Birth of a Garden
After years of dreaming, months of planning, and weeks of soil preparation, my serenity garden has finally been born. Last week, I finished digging and amending the soil for this flower bed and went shopping for plants. Then one afternoon, I gathered all the plants together (both new purchases and divisions from existing plants in my garden) and got to work planting. I thoroughly enjoy this part of the gardening process; it’s so gratifying to finally see results. And digging holes in my amended sandy soil is not at all difficult, so planting does not require the kind of hard physical labor involved in preparing the soil.
Once I had gathered all my plants together, I spotted them around in the planting area before I began to dig. I often find at this stage that the spacing is different in the three-dimensional garden than it seemed on the two-dimensional plan. I also sometimes see combinations that do not work the way I imagined them and make some last-minute changes.
Because many of the plants in this part-shade woodland garden require moist soil, I mixed a sprinkling of Soil-Moist polymer granules into each planting hole before putting in the plant. Then I back-filled the hole about 2/3 of the way, watered thoroughly, and finished backfilling. When the planting was done, I put down a soaker hose and covered it with mulch; this will make it easy to give the new planting a deep watering weekly until frost to help the plants get settled in.
This is how the serenity garden area looked last year:
Here is how it looks today:
There are still some spaces in the serenity garden waiting for plants. Some of these are spring bulbs that will be planted later in the fall. Others are perennials that are more readily available or more appropriately planted in the spring. I put in a marker showing where each of these plants should go.
This garden is very much in its infancy, with plants far apart and all roughly the same size; but that will change soon enough. I’m already anticipating what my serenity garden will look like next year.