Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Bringing home the color -- update!

So I've come to the most fun part of the back yard landscaping project, which is picking out the plants to adorn the growing space! For us, this is the perfect time of year to plant, as it's temperate and not hot enough for the plants to get shocky when placed in the ground. And since it's supposed to be 70 degrees this afternoon -- perfect planting weather both for me as well as the plants -- I think a trip to to the nursery is in order.

I already did a diagram of how I want this section of the yard to look, ran the drip lines, etc, and so it's just a question of finding the plants themselves. I've picked drought-tolerant, easy keepers which will be a pleasure to look at but don't need a lot of work, since my work efforts are mainly centered in the vegetable and fruit growing areas of the property. 

The only plant here which requires some vigilance is the Yellow Broom, which tends to get moths laying eggs in it and then hatching, thus destroying parts of the plant. I will have to be sure and put on some bacillus thuringeinsis (BT) spray on a regular basis in the summer months to ensure I get my yellow flowers...but I think yellow flowers are worth it.

I also bought four milkweeds about a month ago, with the idea of using them in this section of the yard -- but after seeing the constant problem they have with aphids (and you can't spray them with anything other than water if the Monarchs are going to use them) I've decided they will go in some side areas where their looks will not be so important. What with old age encroaching, perhaps I should probably find a space like that for myself as well. Just put me on the side where you can't see the imperfections unless you're really close up. Ah, with plants as with life, yes?

And I'm ordering two rose bushes as well -- after the holidays, so I don't have to go down to the post office and wait in a long line of Christmas package senders and pickers-up. I'm going for one "Barbara Streisand" hybrid tea rose, which is a gorgeous lavender (to complement the blue agapanthus and lavender plants, plus the purple crape myrtle tree) plus a "Good as Gold" yellow/gold rose for an accent color. 

Since I was five years old, I've known that there's nothing better than going to the nursery to buy plants. Talk about a gift that keeps on giving, especially appropriate during this time of year.

Update: Here it is all set out in the yard, waiting to be planted...Provence lavender, foreground, couple of yellow brooms, salvia, penstemon, agapanthus and one very nice Italian buckthorn, which was a whim kind of purchase. I think it adds some nice variance in color from the natives.

I feel like I'm in the home stretch, but that's because I'm ignoring the fact that there is 9 yards of bark I have to order and move into place. Denial is SO convenient sometimes!


  1. I love this palette! I tear up at least a few times a week in envy that I can't grow agapanthus here. And you've picked thjngs that fill a space beautifully and spread without being aggressive, at least to the best of my knowledge in my climate. I'll bet it was so hard to wait until the end to buy the plants! Can't wait to see how it all grows together.

    1. Thanks! I'm excited to see it too..already resigned to it having that "new" look (fresh bark but tiny plants) until things grow in, but since I'm planting early I'm hoping to see some growth and flowers by spring. 2017 will be the year it really starts to look good though. Yes, agapanthus are very easy to grow here...the only really aggressive plant we have in our yard is rosemary. It just turns into a massive monster.