Please, please, walk this way Mr.Plumber. See the path, Mr. Electrician? Do not go to the back door, you might see a scary, overweight lady, standing in her knickers, making a cup of tea.
One of the annoying things about the way the house is laid out on the lot is “people” coming to the back door, the kitchen door to be more precise. And it is glass!!!
When Kilbourne Grove was originally built in the late 1800’s the road that runs beside the house was the driveway to the stable, behind the house, and the front door, faced the street, 250 feet away. Over the years, the front yard was sold off piece by piece, until there is only 20 feet separating our front door form the side of the neighbours house. When people pull into our driveway, it is logical for them to go to the back door.
This had to change!!!
When I took my garden design course last winter, we had to come up with a client and design a garden for them. I decided to pick myself (after all, I am a very easy customer), I was taking this course for my own benefit, not to change my career. Since it was a very short course, and I have a large garden (not as large as some, but I intend to landscape every square inch), I had to choose an area to focus on. I chose to work on the side yard.
This is the area that would bring visitors from the driveway to the front door. I need to block off the view of the kitchen and back door, and a fence will be built linking house and garage.
Then a path, leading from the driveway, along the side of the house, turning south at the end to the front door.
This is the plan that I drew for my teacher. None of gardens south of the house are on, this part took forever to draw!
Ok, I should have taken a picture of the legend, but I can walk you through it.
You enter from the driveway (left on the diagram), through an arbour, and walk along a pea gravel path. On your left (top of the diagram) is a row of Emerald cedars (B), underplanted by European ginger(L). On your fight, a row of Limelight hydrangea(C), with a boxwood hedge(K), this is also underplanted with ginger. You walk to the end and make a sharp turn to the right. I am thinking about having another arbour here. I also am adding a bench here, for those of you to tired from the long walk to the front door. The rows of Emerald cedars and hydrangea continue all the way to the front door.
N on the diagram was the blue spruce that Ian and I moved. Its story is here.
The rectangular box near the entrance arbour is another small garden. As the house is indented here, but I wanted the path to stay straight, this gave me room for a planting bed. It will also be edged with box, and a specimen tree(A) will be planted here. A magnolia, redbud or perhaps a dogwood.
There is a picket fence running from the house, north towards the street, along the path to the property line on the east, with a gate at the front sidewalk.
You might notice a gap between the fence(J) attaching the house and garage and the picket fence. This is where the greenhouse will be built. (One day).
We have already started on this project.
The line of Emerald cedars on the north or street side of the garden. The tulips were there when we purchased the house. The developer had sodded over them. I was very surprised when they came up in the spring.
Here you can see the indent, where the old kitchen wing is narrower than the main house.
There is nothing between these cedars and the street, hopefully they will give us the illusion of privacy.
A planting plan is always fluid and open to change. When we were planting these, I changed it slightly. The cedars had been so cheap ($20 each) that I decided to make a bit of a niche, bumping it out to match the bay window in the library. This can be used for a bench, or perhaps some container planting.
This is where the second arbour would go. Right behind those grasses, and in line with that white trailer. That is not ours, it is our next door neighbours, we are storing it in our driveway for the winter, in exchange for him snow blowing the drive, yay! Sorry, Edith, about the rocks, they were there when we purchased, and have not been moved yet. Talk about someone just lining them up! I am hoping to have a stacked stone retaining wall built in the future.
Seen from the other side. That big rock is natural, it would have to stay.
And from the street. See how the line of Emerald cedars marches along the side of the house. The retaining wall would start at the left at the sidewalk and follow the curve of those lined up rocks and end at the big buried rock.
Next, would be digging out all those very old, and very large shrubs beside the house, so the hydrangea and the other row of cedars can go in. I can feel my back ache already.