Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Curb appeal?

As the back garden (side garden really) has become our entertainment area and the area where most of my plants are growing, the entrance to the garden has slowly evolved.  At first we used the little wooden gate, and I tried to get visitors to wander through the little path I had created.  Most visitors would have none of that and would rather squeeze between the post and the car in the carport!
Then the decision was made to permanently close off one of the big double gates, and use the other big gate as the actual entrance into the garden.  Having the path visible through the gate did the trick and suddenly I had created curb appeal!  This weekend I decided to extend the front bed, therefore leading the eye directly to the gate. Don't you think the two white pots seem to shout - hey come this way?

   I think it flows nicely, and I have planted one cordeline, but also needed another plant to fill in the remaining space. Cordelines are just the best plants around here - if you want another plant - you just cut the top off and plonk it into the ground and it will grow.  I need to cut off the yellowing leaves, but really wanted to fill in the area for now.  I have to now re-train everyone not to walk through this area!
 I was thinking of a yesterday today and tomorrow.  My mom has a lovely one at her front entrance and I think it creates a welcoming feel, with the sweet smelling flowers.  My mom-in-law offered to get me one for mothers day but there were none available.  I could also grow another hibiscus as the variegated one is growing nicely.  Since the bed is open back and front there is good circulation for the plants which hibiscus seem to like.  In the end I just inserted two cuttings and will see how they go - one is very much like an ixora but with fleshier leaves and branches. It doesn't seem to suffer from sooty mold the way ixora does here.  That flowers most of the year with lovely red or yellow flowers and is a great butterfly attractant.  The other is the Chinese lantern hibiscus - I love how the buds form.  In the end I mostly create new plants from what I have already, that creates continuity and the price is right!



This bed has just been an accumulation of plants and now I find I want some sequence to the planting. The foliage is tending towards green and white variegated, with a few Cordelines to break the monotony.   Along the front I have kalanchoe and will fill in the areas to make that a bit of a border along the front.  They should start to bloom soon and don't mind the full sun. I am finding that I do like to have stretches of the same kind of plant as a border, but different borders for the different beds.  This has the little wooden edge and it holds the kalanchoe upright instead of flopping down.


The bougainvillea to the left is growing like mad, and we would like the entire side fence to be covered with it - maybe another bush will be added halfway.  This will shade some of the morning sun from hitting the front door.  Originally there was a big shade cloth over this area, but I am liking the way it is turning out with vegetation providing the shade instead. That bed is quite messy, and might be the next area I try to organize.  Maybe I crammed it originally with too  many different types of plants, but now which ones should go and which should stay?  I love the way the bleeding heart adds little bright spots of white in amongst the bouganvilla.
Next weekend I think I need to cut back some dead leaves, tidy it all up and give the whole area  a good drink of seaweed tea!

4 comments:

  1. AA: Your new improvement of the side garden looks great! I love those two white pots, and they do lead the path nicely. Love the cordyline contrast with white and green variegated plants! I also pack lots of plants into one flower bed since I created mine, and I have been thinking maybe I should give it a little bit more theme :)

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  2. It looks lovely and would definitely entice me in ;)

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  3. Ami, I wish I could say that I have a theme before I start, but mostly I just cram lots of plants in and take out the ones that don't fit later! I do think an edging makes all the difference though!
    Desiree,
    cool, thank you - you will stay for a cup of tea then?

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  4. That entranceway looks really inviting - but then I can't resist a garden path.
    Gardening in the tropics is wonderful when you can poke a cordyline into the soil and it just grows.

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