It happens every spring: as the weather warms and the largest floral display of the year begins in nature and in our gardens, we feel the great pull to be part of the exuberance.
Trips are made to the garden centers. Plants bought, singly or en masse. Plants are planted, or not. (How many plants do we still have in their pots from the Autumn flurry? Perhaps we even have some plants from last spring?) Perennials miss-planted are not terribly difficult to move next year. Trees and shrubs can be a greater challenge and can make for safety or logistics mistakes. How many of us have come across that shrub that blocks the sidewalk unless it is pruned constantly, or that healthy and gorgeous shade tree that needs to be cut down because it is threatening a structure? Some gardeners are blessed with an innate sense of design, and a happen-chance method of populating the garden turns out well. For the rest of us….
That is why, winter is such a great season to plan. We have time, yet, to consider what we are trying to acheive in our garden, where we might have gone wrong in the past or, if this is a new garden, what functions must the garden fulfill and, perhaps more importantly, what feeling do we want to evoke? Do we even know the architecture of our house in order to blend our garden with it? Do we know what plants will work, what our soil type is, how to have four-season interest? And what is interesting, anyway, besides flowers?
Hopefully, this has given you the inspiration and some thinking points to consider now, before the spring headiness takes over, and all you can do is buy and plant, or move things around randomly. I’ve been there, I know. It is far better to plan now in the cool headedness of winter.
If you need help with all of this, go on to read here about a Winter Design Special I’m offering through Feb. 29, 2012.
Thanks for reading,