By Kim Charles

My handy husband built a limestone platform to level the area underneath the wisteria arbor and added stone benches.  Imagine my surprise when the wisteria bloomed wildly this spring.  Proof positive that root disturbance (to be nice we call it root pruning) will bring on lots and lots of flowers.


Victoria of south central Indiana has created a special focal point.

"Sad circumstances often make for engaging changes.  Three years ago our huge beech tree had to be cut down.  It dominated the backyard and provided lots of wonderful shade for the patio.  Since it was hollow from top to bottom it had to be removed but the wide base, about four feet in diameter, filled with zinnias, ornamental sweet potatoes, and nasturtiums now makes a great focal point.  Planting out this new sunny area and adding to existing beds and renovating others in the back yard has created a lot of work for me but has been, and continues to be, an interesting challenge.  I hope you enjoy the pics."

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A large area around the tree was covered in thick ivy which had to be dug out.  Plantings in place now are mostly shallow rooted varieties since the tree's big anchor roots are still very much in evidence so anything with a large or deep root ball will have to wait.

Looking to the north the existing border on the right has been extended on both ends.


This area, east of the tree stump, now gets much more reflected sunlight and some plants are happier for that...others have been relocated.


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