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I have just managed to get out and finish planting my front garden after having a new driveway. I've gone for evergreens for year round interest and to keep maintenance relatively low: skimmia, choisya, daphne, pittisporum, physocarpus, phormium, daylily and black and gold grass (forgot the names). What plants do you have out front and for year round interest?
I have a box hedge round a rose and perennial bed which includes some heuchera and geranimum macrorhizum which keep their foliage. In another bed I have a picea abies Rydal whose new growth is a deep red in spring so I grow it with a couple of red stemmed cornus. Another bed has a large cornus Midwinter Fire for stem colour and green and purple leaved forms of bergenia backed by a conifer hedge. Everything else is deciduous or herbaceus.
I find some evergreen is good for structure and interest but bare stems of trees and shrubs with some grasses and perennial seed heads add their own beauty in winter.
Hi Mrs G,
My front garden is in need of a facelift but due to the work completed in the back garden since we got here I haven't had time to do much yet. I have a massive Ceanothus tree which was here when we moved in and I have kept it as it flowers twice a year and is absolutely covered in bees when in full flower in Spring. I have actually had people stop me in the street and comment on being able to hear the bees from several houses away!
To keep the wildlife theme going a have planted out a selection of perennials such as Rebeckia, Aster, Foxgloves, Lysmachia, Japenese Anemones, Crocossmia to name a few. These All provide interest from Spring through to Autumn but then die back in winter. As with my large pollinating beds in the back garden I leave the seed heads onthrough the winter months and they get readily feasted on by Goldfinch and Greenfinch.
In early Spring I will cut them down and the whole process starts again!
I reckon fairly low maintenance and super ranges of colour through the summer months!?
Like many people we have two cars to park off road so some space goes but I have used gravel to aid drainage. Within this gravel area I get a lot of self seeded Purple Toadflax, which again I just let do it's thing (feed the bees!)
It will be interesting to see what others do in their front gardens...
My front garden has a mix of decidous and evergreen grasses, cytisus (broom) in pink shades, lavender, helianthemum (rock rose), armeria (sea thrift), dianthus (rockery types), bearded iris. I put in some spring flowering bulbs last autumn, I hope they come up ok. They are are mix of tete a tete daffodils, iris reticulata, snow drops (from my dad's garden) and crocus. This is all planted into a weed suspressing membrane covered in gravel. It has been planted for about 6 years now, I've had a few casualties (rosemary and french lavender) and made a few changes.
Those Spring flowering bulbs will look lovely when they come up and you've chosen well I think, I hope they do come up for you, I'm sure they will.
Thanks for these ideas. My back garden is very waterlogged right now and looks miserable but I do have a row of red stemmed dogwoods that I propagated from hardwood cuttings, a sedum and a hydrangea. The rest is very much a work in progress Winter interest wise but we have been here less than a year. I have put some crocus bulbs in the lawn and planted a great swathe of allium bulbs but with all the waterlogging I don't think my alliums will survive : (
Not usually into coniferous plants obelixx but that looks like an interesting one. I am going for muted white and green tones in the back garden with some splashes of purple so I am thinking more about different textures than a range of colours. That is why the front garden is such a mish mash, I've got very yellow foilage along with bluish and almost black because it's an overflow for all the other lovely shrubs I see! Think it is almost at capacity now though.
Sarcocca confusa, wonderful perfume Jan/Feb especially in sheltered spot.