I had a great time working with the folks at Iseli in the creation of their new display garden. It was quite a luxury to see a garden come together from 40,000 square feet of flat open space. But even though we had room to plant just about anything in our heart’s desire, we did try to limit ourselves during plant placement to allow for at least five years of growth.
That luxury was lost in my own garden years ago, but it hasn’t stopped me from adding great new conifers to my garden. I’ve always been more of a “find a place for the plant and move it later if needed” kind of gardener. Over the years I’ve designed several gardens for people that wanted a plan they could follow. I even tried that a few times in my own gardens, but once I get out and begin the planting process, I’ll change my mind and things go where it feels right at the time. Now, years later, I have limited places that I can fit new plants.
Like this past weekend, my wife and I stopped at our local garden center to pick up a couple of pumpkins for carving – they always have the best products in town. We left with a cart full of new plants. Now, most of the little treasures we found are planned for a new container I’ll be planting this week, but we did come home with a couple things that we’ll need to find a home for in the garden. I chuckled to myself as I pulled out the end of season annuals in just the right spot for my new Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Baldwin Varigated.’ My wife didn’t mind at all when I pulled out a couple of other poorly performing plants for her new Rhus typhina (Staghorn Sumac) that she had been wanting for years (another great plant for fall color).
My point is simply that I prefer to allow my garden space to help me decide where to plant something new. After all, it’s not all that difficult to dig and move most conifers if needed. In fact, my neighbors first thought I was a little crazy spending so much time out in my garden moving things around. Now though, they are quite pleased when I dig a few nice things out of my garden and offer them the opportunity to plant them in theirs. It’s almost like my garden is expanding out into the neighborhood like an invasion of conifers.
I know I love it, and my neighbors seem to as well.