garden. It's nestled into a little corner created by the layout of our house. When I began gardening here I knew I wanted a shade garden somewhere but our options were extremely limited. Most of the yard was full sun back then, but that's changing. It's a slow process, adding trees and waiting for them to grow, so until I could cultivate some really good shade spots the corner shade garden was the best option. It gets morning sun and afternoon shade which is just right for most shade loving plants. Plants in the Corner Shade GardenOak Leaf Hydrangea Hosta 'Ginkgo Craig' Hosta 'Patriot' Hosta 'Unkown' - I have at least 3 varieties of Hosta 'Unkown'! Heuchera 'Silver Scrolls' Heuchera 'Palace Purple' Heuchera 'Midnight Rose' Heuchera 'Fireworks' Heuchera 'Mocha' Heucherella 'Stoplight' Hydrangea 'Lady in Red' Astilbe Japanese Painted Fern The central focal point of this garden is the oak leaf hydrangea.…

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