Suggestions welcome!!

Today I spent time with my friend Kerry discussing how she could improve her front garden. Because there are several large trees on the property, the patch of grass which appears in the middle of the garden, doesn’t get much light and is rather patchy.

Since Kerry lives on a fairly busy street, she does not want to spend a lot of time tending to the front garden. I thought that I would post some pictures here to see if my gardening friends have some ideas for improving the look of the yard and perhaps replacing the lawn.

We live in a Zone 3 so our choice of plants is somewhat limited. I thought that perhaps Kerry could have a path starting at the front steps and winding down the middle of the garden. Flowers could be planted alongside the path.

The long expanses of pea gravel seem to need something.

If you have any suggestions, they would be much appreciated.

9 thoughts on “Suggestions welcome!!

  1. Hi Kate! I’m in London but I wanted to drop by and say ‘hi’! I don’t know all the plant names, but what about some hydrangea (spelling??) — those don’t need a bunch of light as I recall, and have such lovely purple, blue and pink colors. They might do nicely along a path. I was in Kew Gardens (in London) the other day and thought of you — it was so beautiful. King George III lived there, and it is so full of the most incredible plants, trees, flowers, etc. Google it if you haven’t already been there. Ok, someone else needs this computer so I better go. Have a super weekend.:)

  2. Hi Kate, aren’t you a good friend! and what a great new idea for a gardening blog – a bit like the TV show we have here called ‘Backyard Blitz’.

  3. Hi again, KateWhat a lovely idea to ask for suggestions for your friend. Well, I always go on my first instincts and they tell me that if that were my space – I would add some height which would draw the eye to the beautiful trunk of the tree and then on to the door.I would be tempted to add an open obelisk or three (in different sizes) in a scattered group and grow climbers such as clematis up them to keep the airy look but give flower at the same time. I am not familiar with your zone’s plants though – perhaps other climbers would do the same job.Enjoy your weekend 🙂

  4. I’m thinking some really nice ground cover that has little blooming flowers…and I also picture some kind of sculpture out there. And don’t tell your friend this is coming from the woman with the blue thumb! xoxo

  5. Clare – I wondered where you were travelling to! I hope you are having a great time and I’m glad that you had a chance to touch base. I miss your poetry. I so envy you being at Kew Gardens – it is one of my dreams! Pam – I will take pictures of ‘after’ to let you see what Kerry decides to do with her front garden. Bindi – I’d watch a show like that. It would be great fun … especially if someone else did all the work. I think I need another day off!!Shirl – Good idea about adding height to break up the space. Some obelisks with Clematis would look pretty – and we can grow them here…Linda – Putting some groundcover would look great. I’ve shipped off my duelling plants (sedum and creeping jenny to see how fast they can fill up some spaces). I like the sculpture idea too!

  6. I also thought a hydrangea such as “limelight” (which is supposed to be zone 3 hardy) would be nice. Also, some interesting boulders or flagstone path could be installed and add some shrubs/perennials with red or purple contrasting foliage would add interest eg. spirea, red leafed ninebark. Oh yes, and ostrich ferns in the shade!!!

  7. Hi Gardenista,Those are great suggestions … Kerry and I were talking about your blog yesterday. We are both impressed by your garden!!

  8. There, someone already stole my first idea, which was interesting boulders. There are also some quite wonderful evergreens that you could put in for year long structure and color. I’m not sure how hardy they all are, but I’d look into the Pinus and Juniperus genuses. This space is already so close to a Japanese stone garden that I would be tempted to go all the way, complete with a stepping stone path and raked gravel. But not everybody likes that sort of space. But that sort of look can be quite beautiful, and it looks wonderful during all seasons and doesn’t have to be watered. Beautiful stones never die.That being said, in Fairbanks AK there were people who were using delphiniums and geum and shasta daisies as perennials, so I’ll bet those would do okay in your zone.

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