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My New Playspace

My New Playspace

  • Ever since we moved in, I have wanted to change our landscaping. There wasn’t necessarily anything wrong with what was growing but it just wasn’t me. I have shared some of the changes that I have made in previous posts but the most exciting change happened this week. This week I freed our home from its viburnum davidii prison! I actually like the look of viburnum davidii but we had too much! When we moved in, it bordered our entire house.


    Here is the before picture of what our house looked like from the street. The viburnum completely hid our porch and walkway and you couldn’t see any of the side garden border. Not to mention, it was dying in places after a hot summer.


    Here is the before view from our dining room window. It wasn’t terrible but not particularly interesting. Viburnums flower in the late winter, early spring. Other than that, it’s just a lot of green leaves. The azaleas had grown into the viburnum and it all looked a little messy. There was also a mess of ivy and holly volunteers growing underneath.

    So after months of debating, I decided to have it ripped out. We hired some guys to remove all the shrubs and the roots. They cleared out all the ivy and left me with a beautiful canvas to start new.


    I kept the viburnum growing in front of the porch because I think it looks nice. It acts as a perfect backdrop to my garden and it shines in its own right. There is something to that saying, “too much of a good thing.” But now that there is just the one section of viburnum, it looks great. Also, check out that lovely birdbath on top of an old tree stump. Isn’t that so cool? It has always been there and you could see it from the window and the pathway but you could not see it from the street. Neighbors have been asking me if I put it there and I said, “Nope, it’s always been there! You just couldn’t see it!” It is such a fun focal point in the garden and will be great to watch the birds from the dining room. I sometimes wondered if the birds even noticed the bath buried in all those shrubs!


    So then the really fun part happened- buying plants! On Tuesday, I went to one of my favorite nurseries, Watson’s Greenhouses in Puyallup. As luck would have it, everything is 40% off right now. Fall is a fantastic time to redo a garden because not only is everything on sale, but it is an ideal time to plant! The garden space turned out to be much larger than I anticipated so I had to make a couple of trips to buy plants. (Oh, darn!)  I didn’t know exactly what I wanted but knew I would continue with my herb border of Spanish lavender and rosemary plants. I wanted a few winter interest plants so I chose a few red twig dogwoods and a profusion beauty berry bush. The beauty berry, or callicarpa b profusion, bush grows clusters of iridescent lilac purple berries in the winter and it is supposed to be amazing! I will share a photo when the time comes. The dogwoods have white flowers in the spring, medium green foliage, and in the winter the stems stand out in a vivid red. The variety of dogwood is called Baton Rouge, or cornus alba ‘Minbat’. One of my favorites in the garden are hydrangeas so I decided to go with a couple of varieties.  The first variety I chose is called Vanilla Strawberry, or hydrangea paniculata “renhy’. It gets about 6ft tall at maturity and has blooms of white and pink on red stems. I also chose a shorter hydrangea to grow around the bird bath. It’s called Next Generation Pistachio Hydrangea, or hydrangea macrophylla ‘horwack’. Its blooms have a mixture of pink and pistachio green. Now that I have a little structure to the garden, I will wait until spring to fill in with perennials and other fun stuff. I am thrilled to have a big garden space with lots of sunshine. The only challenge I am facing is that the neighborhood deer seem to love the new space as well. They especially love my tender new hydrangeas. After they had one meal, I covered the hydrangeas with bird netting and I will let you know if it is a successful deterrent. Anyhow, here are a couple after photos. I am so pleased with the change and I think it makes our house looks so much more inviting and warm.


    From the dining room window.


    And just for emphasis- before & after once more:



    September 25th, 2014 | girl has thyme | No Comments |

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