I shared a series, part 1, part 2 and part 3 a little while back on our inspiration and plans for redoing our front garden beds.

The goal? To redo our gardens so that we not only liked them, but that we could also manage maintaining them.

This picture was taken three years ago.

June 2009 115

You may look at this picture and say hey, nothing wrong with that – it looks nice.

And and I would agree – for about 1 week.

You see I am not a good “plant picker” and all of those pretty Salvia plants only last a short time and then look yucky (technical gardening description). Then, they have to cut back - sometime multiple times.

Same goes for the lavender in this bed.

June 2009 111

Don’t even get me started on how overgrown the rhododendrons are at this point – they will be chopped back this fall.

Not only do the Salvia die off, many of them self seed and they grow all haphazard. I wouldn’t mind haphazard if they stayed for a while – but they don’t.

June 2009 125

So, everything that didn’t work was pulled and placed in a new location

We have spent the last few weeks getting everything freshened up and this is where we are now.


One of things I decided was to simplify my plants choices. We primarily are working with sedum, spirea (spelling anyone?), one salvia remains, boxwoods, evergreens and hydrangeas.

I did add a few red annuals in for something new to try and to add some color.


The rock wall was built by Hubby when we first moved in. I love the contrast of the rustic aspect of the rocks with the more tailored details of the evergreens and boxwood - fits our style pretty well.

I also decided to add color and character in the items that were brought in other than plants. I decided to approach my gardens like I do inside my house and add accessories out here as well.

The front porch has bright pillows.


The walkway is filled with colorful planters of annuals.


I spoke in my earlier posts of the idea of the wicker containers and of adding boxwoods to containers – both of which were Pinterest inspired.


I used varying sizes and heights and even lifted this one on a plant stand.


I also loved the idea of adding annuals in with the boxwoods. When these get a little larger I will be able to provide them with some more shape – but for now I like them just fine.


I use to always keep my containers closer to the stairs – but I like the idea of pulling them out a little more now.


I also decided to add some vintage elements– so this old chair I have had forever with no seat got a maple bucket, a wagon wheel side table and solar lantern.


I had used these chairs last fall with mums around my garage – but now like the idea of actually placing them within the garden.

I also added one with a maple bucket in the raised bed.IMG_2665

I am still holding out for the perfect birdhouse to be placed in this area, but I haven’t found it yet.

I also got a little sentimental and added a sundial because they remind me of my Grandfather.


And I got a little quirky with my little turtle friend. IMG_2663

He told me to bring him home when I bought the sundial – how do you say no to that face?

So that pretty much sums it up – my philosophy is to simplify your plant selection, bring in character and color with vintage and new accessories and have some fun.

How about you – how do you approach your gardens?


As always, thanks for reading.