This week in the garden . . . garden “rooms”

Because we have over two acres of landscaped area around our home, the scale is so massive that over the years I’ve developed different “rooms” or areas in the garden that are separated from each other, and used for different purposes.  It’s really the only practical and logical way to landscape such a huge area, and it gives me an outlet for the many different plant groupings, styles, and uses that I am inspired to pursue.  Here’s a look at some of them:

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The front entrance faces north, so it’s the perfect location for shade-loving plants.  Our large front porch – perfect for sitting on the wicker chairs and knitting away a warm summer afternoon! – is fronted by hydrangeas, rhododendrons, camellias, bleeding hearts, astilbe, and hostas.  Most bloom in the spring in a palette of pinks, but the hydrangeas, in colors ranging from flame pink to deep purple, add color into the fall.  The front walkway is flanked by two snowbell trees, and bordered with a row of lavender on either side.  Hanging geranium pots and two large pots of mixed annuals add some throughout-the-summer color, as well.

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Here is the “chicken farm” – a fenced back pasture area where the chickens can free range, but are also safe from coyotes and other predators.  You can see the combo chicken and bunnies house here – in the background are numerous fruit trees, which also benefit from the fencing because it keeps the deer out (although not the birds, which unfortunately pretty much decimate the cherries every year).  We have cherries, apples, and a bumper crop of asian pears.

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The hydrangea walk is shaded with big, beautiful aspen trees and the understory is all different varieties of hydrangeas, including oakleaf, lace cap, and blue nikko.  The walk is also bordered with rose of sharon bushes, and leads to a pagoda that is well-shaded by a willow tree and has climbing hydrangeas working their way up its posts.  This is a perfect hidden shady spot for hot afternoons.

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Another shaded area, the waterfall garden on the back patio is centered around a stone fireplace table and benches.  Japanese maple, hostas, and ferns grow on the banks of the waterfall and small pond, and the sound of water is nice backdrop noise for an evening with a cup of coffee around the table’s fire pit.

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This is a view looking down at the vegetable garden – fenced and then wired to keep the deer out, with blueberries and dwarf fruit trees growing in front, and raised beds and a small greenhouse inside.

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The swimming pool is an entirely separate “room,” with a raised berm bordering the eastern side where full sun perennials like russian sage, spanish lavender, guara, and gooseneck are planted.

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The hammock is a favorite location for a mid-afternoon nap, located at the southern end of the pool.

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We brought this swing with us when we moved here, and it anchors the south-eastern corner of the pool area, right under a birch tree that has grown SO tall since I planted it less than a decade ago.

Here are two views of the new sand pit volleyball court, trampoline, and surfboard swings – the “beach” we constructed next to the pool area:

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The cottage – an outbuilding that houses our workout room, steam room, and well house – creates another garden “room”, with several seating areas – a stone bench flanked by cherry trees that bloom beautifully in the spring:

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And a stone patio with a grape arbor that provides a lot of shade in the summer, and a beautiful vantage point for watching the hummingbirds fight over the bee balm and the black-eyed susans.

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Several years ago, I planted a “room” of conifers to create a fire pit in the center of a forested setting – less than ten years later, it’s already grown far beyond what I imagined, and has given me the exact look I was going for – cedar adirondack chairs gathered around a wood-burning fire pit, tucked into a secret clearing in the middle of a “forest.”

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Finally, here is our rose garden, inspired by the book, “The Secret Garden.”  It’s a circular “room” bordered by ten-foot privet honeysuckle, creating a completely enclosed space.  You can see into the “secret garden” through the two iron gates – inside is a trickling water fountain, surrounded by different varieties of roses, and several benches flanked by arbors with climbing roses.  Just how I imagined it! 

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2 comments on “This week in the garden . . . garden “rooms”

  1. When do you ever sleep, Andrea? I enjoyed my walk around “Andrea’s Garden” last week when I thought you all were still in bed….funny me! ellen

  2. We also have two acres that we would like to divide up into small “rooms”. Do you have an aerial view of your yard?

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