Springtime in Perry Park
is something we both love! So, we have poured our hearts and souls into
creating an oasis for ourselves here.
We are trying to create a landscape that might have been here since
1929, when the house was first built, with touches of inspiration from
some of the old estate gardens of this region and elsewhere. Most of
all, we wanted the gardens to look old! So, we started planting even
before we began work on the house.
Our first project was begun during our second year here, in 1992. That involved tidying up a badly neglected area by the garage on the (left side of the house, out of view below), which is shown on a later page. We removed tangles of mosquito-ridden forsythias and added azaleas and rhododendrons beneath straggling Mountain Laurels there.
In our third year (1993), we hired someone to paint the house and a couple of its upstairs rooms. We continued with weeding, removed more forsythias from the right side of the house, moved rocks around and began the stone work along the steps from the driveway up to the patio area in back of the house.
1994 we hired an old, semi-retired landscapist, who knew the old plants
and landscapes of this area well. He helped us select some evergreens
for the back yard... and then mistakenly planted them in the front
yard, shown above! Amused, we decided to go along with it. Those were
planted in the fall of 1994. At the same time, Tom began the work
on the lawn. .. with the glorious results you see above.
Click image to enlarge.
The grape hyacinths below the cherry tree now thickly carpet their space... hundreds of them peek out of the euonymous ground cover.
And, I'm proud and thrilled to say, they bloom precisely with the cherry tree each spring!
But, I never seem to get a photo of their peak display.
The cherry tree blooms again in November (species autumnalis).
2001, standing atop our hill
That same year, we started making preparations to work in the back yard. We dug out hundreds of rocks and small boulders, uncovered old patio stones and the rare and long-neglected plant. We set about creating rock borders here and there, and then we dugged, tilled, and enriched the soil for the work ahead. First to go in the ground out back was a trio of crimson azaleas in a prominent spot, visible from inside the house ( shown above). Sometime after that I made a small and unsuccessful start on some flower beds .... learning that there was too much shade here for most flowers. A couple years later, a tornado felled three large oak trees in the next-door neighbor's back yard, opening our gardens to much needed, morning sunlight!
image to enlarge.
May 2001, Lower Patio looking down toward the driveway
Stone steps curve down the hill out of view.
May 2001, Upper Patio
The Sweet Woodruff herbal ground cover is the only herb that grows in shade.
It now covers the bed with its tiny white blooms.
An old concrete pond is out of view at the back end of this patio.
Click images to enlarge.
Sometime after that I started a Woodland Garden of mostly native plants, shown on the right above. I also made a small and unsuccessful start on some flower beds .... learning that there was too much shade here for most flowers. A year of so later, a tornado felled three large oak trees in the next-door neighbor's back yard, opening our gardens to much needed, morning sunlight!