I 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.
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.
Promising 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!