Yesterday I had about one hundred perennials delivered and got busy transforming scrubby patches of languishing grass into low-maintenance perennial beds. This is a project that I took on for my townhome association a number of years ago, replacing the grass in front of the shrubs plot-by-plot over the course of a few summers. Last summer was too cold and wet to do much, so I made up for it this summer by tearing up five new beds, as well as adding to some existing plots.
Here's a typical plot "before." You can see how wonderfully the grass is doing.
And here's the after–
In my opinion, the simple act of spreading a thick layer of fresh mulch improves the look about 100% right there.
Most of where I'm planting is in the shade, which makes it a challenge for someone like me who equates hosta with dullsville. This go around I used a lot of lady's mantle and hardy geranium. Lungwort is my new favorite here too. All three are tough plants that should do well in this urban garden. I also added a few anemone, which produce tall flowers (rare for a shade plant) as well as some columbine, which I'm hoping will spread by self-seeding. The grass is Hakonechloa All Gold (Japanese forest grass) which I've long admired in other yards. Fingers crossed it does well here.
This time around, I didn't do the planting myself, opting instead to have the landscapers we use do the digging. Took them an two hours to do what would have taken me all day (and then some) accomplish. The rest of the afternoon, I spent giving it all a good drink, five sprinklers going at once, much to the delight of the neighbor kids.