The Woodland Garden

Forested Flood Plain
     On one side of our house is a forested flood plain in which much wildlife passes through, eats, rests, and plays.  We regularly see deer, foxes, squirrels, chipmunks, field mice.  Our property goes several yards into these woods.  Years ago I planted a garden at the edge of these woods which I call the woodland garden.  When we moved back into this house last winter, I was amazed that most of what was planted was still there although neglected and covered with leaves, tree branches and debris.  Here are some photos of what is there.

     Years ago I planted about 10 hellebores, and now there is a large stand of them next to the fence that runs along the side of the yard.  There are some white and some pink-flowered ones, but the white ones far outnumber the pink-flowered ones.

Ligularia "rocket"

     Behind the stand of hellebores are about five Ligularia "rocket" plants.  Their leaves are striking and provide interest, and stalks of yellow flowers rise up to four feet tall in midsummer.  I am anxious to see if they still flower.


     One of the groundcovers that was planted at the edge of the woods was ajuga.  Some of it has spread into the woods.  These were uncovered after removing lots of leaves and debris this spring.

Vinca minor

     Another groundcover that was planted years ago was vinca minor which has pretty blue flowers in the spring.  This was originally planted around a tree and it has spread into the woods.

Lily of the Valley

     A gardening friend gave me some lily of the valley plants years ago, and they have spread around the tree which sits just at the edge of the woods.

Summersweet shrubs
      On the side of the house next to the woods, we have a small amount of yard.  There were bushes here before, but the previous owners took them all out and did not plant anything here.  I planted five Summersweet (Clethra alnifolia) bushes.  There are two Summersweet "Hummingbird" bushes near the deck railing which produce white flowers in late summer.  The three shrubs in front are Summersweet "Ruby Spice" which have rosy pink flowers.  The flowers have a wonderful fragrance, hence the name, and in the fall the leaves turn a striking yellow.  They do well in sun to part sun and are generally pest and disease free.

     This will be the last blog for a few weeks as our family is taking a much needed vacation.


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