Monday, February 4, 2013

A School Teacher's Pretty Front Garden


Front gardens can be a challenge. How do you keep them lush and colorful, but tidy and presentable at the same time?

Today, I want to share with you a front garden, on a typical suburban lot, that manages to be all those things.


A sweeping path leads from the driveway to the front door of Karen's house.


If we come a bit closer, you can see that Karen has done a wonderful job of mixing shrubs, evergreens (which are going to look great year-round) with perennials such as sedum, lady's mantel, some low-growing ornamental grasses, heuchera, coreopsis and hosta.


Hanging over the pathway leading up to the door there are a climbing hydrangea, pink rose, 
rhododendron and purple clematis.


I took these pictures in mid-June, when there was a mix of soft yellow, pink 
and purple flowers in bloom.



This birdbath-turned-planter was my favourite garden ornament. I love the way that Karen has used a mix of hostas, with some chartreuse-colored creeping jenny that spills beautifully over the edge of the planter. 

Did you notice that she has used a low-growing evergreen at the base of the planter? 

It adds understated textural interest that supports, but doesn't compete with the container planting. 


Pink astilbe with a Rose of Sharon (to the left) and a backdrop of euonymus on the brick wall behind.


Now, let's take a closer look at the plantings leading to the door.


What a glorious soft pink rose!





Up next, we'll head into Karen back garden.


32 comments:

  1. Stunning!!! What a wonderful example of taking risks in the front yard and the amazing pay off...I have been thinking a lot about using more small evergreen shrubs in the front as well as the back. The sweeping garden is soft and the forms are visually appealing to the eye! I'm looking for some smaller grasses (not blue oat grass) but something a bit low and flowy..do you have any recommendations???

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    1. Nicole, Ornamental grasses are a relatively new addition to my garden. I don't have many small scale varieties just a couple. I have a Blue Oat Grass in sun which has a lovely blue-grey color. I also have a several Variegated Sedge, carex morrowii 'Ice Dance' and Varigated Japanese Sedge Carex elata 'Evergold' in half shade and shade.
      I I can get hold of her, I will see if I can get Karen to give you a few recommendations.

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  2. So enjoyed this. She is a wonderful gardener.Especially love her choice of pots, including the bird bath.

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  3. This is a pretty house with a wonderful frontgarden. As far as I can see there is really nothing wrong, a beautiful design with lovely plantings and the right ornaments on the right place.

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  4. So beautiful! I just love that front yard. I wish I had someting like that.

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  5. You know - no garden is perfect….but this comes darn close! Wow!
    School teacher Karen has done an great job of putting terrific plant combinations within an excellent design. The lines of her flower beds curve and move, all the while taking the eye away from the typical vertical elements of a modern suburban house. Her planters are very original and everything looks lush and healthy. I had to smile though - I wonder if her climbing hydrangea on the garage wall tends to creep over her shutters, garage windows and into her eaves? Ours does and needs a sever pruning every few years. Wouldn't give it up though - I love it.

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  6. Thank you for taking us to this lovely garden ~ it's gorgous, so pretty.

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  7. It´s so beautiful, love everything!

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  8. So welcoming! I can imagine that anyone that passes by would want to venture along the pathway to her front door. And then, meet her and glean some gardening wisdom! She has done a beautiful job. I look forward to seeing the rest of her garden.

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  9. Beautiful!!! I love the one shot of the vibrant purple flowers- what are those? Very very pretty (as are all the shots). Can't wait to see the back!

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  10. This is certainly a challenge with the front garden and I am in the middle of this the past few years. How do you make your garden ever-changing without making it wild?

    The one you show has done a great job incorporating many shrubs and perennials without looking messy.

    Eileen

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  11. I have solved the answer to your your first question in my own garden, by just ignoring the tidy and presentable part. Now it is not a problem.

    This is a beautiful garden, thank you for sharing.

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  12. Really lovely. I like the way she uses small shrubs, clematis, and roses.

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  13. A fab-u-lous front garden with near perfect planting - if only I could achieve this effect with mine.

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  14. Nice front garden! I love the tall pot with hostas, good idea.

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  15. What a beautiful front garden with so much interest. I would worry about the climbing hydrangea though, we took ours out when it threatened to lift the roof tiles!!

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  16. I've really enjoyed having a good look around this front garden. It has so many points of interest but manages to seamlessly flow. sigh!!

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  17. OK, I know I shouldn't say this, but I am seriously jealous. Her garden is absolutely stunning!

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  18. Oh my, there are some gardens which take one's breath away. This is one of them.

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  19. LOVE IT!! Feeling inspired! I love how lush and green it is.

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  20. Beautiful especially the roses.

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  21. So beautiful and welcoming! Thanks for sharing. :)

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  22. So rare to see astilbe growing nicely - I've got a few struggling, just never get around to providing the water they need - such a pretty plant - good design and excellent maintenance - she hasn't made it easy for herself with her plant choices, but she's done a brilliant job of making it all look like it all happens on its own. Brava.
    Also, checking to see if you got your invitation to Blooms? See that we missed each other by a couple of days at design show....perhaps we'll finally meet next month?
    Best wishes, Barbara

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  23. Your neighbor has a great eye for combining plants. The front garden is superb.

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  24. I love all of the different colors and textures in the garden -- and that pink rose!!

    Delia's Purple is just a nickname for a passalong, but if you're interested I can dig a sucker. Just email me.

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    1. What a kind and generous offer Sweetbay! I will email my thanks.

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  25. What a lovely idea for a post. I particularly enjoyed the contrasting foliage plants. I can't wait to have a mooch around Karen's back garden!

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  26. I too fell in love with that bird bath. I have been contemplating converting an old sink into a planter in a shady area and I think you just convinced me I need to do that this year. The mini hostas are the perfect size and thanks for pointing out the evergreen. I wouldn't have even noticed but it does complement perfectly.

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  27. What a breathe taking home and garden. Any ladies dream come true! We have down sized our garden and home due to health issues/ maintence. But it is so much fun to dream, and walk through your Garden of Love for flowers. It is so refreshing. Thank you for the garden tours.

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  28. I love the thick lush front yard, can't wait to see the back yard.

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  29. LOL ! I am working backwards here Jennifer ... very pretty front garden too .. but I am wondering how on earth does she keep up with the watering .. under ground sprinklers I bet ? LOL
    Joy : )

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