January 25, 2010


Click to Enlarge

In my post a few days ago I invited your input. Thanks to those of you who made some good suggestions.

Rock gardens have always been one of my favorites. If done correctly they are natural looking and attractive year round. I am doing my first large scale rock garden which is on a naturally sloping front yard .

Here are my ideas for the landscape plan : The plain concrete landing and walkway can be made more attractive with the addition of tiles and flagstone. No need to remove the existing concrete which can serve as a solid base for the stone. I have extended the walkway across to the driveway for utilitarian purposes . To blend in I will space the flagstone further apart and plant low creeping groundcovers in between.

The weed tree, serviceberry and lawn have been eliminated and the Japanese Maple moved closer to the house. This opens up the view into the garden and makes for an impressive space. The steepest part of the slope has been terraced with thick stones and I am adding boulders and large stones to carry the rock garden theme down to the front fence line.

Since I want a four season garden I am adding evergreen shrubs, ornamental grasses, long-blooming perennials such as daylilies, blackeyed susan, russian sage, ornamental grasses, sedum, campanulas, monarda, asters, low-growing clumping rock garden plants and groundcover. Annuals will be planted in early Summer and bulbs in late Fall. This will be a rather low-maintenance garden once it fills in and no space is left for the weeds.

The narrow bed on the left currently has rose bushes that look as if they are on their last lap. I plan to dig those out and plant a hedge of Knockout Roses that will bloom from June until November here in Zone 6A.

At the upper right corner of the plan is a tall decorative white trellis planted with a colorful vine such as a climbing rose or Trumpet . The trellis will run from the house to across the driveway. and hide the long view to the backyard.

The narrow bed on the left is filled with roses that are on their last lap. I plan to remove them and plant the long blooming, disease resistant carefree Knockout rose shrubs . Here in Zone 6 they bloom from June to November and are a magnificent sight to behold.

Since my client travels a great deal I will propose to him that an irrigation system will protect his investment and saves his valuable time. While he is not an experienced gardener , he does love and appreciate a good one.

There is still much work to be done, such as preparing a plant list and breaking down the cost of materials/labor so that I can have a comprehensive plan to present to my client.

So there you have it. Every designer has their own unique approach and I've given you an example of mine. My plan is never written in concrete as I tell the client and I reserve the option of changing it when I deem it necessary. Thus far, no complaints.

Written by Carolyngail at Sweet Home and Garden Chicago
All rights reserved


  1. I really love what you've done, beautifully designed. For the trellis vine, I like combining two different plants to play off of each other. Flowering runner beans (they even look interesting if no one is harvesting them) and a perennial with large, dark leaves. Your client is lucky to get such a beautiful garden!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...