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Before and After


By lauram


I love a makeover story – garden, human or home – so here’s mine.
I have a small patch next to my driveway which I euphemistically call the “sun garden.” My front yard is mostly shady, but this spot gets more light. It’s been my nemesis for 6 years. It is in shade for much of the day but suffers from the blazing Georgia sun during the hottest hours of the afternoon. To make matters worse, solid rock, in some spots only 5 or 6 inches below the surface, runs through the whole space.
Originally, I’d planted it with Rudbeckia, which did great for a year. But because the plants couldn’t put deep enough roots down, many of them gradually died off. Since then it’s been a challenge finding plants that will work.
I finally gave up this year and decided to plant the shallow areas with annuals, and let the surviving perennials stay.
Here’s how the garden looked on March 28th of this year. Embarrassing. Covered with weeds and dead leaves, and overrun with St John’s wort that never flowered and looked horribly untidy. And a few pathetic needle palms in pots. You can’t see how bad it was from the photo. It depressed me every time I got out of my car and had to walk past it.

And here are some photos of how it looks today. Of course, I have to do some tidying up and the annuals have to grow and fill out, but overall it’s such an improvement! I’ve planted dahlias, zinnias, angelonia and a few others. I also transplanted some cannas from the back where they weren’t getting enough water or attention and moved them to this garden. The taller plants are Rudbeckia, white snakeroot and blue wood aster, and the mass of green in the corner is American argeratum, which is just beginning to bloom and will be covered with lovely lavender flowers soon. There are also Penstemons and 2 Liatris species.

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That's better! :o)

28 May, 2012


That looks a whole lot better,hope it works for you.

28 May, 2012


That makes a huge difference. It's looking wonderful now. Angelonias are perennials here. Are they annuals there?

28 May, 2012


thanks everyone. I think it'll look much better as the season progresses. My next project - which I'm starting today - is beginning the hypertufa pavers, which will cover the space between this spot and the shady garden. Another mess, full of weeds.Can't plant there because the rock is even worse, and shouldn't plant there because it has the access to the crawl space and the plumbing and is the best place to get on the roof.

Angelonias are annuals here, although occasionally a plant sold as an annual will emerge again in spring - just depends on how lucky we are.

28 May, 2012


It looks better. Keep the photos coming as the plants start to flower, it would be great to see how it all develops.

28 May, 2012


Much better now :o) You did a good job there ...

28 May, 2012


thanks all for your comments, anything would be 100% more attractive than what was there. The solid rock runs across the length of the area, down the center.....I really hope the annuals can thrive for a season and give me a little color.

28 May, 2012

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