Mini forsythias for small gardens & containers
Fri, Mar 14 2014 09:07 | Cutting Gardens, Featured Plant, Perennial Gardens, Pots Containers, Small Front Yards, Trends Ideas
|Forsythia 'Show Off Starlet'|
Add early spring color in as little as 16" - 36" of spaceEveryone seems to enjoy the bright yellow flowers that forsythia bring to the early spring landscape but not everyone has the space for the full sized shrub that can easily reach 8' tall. Now there are miniature and dwarf varieties available! These jewels ranging from 16" - 36" as lovely in containers, mixed in perennial borders or added as accents among broadleaf evergreens and conifers.
|Forsythia 'Dwarf Mini Gold'|
The dwarf variety from Proven Winner is Show Off Starlet at 24" - 36". Others in this size range include Arnold's Dwarf, Goldilocks, Gold Tide, Happy Centennial and Golden Peep.
|Forsythia 'Show Off Starlet'|
Forsythias are tough plants that can be used in any sunny to part sun area of the landscape. They are very forgiving of soil types, help to prevent erosion on hillsides and are even deer resistant!
Looking forward to using these in my designs! Are you ready to add this lovely yellow shrub to your landscape? Then contact me to schedule your Initial Consultation or Garden Walk now!
Danna Cain, ASLA
Rolling Planters move with the sun
Rolling planters present an opportunity to grow flowers and edibles in places never before possible.What if the sunniest place in your yard happens to be in the middle of the patio where your tables and chairs are? Since you rarely sit there every day and certainly not all day long, consider this ... push the furniture aside and roll your planters to that location so your plants can benefit from the rays of the sun!
I discovered these planters while searching for a solution for a family living in a mid century Modern home. The industrial look of these planters fits their style perfectly. The general concept is workable, however, for any style. Choice of materials, trim and color can easily modify the idea to work with a Traditional or even a Zen garden.
The key is heavy duty wheels that swivel so the planter can be moved easily in a small space. A light weight soil mix would be a benefit too, such as the soil used for roof top gardens, green roofs or hanging baskets.
I can't wait to find more uses for these planters along a driveway, near a pool, or even to transform the parking lot of a church or school. There are so many paved areas that are very sunny and unoccupied during the week or during the summer. Let's make that space productive and beautiful with edibles, flowers, and even fragrant small shrubs.
Get details about the planters shown in the photo above at rollingplanter.com and minifarmbox.com. Both are shipping from the West coast. I will be looking for other planters from suppliers located closer to each job site. Let me know if you discover anything.
Read more about us and my ecological, sustainable landscapes.
Danna Cain, ASLA
Home & Garden Design, Inc., Atlanta
Transform your holly bushes
Sun, Sep 1 2013 08:11 | Curb Appeal, Herb Gardens, Italian Garden, Organic Edible Gardens, Perennial Gardens, Pots Containers, Pruning, Small Front Yards
|These holly trees have been "limbed up" into tree form|
plus new, more interesting plants added around
for color, texture and an Italian flair
Morphing a holly hedge into an award winning statementHere's an idea you can use! When faced with a huge, boring hedge, consider "limbing it up" to morph it into a row of trees. That was our solution when the City of Atlanta arborist would not allow us to remove these Virginia Highland hollies. The raised canopy gave us space and sun to plant the herb and perennial garden that the client desired. This idea won the 2013 Atlanta Home Improvement, Best Before/After Makeover contest in the landscape division.
The hedge was so fat and robust that it was difficult for the owner to keep up with pruning it off of the unique, yet small driveway. The first goal was to give the client more space.
The photo below was taken immediately after pruning the hollies. Yes, that entire hedge was from only 2 plants! Notice how we selected only a few of the best main trunks on each plant. We then shaped and cleaned out the canopy. Strategic limbs were cut back severely so that they would “bush up” to fill in and grow into a more compact form. Drastic reclamation pruning, such as this, should be done in February while the plant is dormant. This timing, just before the flush of new Spring growth, assures that the plant will not be barren for long.
The next photo shows the holly trees "limbed up" into tree form plus the new, more interesting plantings surrounding the hollies. This client wanted color, texture, herbs and an Italian flair. Notice how we incorporated the Italian cypress that he really wanted for texture. He did not mind seeing the neighbor's house. In fact, he welcomed the more spacious view that this idea presented.
Between the hollies, we placed a large Italian Terra Cotta urn as a focal point. This provides color rear round, especially in the winter when the surrounding perennials are dormant.
The sunniest place in the yard was at the corner, so this is where we placed the main herb garden. See how the pruning of the hollies, addition of the Italian cypress and the herbs plus perennials have transformed the curb appeal of this Midtown home.
|After photo shows how this idea provides better|
curb appeal plus space for the herb garden
at the sunny curb
Read more about this project:
Portfolio photo #1 curb appeal
Portfolio photo #2 perennial gardens