I thought it might be a good day to take a tour of the back garden. When you enter our gate you are greeted by our Shade Garden. Somebody planted a Southern Magnolia a little close tot he patio and pool at some point in our garden's history. It provides amazing shade, but it is also so messy. This is actually one of the first gardens we installed after moving here. It was born out of necessity as much as a desire for beauty. All the soil in the yard would wash down onto the patio. The retaining wall solved that problem. There a mixture of perennials and a few shrubs in this garden. Right now I'm really enjoy the hardy alstroemeria and all of our potted begonias (all along the wall) in this garden. It has a little fence around it because our dogs and the squirrels can't declare a truce. We won't get into the specifics of their was right now.
Next you come to our in-process Ruin Garden. The idea is that it will look like a "ruin" when it completed. The edging is stacked like this on purpose and there is a set of chairs and table as well as a slightly damaged chimera in this garden. Right now were also using it to house some potted dayliles we inherited from a neighbor. We aren't sure what we're going to do with them as none of them have turned out to be anything outstanding. We have a few fabulous Vitex planted to create sort of a wall and enclose the yard a bit more. I think the best feature of this garden right now is how we have some of the plants growing through the furniture. It obviously needs work, but it's coming along.
Next you come to an area that will at some point become part of a play area. Right now it has a large Pecan tree, a Japaneses Maple, a few Buckeyes and a triceratops. She arrived last night and is fabulous. We may paint her (we're thinking turquoise) but for now she's staying in her natural aluminium state. I think she's going to need a name!
This next area is really really really in-process (notice a theme for this part of the garden). It will eventually be a fenced in pallet garden to house our daylily seedlings from our hybridizing until we can decide if they are worth keeping. Our dogs love to run. Really love to run. They respect large plants and established gardens, but since these won't be big plants we decided to add a fence for insurance.
Finally we get to a part of the garden that is more completed, because really nothing is ever totally finished. This is the Tropical Garden the surrounds our pool. It really looks it's best from inside the pool and I promise if you ever come over when it's swimming weather, we will let you in for a looksie.
Our thought here is for it to look like everything was growing into everything else. Very lush and full. We have accomplished this to a fault and have to make some changes this fall to make sure there continues to be space for everything.
This garden features a lot of Alocasia and Colocasia, as well as banana and our tetraploid daylilies. We have some other plants, like hardy hibiscus to add color, and some others, like our papaya, to add interest.
The Barrier Garden does not look it's best this time of year. The daylilies are bloomed out, though we have a few rebloomers and it so hot that it takes on a sort of crispy brown look. We have plans to add to this garden and restructure it a little so it doesn't look so sad in the heat of the summer. The best part of it right now, it the grape we're training on the fence. Once again, this garden is part of the Dog vs. Squirrel War and therefore has a fence. It will be upgraded eventually.
Here is Petunia, our marginated tortoise's garden. He (yes, Petunia is a he) lives outside fulltime and loves him some hibiscus flowers. They figure heavily into his design. He garden is all about what a marginated tortoise likes to eat.
Here is the last part of my vegetable garden. I have failed a number of time at growing veggies, but I do okay with herbs. So when we converted the vegetable containers this past fall, we left this as it was. the red is starting to fade, so it may get a little re-fresh this winter with some spray paint. Maybe more turquoise.
Our last stop is the working part of the garden. You can see our pallet compost bin in the background. We also keep some homeless container plantings here, but the best part is the greenhouse. This time of year it's empty except for the carnivorous plants. It will soon be full of daylily seeds germinating and some succulents cutting rooting.
Hope you enjoyed the little tour of what we have going on right now. It's amazing how fast things change (and how slow projects get done in Texas in the summer). How is your garden looking this summer?