Plants for Lazy Gardeners

fool-proof plant ideasI adore having plants and flowers in the yard but tending to them is not how I’d like to spend my time. So my question this summer has become: How to have a pretty garden with the least amount of effort. And with a bit of research on resilient plants for east coast living, we may have just figured it out.

Our shared-yard had been neglected for over two years but, thankfully, the tenants before us structured a garden with lazy people in mind. They tiered the perimeter of the yard with wood and stone to make nice raised plant beds so even when the garden starts looking pretty chaotic, it still has decent structure. They also made the brilliant choice of buying the most self-sufficient, gorgeous, shade-loving plant: The Hosta. I know this photo looks a little grim but any lush green you see on the ground is all hosta.

With good structure and hearty plants on our mind, we headed to the nursery and started anew.

how to put up latticeHanging Lattice
We love that our former tenants placed lattice along the back wall but they fell a little short when it came to the sides. To cover the not-so-cute chain link fences we put up more lattice (that’s our lovely neighbor Bridget helping us secure the wood) and planted clematis to grow over it. Clematis has exotic, star-shaped flowers and vines that supposedly climb like crazy. So in a year or so, the hope is to see just a hint of lattice and a wall of fabulous foliage.

plant-ideas hostasAmazing Hostas
Knowing the kind of abuse the hostas can take, we naturally bought more. This time we planted Blue Cadet Hosta to get a little more color and height.

plant-ideas-lily-turfPromising Lily Turf
So our garden didn’t turn into a hosta farm, we decided to branch out with a bit of Lily Turf. These spunky grasses will supposedly spread out to make nice groundcover, grow violet-blue flowers in the summer and dark berries in the fall. We are banking on them being fairly independent in the future but for now we are watering them regularly.

Hydrangeas and beyond
In the front left of the yard and along the back wall, we planted white hydrangeas. Tall, wide, and packed with flower clusters, hydrangeas have presence. And in white, they should still provide a little shimmer at night.

I’ll report back at the end of summer with hopefully some progress to share but in the meantime, if anyone has any good gardening tips . . . we are all ears!


  1. Mike Howard said:

    I also think that lattice will blend very well once the rain and snow weathers it a bit more (like the lattice along the back wall). Anyone have any suggestions for good grass seed?

    July 12, 2010
  2. Adrian said:

    Nice work Anne! I can't believe I actually have something to contribute on this topic but back when I was in CT I used to have a few canna red king humbert plants which I loved! They eventually got to be about 10 feet tall and had a sick deep red color to them. Only downside was that they didn't flower for too long, but still looked really cool and we're pretty easy to keep.

    July 14, 2010
  3. Suzanne Byrd said:

    How did the lattice work out? Did the clematis work out?

    April 23, 2011
    • Hi Suzanne! The lattice worked out great and one of the clematis grew like crazy and the other shriveled. That’s last season’s review, we’ll see if spring perks them up again! Best of luck!

      April 23, 2011
  4. MomHomeGuide said:

    Hi! A chain link fence separates my yard from a school playground, and I’d love to hang lattice on the fence. How did you attach your lattice to the fence? I’d really appreciate your tips!

    April 24, 2013

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