Our patio has been functional for a few months now, and we have even had a few pizza parties. I haven’t yet reported on the plantings around it, so this post outlines my rationale for the landscape design.
It’s a challenging slope – maybe 50 degrees. WWOOFers (WorldWide Opportunities on Organic Farms) and I have weeded, pulled, hacked, cut (ourselves and the weeds) broom, BLACKBERRY, grasses with great deep roots, horsetail, and other minor weeds (I wonder what the lesser weeds would think about that put-down?) more than once from the same notorious slope. We have unearthed a metal gate, broken-up pavement, whole rotting logs and construction wood, various garden pots, a couple of well-rusted carpenters’ tools, beer cans and bottles, and a partial pair of eyeglasses. We found the hydro pole box, which has been missing for years.
In the landscaping fraternity/sorority, there appears to be a real bias against landscape weed barrier cloth. The common wisdom is that seeds come from above, not from below the cloth. I contend that the worst weeds (blackberry, grasses, and horsetail) DO come from below – their roots run laterally and deep and it’s quite impossible to get them all, even if your slope isn’t 50 degrees. Disturbed soil is particularly susceptible, because the broken roots/rhizomes react with a survival instinct, by sending out many new shoots at each break.
I actually enjoy weeding, contemplative but lonely a pursuit as it is. But, there is a limit to the amount of weeding (and the kind of weeding) that I want to do. I envision myself reading in the patio hammock some day, not weeding.
I planted those and forest ferns such as sword fern – they stay green through the winter, and will help to stabilize the slope.
Thought has been given to where the sun sets – red Japanese maple will filter the evening light on that side of the patio.
My colour theme for the front yard is red and white, so I have bought and been gifted red and white flowering shrubs (rhodies, a magnolia, peonies, some dahlias).
I must remind myself of the lessons I have learned about mature trees and shrubs, and try not to overcrowd my new plantings.
Thought has also been given to planting for privacy. The centre of the patio is visible from the street and from the neighbours’ house. We need those trees and shrubs to grow tall enough to provide some sense of enclosure.
This is the last post in the Patio Series. Here are the other posts in the series: Patio Preliminaries, Patio Progress, Patio Pour, Patio Posts, Patio Pierres, Patio Purniture, Patio Pinally Pinished, and Patio Pizza (you can see I got a little crazy on Palliteration!)
Sharing with: Brambleberry Cottage, A Delightsome Life, Have a Daily Cup of Mrs Olson, Lamberts Lately, The HomeAcre Hop, Green Thumb Thursday, French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home, Fishtail Cottage, One More Time Events, The Chicken Chick, Boogieboard Cottage, Little Red House, Creative Country Mom, The Dedicated House, Rooted in Thyme