It's depressing, sometimes, starting a bed all over again. Early last summer, this round bed, approximately ten feet in diameter, was filled with with flowers, butterflies, hummingbirds. As summer faded into fall, I finally had to admit that the plants, the three duranta, the esperanza, even the basil, looked more scary than pretty.
The past few weeks, I've spent a lot of time at our local nursery. At first, there was only a small selection. It was still too cold, the chance of a hard freeze persisted. This past weekend, they set out a lot more; I had plenty to choose from. But I was scared. I don't want to keep starting my beds over again. I want to enjoy the satisfaction of a mature garden. Of course, I will always be on the lookout for new and wondrous additions, but to have the bones set for a good, long while would be nice.
I've been noticing that the most beautifully enduring plants are my roses. They are beginning to show off for spring. I decided that I will add a few roses to the round bed and plant around those. We had one already, a Clotilde Soupert, and now I set the Papa Meilland in another section. I think I will add two more before it's all over. In the meantime, I've been adding plants that shouldn't grow too large. The bed is divided into five sections surrounding a middle circle. This weekend I planted plenty of dianthus (the usual, not amazon variety), shorter varieties of salvia, a row of tiny floss flowers, and -- I hope it's not a mistake -- yarrow. I've never planted yarrow before as I understand it can be invasive. But butterflies love it and our nursery offers a variety with mixed colors. I am hoping that this hybrid won't be so bad. If it is, I will be pulling up yarrow for the next few years. But the roses will be there, so there should be a good foundation. Once we finish the bed, which should be this week, I will post a photo of it.
We like our garden to up to standard by Easter, when we want our family and friends to be able to enjoy it. The deadline is good for us. There has been a lot of gardening going on around here!
In the meantime, it helps to see a few areas doing well, to enjoy a lovely bloom here and there. It makes it all worthwhile.
I wish you all a good week and happy gardening!