I have been working on this side of the house for two years now. I think I'm done. Done-ish.
This area is what you see when you drive up to our house. It used to be ugly and I needed it to be pretty. First thing I did was to makeover the garage by building a Garage Trellis for above the Garage door. Then I freshened it up with paint. To see the before click here.
Next I asked for rocks for my birthday so that I could build a rockery in this area. We bought a dump truck load and dumped them right in front of the garage. I did all that you see in the above photo by using a hand truck to wheel the rocks over and dump them in place. The bigger rocks on the other side hubby set with a machine years ago.
The funny thing about building a rockery is that it looks terrible as you are doing it. You have to step away and come back to it before it looks good. You are probably wondering where my husband was during all this, well I'm impatient and he was working so I did it. Really I just like doing this stuff myself until I don't anymore than he swoops in and helps ;)
I planted a Japanese Maple in the center of the rockery and covered the base with some ground covers. To the left are "Pinks". I love the way they smell. They are very hardy and transplant easily. We have a lot of green in our landscape so I like the bluish foliage. Most of the plants I used are volunteers from the plants we have in the front flower beds. I set a few large rocks in the bed for interest.
This area under the tree looks like a little fairy garden to me and I want to make a little fairy house for it eventually, something you have to really be looking to see. There is some bluegrass in that bed also.
I planted the steps with a type of sedum. You can find it in the ground cover section at your garden center. I love it because it spreads like crazy but doesn't bother the plants around it. It gets little white flowers in early summer and turns various shades of red. I have it everywhere.
The white flowers are Cerastium tomentosum (Snow-in-Summer) I repeated it around both rockeries every five feet or so. I love it for it's silvery foliage. It stays silvery all winter. This section was planted first and just went crazy last year.
Purple fountain grass, cat mint, bluegrass and an old rusty lantern with a $2 solar light. The purple flower is an annual.
My husband found me these round rocks from a job site aren't they cool? They came from a rock pit after it was blasted.
No rockery is complete without Hen & Chicks. More "pinks" see how the blue foliage pops off all the green.
This rockery surrounds a concrete patio. I use the patio all the time when I want to work on projects outside or to soak up some afternoon sun. The other side of the house is shaded in the afternoon.
The tree is a native Vine Maple free from the forest. My little squirrel nemesis likes the bird feeder.
The tree gives enough shade for a Hosta. The tree in the pot is a native Birch my friend gave me. It will need to be planted somewhere soon, they grow fast.
My Uncle recently gave me this antler he found. Critters had nibbled off the end points. It is so weathered it looks like driftwood. More snow in summer, a sedum and a variegated grass.
The ivy was been here a long time. Recently I read in a comment somewhere that anyone who plants Ivy should be shot. It made me laugh because I can totally relate. It is an invasive beast. I decided to work with it. The patio was built with concrete blocks surrounding it and the Ivy disguises it nicely. I just have to hack it back a couple times a year to keep it from taking over the world. I am grooming it to fill in the bare spots.
I bought one rose this year. I feel like I have no business buying roses because I have killed a few over the years but it was so pretty I had to try again. The bird house is just decorative the holes are covered. To much direct sun for birds to nest there. The trellis is something I just recently built. I designed it to coordinate with the garage trellis. I planted a clematis on it. ( To see my post on Building a DIY Trellis click here. )
Oh and that huge window. It was here form the previous owner. Score! It has been hidden for years by the dog house we tore out. Behind it is a breezeway to the carport from the detached garage. I hide lots of lumber behind that wall.
Here's another section of concrete block I am training my Ivy to cover. The Ivy is growing out of a hole in the concrete behind the planter. The Ivy is also climbing the wall to the Garage and I know I probably shouldn't let it but it looks so cool. I keep telling myself I won't let it go any farther.
Well there you have it. I feel like I have the hardscaping complete in this area now so I plan to be a little more daring with flower choices as I go along. I would love to have a cottage garden look around the patio with lots of flowers. I am also on the hunt for some Hollyhock to plant either in front of the window or against the Garage thanks to some facebook friends suggestions. As you can imagine the rest of the yard looks terrible because all I have been focusing on is this. So I will be working on that next. The hedge is taller than me, no joke.
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