Saturday, 10 May 2014

Gardening Inspiration

One of the first major projects that we'll be tackling at the new house is the gardens.  Although I'd love to spend my time off this summer stripping wallpaper, I know that can wait for the fall and winter, while the gardening season is much shorter.  The previous owner sure did love her gardens!  It seems like almost every square inch of the yard is currently filled with overgrown shrubs and plants.  We've been told that the gardens used to be stunning, but since the owner's wife passed away a few years ago, they have basically been left untouched.

These pictures were taken a few weeks ago when we took Finnegan for a walk around the property.  As you can see, there are gardens everywhere - along the sidewalk, driveway, walkway, fence, in front of the house, the retaining wall, and even many in the middle of the yard.  I love to garden, but this is just too much!

Our first goal is to eliminate the gardens along the sidewalk, the driveway and the walkway.  We will also cut back some of the plants in front of the house, remove all of the vines from the house, and dig up most of the gardens in the middle of the yard and in front of the retaining wall.  This will leave us with some plants in front of the house, the gardens along the fence, and the beautiful magnolia tree.  That should be manageable!

We recently purchased 6 panels of wrought iron fencing from kijiji.  At $25 a panel, how could we say no? We are planning on using that to divide the upper and lower yards.  This will keep the dog in one area, help to define the two spaces and provide some privacy in the upper yard (where the hot tub and our dining area will be).  We are hoping to build an arbour with a gate to provide access between the upper and lower yards.  The wood retaining wall will eventually get a makeover with some ironstone like the one below.

We both love the formal and clean look of boxwood hedges with white hydrangeas.  We have three hydrangeas at the back of our current yard, and we know that they are a must-have for the new house.  We are also hoping to build some structures throughout the garden to provide shade for different seating areas.  The wood fence on the north side of the yard is also in need of some TLC, so we would like to add some extra detail to it to make it a little more formal looking which will hopefully match the style of the house better.

That's what we have so far.  Let me know what you think. All of these inspiration pictures, along with many others can be found on my Pinterest board called Cochrane-Gardens.  We know that it won't all be achieved within the first year, but it's good to have a vision and a plan!