Low House is in one of those wonderful 50s neighborhoods where everyone has nice roomy lots. It has also had long-term previous owners who loved it and gardened it, so there are all kinds of beds around the house. When Sparks bought it ten years ago, his focus was on restoring the exterior first, so he put in grass seed over the old vegetable garden and left the ornamental plants to their own devices. Thus, I have something pretty near a blank canvas to work with.
Here are the plants I am procuring for the existing flower bed. This bed is sort of damp and gets only partial sun. I have ordered a lot of perennials from Bluestone Perennials, a plant company that I got everything at my previous house from (I got these pictures from them, btw, slightly naughty of me but if they don’t want the free advertising, they’re free to contact me about it and I WILL take the pictures down. I won’t force free advertising to anyone who doesn’t want it!) The plants include achillea, astilbe, globe thistle, shasta daisies, cushion mums, black snakeroot, delphiniums, and purple dome asters. In the fall, I will plant a lot of bulbs there too, certainly white daffodils and tulips and iris… possibly grape hyacinth too, though it is so invasive, I’m a little afraid.
And here are my plants for the containers on the front porch. Morning glories I have grown for two summers now and had great success with. Sweet peas are an item that I have always wanted to have, but somehow, I could never get them going. I will try again, and if they fail, the morning glories will take over.
There is a second flower bed in the center of the patio which I am going to try to fill with lavender. That bed is quite sunny and dry. If the lavender fails utterly, I will fill it in with purple and blue and white seeds until the shasta daisies, globe thistle etc are ready to be divided, then put the divides in it. I would get some purple coneflower in that case, also.
There is a long deck that runs on one side of the house, and I want to till up a narrow perennial border along it. These are the plants I chose for that… all pink and orange, just the kind of cheerful colors I crave in a flower garden. This bed will get full sun, so I have picked out lots of coneflowers, bee balm, and that sort of thing. This bed too will get a lot of bulbs, in the same fiery colors. I certainly want some gladiolus in pinks and oranges for cutting, and some more of the pink daffodils. Tulips are a given.
There are a lot of plants here that I am going to try to grow from seed: foxglove, lupins, snapdragons, and four o’clocks. I got all of the seeds in Burpee seed packets. Again, I got some pictures from their website, and if they don’t want free advertising, I will take the pictures down. I am getting ZERO compensation for advertising these companies, they are just the ones I use and have had good luck with–so I’d like you to know that I’d recommend them to you over a cup of tea.