We will pick up our tour of Liz Maliki's wonderful garden on the curving path
leading into the back garden.
The plantings along the pathway include (starting along the top row on the left) a spirea, a Pieris Japonica, and a Japanese Maple. In the lower row there is also a hosta with spear-shaped foliage and two white Foam Flowers, Tiarella cordifolia.
Foam Flower, Tiarella cordifolia
Along the length of the back fence are a series of hanging baskets filled with colorful annuals.
Looking back down the pathway.
A closeup of the Golden Japanese Forest Grass, Hakonechloa macra and Jacob's Ladder, Polemonium caeruleum which you can see in the lower left corner of the last shot.
Another close-up of Jacob's Ladder, Polemonium caeruleum
The flowerbeds continue on from the back of the garden shed and run the length of the property.
I want to pause in our tour to show you something which I think was an act of brilliance on Liz's part. I wish I had thought of this for my own garden!
Running wide flowerbeds parallel to the backyard fence is a very typical thing for many homeowners to do. The problem with this kind of layout is that weeding beds which are several feet deep can be tricky once the garden fills in by mid-summer. The plants block easy access from the front and the fence blocks access from the back.
What Liz did was to run a walkway behind the flowerbeds, right next to the fence using some recycled concrete pavers. When the garden leafs out, you barely see the hidden walkway and yet it gives her an easy way to weed the back of the garden. When we spoke on the phone, Liz also pointed out that this design trick also improves air circulation and helps with problems like powdery mildew.
One of the many things that impressed me about Liz's garden was her talent for growing rhododendrons; a shrub I have had little success with. I have always thought of rhododendrons as fussy shrubs that did not like the dry summers and the harsh Ontario winters.
When we chatted, Liz advised me that understanding the root systems would make me more successful with growing rhododendrons. These shrubs are surface feeders and they can be damaged by planting them to deeply.
Plant the top of the root ball at the surface of the soil and then mulch. Rhododendrons like light, sandy acidic soils which is high in organic matter.
We will end our tour in this pretty little corner of the garden.
As I wrote in my last post, Liz Maliki's garden was one of the terrific stops featured on last year's Annual Canadian Cancer Society's Garden Tour in Mississauaga, Ontario.
This year's tour will again offer a unique opportunity to visit gardens in the Lorne Park neighbourhood of Mississauga and enjoy live instrumental music in select locations. Featured guest, Paul Zammit, director of horticulture at the Toronto Botanical Garden, will offer tips and garden advice.
For tour details and ticket information: