Digging In

Insight into garden design, photography and growing life.

August 25, 2009

Planning, shopping and planning

Yeah! I'm so excited to have finally reached a decision on my landscape plan. I had a rough layout in my mind and then went to my favorite nursery to be inspired. Word of caution, I do not recommend buying plants, especially pricey foundation plants, without a firm landscape plan in place. Of course that is exactly what I did. My hubby just shook his head. Happily I'm the one in charge of the landscape design and I don't feel the need to ask permission. This way I only need to argue with myself.

So I've been back to the nursery two more times, reevaluating my purchases. I originally bought the most beautifully-formed, container-grown Mexican Redbud. Once I saw it I knew I would regret not buying it as they aren't easy to find in large size with good form. I instantly decided this would be my specimen tree. Luckily it still is on the final plan. This was definitely a keeper.

The second plant I bought was a very large container-grown Lacebark Elm. Oh, it's so pretty and will have beautiful bark for winter interest. But this one got returned (much easier do to if you have not taken any of the plants home and go back the very next day to change your mind). I decided this moderate growing tree would be too big for space and would shade out other potential plantings and the lawn. So I exchanged it for two white 'Nachez' Crepe Myrtles. Another tree I had always admired, in addition to the redbud. These crepe myrtles can get pretty big too, but will still only be half the canopy width of the elm at maturity. Now where to put them, and then what?

The third plant I bought on my first outing was a lovely dwarf crepe myrtle called 'True Blue.' I had never seen the almost blue flower color before on a crepe, so that's why I chose it- blue is my favorite flower color. I have since returned that too, but it's still on my short list. So I may buy it again!

So after all the hemming and hawing, here are my final purchased selections:
  • 3 Crepe Myrtles 'Nachez'
  • 1 Mexican Redbud
  • 1 Viburnum 'Rusty'
My shopping list for the tree sale next month includes 2 'Teddy Bear' Magnolias and 1 holly (either Needlepoint or Nellie R. Stevens) for hedging. Other possibilities include 2 dwarf wax myrtles as evergreens between the crepe myrtles, 3 'Cassandra' hollies for border edging, and maybe a weeping Yaupon Holly or a 'Possum Haw' holly for winter interest. Of course I should be patient and purchase these secondary plants at a later date. We'll see.

Now I just need to send off my plans to the HOA for approval, get permits from the city, move my fence line up, rip up grass, find a landscaper move and convert sprinklers, and to pick up/deliver and plant these big old container plants. Oh, and figure out how to pay for it. Easy, right?