I have this thing about flowers, especially outdoor flowers. And so I seem to move to homes where the gardens have been neglected for years. With the Lakehouse, we are moving onto our fourth summer of redeveloping the landscaping and building perennial beds.
The love for perennials comes from my mum, and a childhood spent visiting garden centres across southern Ontario.My goal with ever garden is to have something flowering from early spring to late fall. Which takes some planning, and doesn’t happen in one year. I learnt by experience that it takes about five years for things to settle in and really start to show off.
Which is nice because, as I said, summer number four is just around the corner.
The original owners of this property did an enormous amount of work in developing tiered beds that follow the rock outcrop which flows across the middle of this lot, roughly parallel to the lake. The different heights and pathways are perfect for cat resting places, where they can observe, or doze as they please. There are also plenty of trees for climbing to escape overly bouncy dogs (we have 3).
But the owners prior to us we not gardeners, and we moved into a landscape overgrown with thyme gone wild, and copious cedar hedges… and not many flowers. The first year, quite late in the fall, the perennial cuttings from our Sudbury garden finally were planted, and everyone crossed fingers for a good winter (one with lots of snow cover). Almost everything made it through, thankfully.
Each year now, I add: tulips, crocus, roses, grapes, snap dragons, thistles, lavender, day lilies (with special thanks to Carole Ann of DIG Daylilies in Field with her beautiful specimens),… well you get the idea. And now I also move plants around when they seem unhappy, and have begun to edit the landscape by removing hedges and trimming up view blocking branches.
My husband even gifted me a greenhouse to support my green habit. When it’s time, I will share the opening of the greenhouse and migration of this year’s inhabitants.
The biggest lesson I am learning (so far) with this garden is simplicity. If I can keep perspectives simple, and stay well grounded, then everything turns out beautifully.
Until next time.