Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Sweeping Your Paths

 When I first started planting my borders I didn't really consider specific plants to "sweep" the pathways. I knew I wanted plants to brush by for scent or tactile experience. Simply put , touching the plants in my garden has always been a special experience to me. A kind of connection that I think most gardeners find pleasure in and maybe the plants do too ?

At the top of my sun strip , by the gate , you can just see the ferns start .. then the Freckles violet, Lady's Mantle , Sweet Woodruff, Ajuga and then repetitions of Lady's Mantle to overlapping spirea.
Always something touching the pathway. 
I love the look of the blue aguga and the white of the woodruff.
My first "sweeper" that made me pay attention was Lamb's Ears. Talk about a tough but incredibly soft "touching" plant. I do have to keep an eye on it. I don't let it go to flower because then the form gets too awkward and floppy .. so I trim it back to a little hedge of fuzzy fingers.

Ostrich ferns always amaze me .. they are the toughest plant I have and they are ones you also have to strong arm some times .. they out do themselves trying to take over the world but they are also very easy to pull out when you need to. They have a wonderful "greening" affect that I look for.
Even on raised beds I like to have spill over . This white moss phlox is a neutral plant against a lot of colour here.
Wood Phlox spills over for a while and then campanula starts to bloom when the phlox is finished.

Even my ally way have "spill" plants with oregano under the dwarf Burning Bush and campanula under the spirea/mini hosta planting .. amazingly they seem to get enough sun to thrive.
The oregano flowers are gorgeous sprays of white and the scent is fantastic. The campanula are little blue flowers, but ones that have to have a tough hand again because they believe in world domination. 
Eventually I will have lots of lavender spilling out from the sun strip as well and that is another heavenly scent to remember during our long cold winters , when you wonder, will it all come back again ?


Kris Peterson said...

I like to see the edges of my garden softened too but, given the major difference in our climates, the plants that spill over in my garden tend to be very different. Succulents are among my most common edging plants. We share a fondness for lamb's ear and lavender, though ;)

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I love the idea of fuzzy fingers. Made me smile.

Nadezda said...

Hello, Joy
your garden is wonderful. I love the composition of white and blue, lovely!
This spring I noticed that Lamb's Ears and moss phlox died and I was upset. I couldn't find seeds and grow them from seed. Love your ferns.

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Hi Kris, yes the huge difference in our grow zone really illustrates what plants we count on to do their thing for us .. lamb's ear is a remarkable tactile experience in the garden .. I love having it as an edging plant .. I have to wait a while for the lavender to produce flower wands but they bring such a wonderful element to the senses .. if I am not too lazy I collect the wands and dry them for that scent in the winter .. along with rosemary !

Lisa those fuzzy fingers make me laugh too .. I think they are grabbing me by the ankles at times .. now isn't that an experience ? LOL

Hello Nadezda and thank you ! I had a bad year with my lamb's ears and it was impossible to find anywhere for some reason .. but luckily some of the lamb's ear survived by their root system and it grew back .. I was so relieved because I really count on that edging.
So far the moss phlox is sticking .. I loved seeing it in Europe with so many vibrant colours spilling over stone walls and houses .. gardens there are gorgeous !

deb said...

Absolutely beautiful garden Joy filled with many of my favourite plants too.

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Hi deb and thank you so much ! .. I have so many favorite plants that they do indeed fill the garden to over flowing at times ;-)

Jason said...

Love the combination of sweet woodruff and ajuga. Sadly the rabbits eat my woodland phlox. your garden is wonderful.

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Thanks Jason .. I was happy the ajuga and woodruff "met" each other to make the combination .. serendipity ? LOL .. I have had a bunny in the garden a few weeks ago but thankfully no browsing so far .. sorry about your hungry bunnies ;-)

Beth at PlantPostings said...

Good point: Using all the senses, including touch, greatly increases the joy of the garden, doesn't it? Your blends and combinations of plants are lovely!

RobinL said...

I do love to see plants spill over the harsh edges, and soften the look. But it drives hubby crazy! He seems to think that gardens should be neat and orderly places, and I am constantly having to disavow him of this notion.

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Hi Beth, thank you ! A garden really should draw you in to not just seeing the beauty in the plants but your curiosity of how they smell and feel. It is such a retreat for me even though I work more than I take the time to enjoy it .. but the work to me is enjoyable and satisfying!

Hi Robin .. I was like your husband, always trying to keep plants in hand .. but the last few years is when it truly dawned on me that they were trying to tell me something. So I started "listening" maybe one day your husband will hear ? LOL

Snowbird said...

Oh, how lovely they all sit together, what a gorgeous haven, I just love all your

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Thanks Snowbird .. the garden is becoming a very mature lady like me ? LOL