Sunday, September 28, 2014

How does our garden grow?

It grows weedy and overgrown, for the most part. But it's our yard, and I know you all want to see it.

Finally, I've got the yard pictures done. I'm not sure that they're in completely the right order but they're all annotated, I think. So here you go - there's a lot of them so they're after the jump.

Our house! We don't have much of a front yard but the back yard is quite huge. 

The front flower bed. From front to back, the pink flowers are verbana, petunia, begonia, and 'new guinea' impatiens. There are also a few light-green hosta plants (the flower spikes you see are a second flowering; they appeared after I cut off the old flower stalks) and a row of dark green hostas in the back. The other green plants are some kind of weird evergreens. Ian's mom gave us the brugmansia in the pot on the steps. Please don't look at the dead impatiens in the pot on the porch. I'm not good at watering.

Closeup of new guinea impatiens. This variety is pretty and quite hardy; we've already had a frost and they're still alive even though we didn't cover the,=m.

Closeup of the verbana. Pretty.

Closeup of petunia in front.

Closeup of begonia.

The source of the problems with the neighbour. As you can see, the lower part of the driveway abuts his driveway up until the point where a sidewalk would be located (if we had sidewalks). You can't see it, but there's not a lot of room between his house and the property line and that combined with the fact that the weedy gravel patch is hard to distinguish from his driveway means that his employees end up driving on our property.
At the bottom of the picture, to the left of where the driveways meet, you can see where the curb was cut; we're quite certain that this was the original driveway line. So we're having the driveway cut from the corner of the garage to that cut line and the area between there and the neighbour's house will be filled in with turfstone (we'll grow thyme in there). We're also going to put up a curb just inside our property line.
BTW, the driveway at the bottom is all cracked because a) the previous owner parked his car there to make it more difficult for the neighbour to drive in, and b) the neighbour drives over that area with his heavy truck and trailers.

The side of the house with the path that we're going to have fixed. I'm not sure you can tell from this pic just how wavy that left border is, but it's wavy. To the left of the path is ground that's level and that should dip down for drainage. We're having that area regraded, edging put on both sides of the path, and extending the flower beds by the house to the path.

The path at the front of the house, looking at the other neighbour. If you look closely above the garage entry at the side, you can see where part of the garage shifted.
This is also a good shot of my grubby lawn. And I mean "grubby" in the "full of grubs" sense; we have both cranefly and june bug grubs munching the grass. 

Possibly the most pathetic weeping pussywillow tree ever. The weeping pussywillow bush is grafted onto the trunk of some other related tree at that bulging spot at the top. Prior to this winter, there were branches growing out of all parts of the graft bulge but in the spring the branches all just died. All that's left alive is this one part of the tree.

Cypress vine/cardinal flower growing up and over the house. Ian's mom gave us this plant originally and the plants that are growing are from last year's seeds that just sprouted. 

Closeup of the cypress vine/red cardinal flower.

The cypruss vine/cardinal flower can't go up so it's going back down.

A coral bell (heuchera) that is doing very, very well. When we moved in, this plant wasn't even in the ground and it was dying. 

Hosta plants.

Two of my three rosebushes. The one on the right had grown very tall but it died back completely this winter. There's another rosebush just to the left of the frame against the wire fence. Below the rosebushes are boxwoods.

Looking back on the side path. Against the fence is a rather pathetic clematis.

Looking to the right

Turn around and look up the hill

The world's most pathetic ginkgo tree. When we moved in, the central leader broke off. The daylily at its feet is overgrown and needs to be divided. That patch of grass behind the ginkgo is one of Gozer's evening pee spots (in fact, it's the only one she gets in the winter)


Looking at the obelisk, bird feeders, and stairs. The obelisk has some cypress vine/cardinal flower on it that Ian's mom gave us. This area gets too much sun for it to be very happy, though. Behind the obelisk are some more coral bells and black-eyed susans. On the other side of the stairs, you can see irises below those feeders, a black lace elder to the right of them, and coneflowers. At the top of the hill you can see hydrangeas and a japanese maple to their right.

Black-eyed susans. Pretty but they grow like weeds - both from seed and from runners - and they take over.

A fuschia (gartenmeister) that Ian's mom gave us. And she told me what it was.

A begonia. Ian's mom gave us this, too, and told me what it was.

We have no idea what this tree is. There are daylilies and hostas behind it as well as a phlox behind at to the left. Behind the phlox are giant silver grass.

Phlox flowers.

Looking to the right along the house; another peastone path with pavestone.

The bird feeders and the stairs.

Standing in front of the coneflowers looking at the stairs. The chain link fence borders our neighbour and the wooden fence borders the park.

Coneflowers. Pretty. Goldfinches love the seeds.

Another coneflower picture. I really do like these flowers.

Who knew there were plants behind the coneflowers and black lace elder? Easily seen from right to left towards the bottom are zinnias begonias, spreading phlox, and more coneflowers. Nestled in the rocks are siberian cypress; above that are some spreading phlox, deutzia, and rozanne cranesbills.

Zinnia flower that Ian's mom gave me. Hummingbirds like them, too.

Another zinnia flower that Ian's mom gave me. I didn't know that they needed to be staked up so this one is near to the ground, which is why it's dirty, but it's still pretty.

Begonias in the back yard.

A rather pathetic pansy. This one's in the back yard and I guess the clay soil didn't help it grow. 

I love this picture of the cranesbill because it really shows the curved stamens.
There are lavenders  there, too. Just the three of them at the bottom. Behind them are the zinnias that I didn't know needed to be staked. Between them and the black lace elder is used to be coral bells and I know I put petunias there but nothing grows in that area, likely due to clay soil.
In the distance you can see the bridge over the waterfall and the greenhouse.

Standing at the path between the stairs and the bridge looking down towards the house. Over behind the house you can see the raised, one-story deck our neighbour built. I'm sure he'll put up a railing someday. 

At the top of the stairs by the hydrangeas, looking down towards the patio.

A sad Jack Frost Brunnera

Turning around, we see our three ash trees. The emerald ash borer is here and so those trees will need to come down but we're leaving them up for now. In front of the ash trees is a small maple, and to the right of the ash trees is our tulip tree. The bushes below the ash trees are spirea, I think.

Tulip tree leaves. They're called tulip trees because the flowers look like tulips. Not that we've seen any on our tree; it keeps breaking off limbs and the ash trees are stunting its growth. The leaves are very distinctive, as you can see. The leaves on out tree are very big - about 4-6" wide - whereas the other tree we've seen has much smaller leaves.

Backlit tulip tree leaves.

The cherry tree, the greenhouse, and our vegetable garden. I did take pics of the pear tree, the other pear tree, the apple tree, and the plum tree but there was dust on the lens so they didn't work out.

Moving over a bit and looking back down towards the patio. On the lower left of the picture is a tiger-eyes staghorn sumac. 

Looking straight down towards the house. In the flower bed from left to right is a sedum, grass, mystery bushes (with the reddish leaves), jack frost brunnera, recently cut-down lupin (due to aphids), sedum, magnolia, and mystery tree. In front of the magnolia are the crocosmia lucifer, solomon's seal, and some grass. There's a weeping mulberry tree behind the sedum on the left with a tiger lily in front of it but those are hard to see.

A closeup of the crocosmia lucifer seed pods. The flowers are beautiful when they're out but the seed pods are nice too.

Looking across to the other side of the property. The hill seems much steeper than it looks here.

Our vegetable garden. In front are peppers; to the left of them are dead pees. Behind them are grape vines.

The greenhouse came with the house. There are pepper plants in there. I think a chipmunk has dug a burrow underneath it, which is why Gozer is sniffing there.

In front of the greenhouse we have another hosta and some rhubarb that I just cut down. On the other side of the rhubarb used to be raspberry canes but they didn't get enough light because of the greenhouse and the canes got long and in the way.

Behind the dead peas are carrots (in front) and green beans. Behind the beans is our overgrown strawberry patch.

Grapes. We have a hard time knowing when they're ripe; what ends up happening is that one day they're not ripe and the next day they're gone. The birds eat them just when they get ripe.  

A closer view of the strawberry patch and the yard towards the side of the house. 

On the other side of the greenhouse and grapes is a whole other part of the yard. On the left is a recently-pruned weeping crabapple tree; in the lower right are the two hassock berry plants (apparently both are needed) and in the back are three autumn blaze maples that we planted before we knew Gozer was allergic to maples.
Between the maples and the hassocks are the steppable plants that I planted. The darker green blotches are thyme and the lighter are a kind of moss. Believe it or not, there are 48 plants in the area! (some aren't visible)

The weeping crab that I just pruned (which is why it looks weird) with a hosta to the left. Under the blue tarp is soil. 

Just on the other side of the weeping crab looking along the back fence. There's giant silver grass along the fence there and something or other in front.

Our raspberry bushes. They're planted in a line with the grape plant furthest away from the greenhouse. They love this location.

Looking down the hill on this side of the property.

A birch tree. When we moved in, there were birch trees scattered through this side of the property and they were all dying and infested with birch miner. They were all cut down and the stumps we didn't remove have grown new birch trees. They're not perfect for the area because they're European birches but they'll be fine for 15 years or so.

From the grape tree looking back towards the patio. We're thinking that we're going to want to terrace this side of the hill, too, because it's a pain to mow. Also, with the magnolia getting bigger, I need to move some things around and I'd like to plant them on that full sun side (the other side is mostly sunny but is shaded by the ash trees in the morning).

Looking back up the hill at the steppables I planted there (the twelve green plants). In front of those is clover gone wild.

Looking down towards the side of the house. The tree in the middle is a rose of sharon; to it's lower left is another sedum.

Looking along the lower bed. From left to right, in front are hosta, tigerlily, weeping mulberry, hosta, peony.

Looking back up the hill. The weeds are a bit hard to see because the grass was just cut but they're there. The grub damage is also visible - which is another reason to get rid of the grass entirely and plant flowers and pretty things.

Looking back towards the house, beside the rose of sharon. Along the back of the house, from left to right, are a grass, black-eyed susan, miniature lilac, yucca, grass, boxwood, another weeping crab, and more yucca. You can't see the other miniature lilac on the other wide of that yucca but you can just see the "sasquatch tree" - it's some kind of weird pine.

The rose of sharon. Behind it are some evergreens and behind that is a hosta garden.

Looking at the fence and shed from the path behind the house. In the background is a river birch, which we planted because the deck our neighbour built looks directly into the master bathroom.

The path looking towards the patio.

A better view of the weeping mulberry. You can see the fruit trees in the background.

Another returning birch tree by the fence near the hosta garden behind the rose of sharon.

The hosta garden behind the rose of sharon (view looks towards the back of the property).

The side of the house, looking back towards the greenhouse. Gozer doesn't like it when I leave her in the yard. On each side of the fence, we've planted some delicate vines from Ian's mom but they're not doing well this year.

Looking towards the front yard. This window well, along with three others, is made of wood and is rotting. We're having them replaced with stone.

Looking towards the neighbour's house. There are two ash trees here - one to the left and other, shorter one to the right. They were both fairly tall when we moved in but they were very spindly so we had them cut down. Well, they're coming back.

Looking back towards the fence.

Looking towards the street. You can see fairly clearly the space between the corner of the neighbour's house and the edge of his driveway. 

The surprise hosta garden beside the shed :) When we last divided our hostas, we had too many so we just threw these back here. They're not even planted and they're doing ok.

A small climbing plant (Ian's mom thinks this is an asarina maybe?) from Ian's mom. It didn't grow very well.

Looking from the double gate towards the patio

On the path, looking at the house. On the left is a miniature lilac, overgrown grass, overgrown black-eyed susans, and overgrown yuccas. The bare patch in the center front used to be a boxwood but it had little white bugs that was killing it so I took it out.

Same spot but looking more to the right. You can see the boxwood in front, a partly overgrown weeping crabapple tree, and more overgrown yucca behind it. And more overgrown grass.

The sasquatch tree. We have no idea what this tree is actually called: it's sort of like a jack pine but growing slightly differently and it has extremely sticky sap.

A miniature lilac with yucca in front and boxwood behind.

The magnolia. Surrounding it are plants whose names I don't know. One of them - the one that has a clump and then a couple of individual spikes - is a gayfeather (aka liatris or blazing star), I think.

Four lupine plants. I had to cut them down because they ended up overrun with aphids. At that point, the plants will die anyways so it's best to cut them down. They grow back quickly.

Solomon's seal that Ian's mom gave us. On the top right you can see the seed pods and stalks of the crocosmia lucifer and, below that, some Autumn Joy sedum. To the left is more Autumn Joy sedum and two little plants that grew as seeds from a bigger clump on the other side of the magnolia. The magnolia is the tree in the picture that's growing over everything.

Looking at the magnolia (on the left) towards the patio with the waterfall on the left. From left to right in the foreground is the Autumn Joy sedum, the crocosmia lucifer (that's the spiky leaves that look sort of like irises) and some daylilies. In the midground, beside the magnolia, is a mystery tree.

A closer look at the plants in front of the magnolia.

In the same position as the last two pictures, but turned towards the bridge and the waterfall.

On the bridge, looking up. To the right is the tiger sumac; to the left is the japanese maple and below that, the rozanne cranesbill. In the (dry) waterfall are water lilies, which are still alive even though they're not getting water.

Looking down the waterfall from the bridge. There's water there but you can't see it for the overgrown milkweed.

Looking toward the bird feeders from the bridge.

Looking towards the upper path from the bridge.

A closeup of the upper part of the waterfall. At the back on the right are salvia from Ian's mom and beside them on the left are lupines (which are growing back after being cut down due to being overrun by aphids).
The black things you see there are filters that normally sit inside the basin. However, there's a leak in the waterfall somewhere so the water is currently redirected lower down. The filters had been sitting to the side of the waterfall but then we found two chipmunks had drowned in the partly-filled upper basin :( :( :( :( :(

A closeup of the lupine leaves. Pretty.

Salvia flowers. Most are gone but hummingbirds love them.

Looking down the hill from the path beside the bridge.

On the upper path looking back towards the waterfall and its milkweed.

Looking back to the bridge. As you can see, the rozanne cranesbill is way way overgrown. 

A pile of rocks. Also some hen and chicks (and a dandelion).

One of our hen and chicks has a flower!

Another hen and chick about to be overrun by the cranesbill.

And the other hen and chick, also being overrun by a cranesbill.
The rozanne cranesbill grows a lot. Here, it's covered the (also) overgrown weeping crab.

Milkweed going to seed.

Cranesbill flowers. It's a good thing they're pretty because there are a LOT of them. They also bring a lot of bees to visit, you can see on the right there.

Hydrangea flowers.

Another rose of sharon bush in front of some giant silver grass. This bush started out as a twig given to us by Ian's mom. There are two others - one to the right of this one and one amongst the black-eyed susans on the hill. They're not as big as this one but they're all alive.

Looking down towards the patio from the top of the hill near the ash trees. There are many hostas and many daylilies there but you can't see them from the stairs behind the black-eyed susan hedge.

Perhaps the world's most pathetic rhododendron. The previous owners had put textile underneath the soil to prevent weeds and the rhododendron's roots got stunted by that. Then one of the chipmunks dug a hole by those roots.

At the top of the hlll, looking down the stairs towards the patio.

Looking towards the waterfall.

Looking down towards the patio on the other side of the path.

From the stairs looking along the path to the bridge.

I don't remember what this is called but it lives in the waterfall.

A bittercress plant. My lawn is overrun with them.

See? Overrun by bittercress.

Slightly blurry pic of a hummingbird on one of the bird feeder finials. This hummingbird considers our yard to be hers and chases away many birds that are bigger than her.


Glenna and George said...

Wow, your garden looks great! We are very impressed.

Robin said...

Wow!! What a fantastic garden :)

manchester fat acceptance said...

omg i cannot believe how beautiful your garden is!!! and so many nooks and crannies and lovely spots to be in. what a lot of work though :P