Today’s photos come from Tess H.
I am a Southerner transplanted to the Midwest. I have probably an acre total in mixed shrubs and perennials. I just told my husband I was going to start transitioning out of perennials and only have shrub gardens. I have a few areas already dedicated to different panicle hydrangeas (Hydrangea paniculata, Zones 3–8) that are lovely, but it is a big step to break away from my high-maintenance gardens. I’m in my later 60s, want to travel, and can’t keep up. In the fall, when I’m spending about 80 hours cleaning up the gardens, I want to be done with it all. I have a particularly wonderful area dedicated to sedums surrounded by alyssum intermixed with phlox and fairy roses. Another area is heavily planted with another type of sedum backdropped by barberry, spirea, lilies, and daylilies. I designed a lot of my garden to be seen from the upstairs window, so it’s pretty unique that way.
It is so hard to admit you can’t keep up a garden. Getting rid of the plants is heartbreaking, but I’m hoping to give a call to my local garden club to find a new home for the plants, so that should help lessen the blow.
High maintenance but very beautiful, these pink lilies (Lilium, Asiatic group, Zones 4–9) make quite a display.
Masses of pink roses echo the color of the lilies.
This garden is designed to be beautiful from the ground and, as seen here, from an upstairs window. We all spend a lot of time looking at our gardens from indoors, so it is well worth considering the view from your windows when designing your garden.
The same beds as seen from ground level.
Pink garden phlox (Phlox paniculata, Zones 4–8)
Huge masses of Sedum backed by daylilies (Hemerocallis) make for a simple yet dramatic entrance.
Panicle hydrangeas in bloom. It can be hard to admit that it is time to simplify a garden, but choosing shrubs over perennials is a great way to keep a beautiful space while making it less of a burden to maintain.
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