• Becca Clifton

Tips for designing a low maintenance flower bed.

Flower beds are an easy way to increase curb appeal and make your home more welcoming. With a well thought-out garden design, it doesn’t have to be a lot of work, and you can have continual color and interest all year long. Below is a sample design plan and a few color options!


1. MAKE A PLAN

I have learned a lot about gardening by trial and error. I recommend making a plan for your garden first, below is an example!



I’m first going to show you how to plan your new garden then get into some of my design tips and some plant options.


2. REMOVE EXISTING SOD

Now it's time to get your garden ready for planting. Work off the plan and remove all the sod in the areas you want to plant. Dig down about 3 to 4 inches to remove the top layer of grass.

3. ADD GARDEN SOIL

Once you've removed all the sod get a few loads of garden soil to fill it back up. You want the garden to be just slightly higher than the rest of of the lawn to allow for proper water runoff.

4. PLANT YOUR SHRUBS AND PERENNIALS

Plant away from the foundation about 18 inches. This allows more moisture and air flow to get to the plants. Dig a small hole where you want your plant to go, plop it in, and pack the soil around it.


5. WATER, WEED, AND FERTILIZE

After the plants are in the ground, water them well for a few days, and then occasionally all summer. You can also throw some slow release fertilizer to give the roots some extra help. If you want you can add a thick layer of mulch to keep the weeds down, but otherwise just pull the weeds as they come up.


NOW HERE ARE MY FIVE TOP TIPS FOR COMING UP WITH A GREAT GARDEN DESIGN:


1. ADD COLOR ALL SUMMER LONG

April: Yellow, Pink, Purple | Spring flowering bulbs.

May: Purple | Bloomerang Lilac, Beautiful Blue Eyes Iris.

June: Pink | Peony, Hosta, Japanese Lilac

July: Yellows & Pinks | daylillies, Banana Cream Shasta Daisy.

August : Maroon | Jose Aubergine Sedum, Deep Pink Hydrangea.


2. INCLUDE PLANTS FOR WINTER INTEREST

It’s a good idea to add an evergreen shrub in your garden design to give some interest in the winter. I love the variegated leaf of euonymus. Ornamental grasses, like red switch grass and blue dune lyme grass are nice things to add as well! If you wait until the spring to prune the grasses, it gives some nice interest in the winter with the tall grass plumes.


3. ADD A VARIETY OF FOLIAGE COLORS

Adding in multiple types of foliage colors and textures like dark green, lime green, blues and reds makes it pop! The best low maintenance plants and shrubs with deep red leaves include Heuchera (coral bells), Barberry shrub, and Purple Leaf Sandcherry.


4. PLANT IN ODD NUMBERS

Ideal groups of three! This adds repetition and cohesion. For the remaining plants, just plant one of each!


5. HAVE ONE STATEMENT PLANT

This really makes your garden stand out! A lot of people like the Japanese Lilac tree! I'm not sure if that's what I would pick because apparently it gets pretty big!


Has anyone used one of these trees in their front flower bed so close to your house? What is your experience? I’d love to know! Do you have any other garden design tips? What are some of your favorite low maintenance perennials?





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