My sincerest and heartfelt gratitude to each one who comforted me with your kind and thoughtful words in my previous post. Losing a loved one this close to me is fortunately not an experience I've had to face in life until now. The grieving process is taking me a bit by surprise as I'm not typically tripped up by my emotions. As a logical and no-nonsense sort of girl, reason and pragmatism guide me in my daily life. Daddy wished for his family to rejoice and not be saddened as he passed over to the heavenly realm. I'm really doing my best to honor his wishes. But I have to admit, my heart is not cooperating fully.
The following photos were taken just prior to my leave of absence to be at my Father's bedside. I'm not feeling particularly creative and words are not coming to me easily but I thought I'd go ahead and share these updated views of the front garden renovation. Progression of this project and the backstory can be read here.
Removing the lawn in this area has been accomplished in stages. During the spring of this year the last remaining blades of grass were eliminated from the front garden. The view (above) from the driveway shows signs of newly planted ground covers filling in from summer's heat and humidity in full force. [The bare spot in the forefront is empty from the recently extracted beach sunflowers. It was beautiful during our dry spring but once the summer rains came the undergrowth turned black and wilted. It does better in a truly 'dry' situation.]
White 'mixed' cladiums are planted in clumping drifts along the front border between flax lily and xanadu. Well, I guess it used to be the front border when grassed edged along its perimeter; now it is sort of the 'middle' border among all the various ground covers.
Both sides of the driveway make up the front garden and only pinestraw pathways and plants fill up the spaces now that the grass is gone. (One clump of beach sunflower remains as the visual above indicates).
Agastache 'black adder' got a trim back after its spring bloom and now it's rebounded with another summer flush of purple spikes for the pollinators to enjoy. A wonderful light licorice scent is the bonus with this blooming perennial.
Morning shade makes this seating area a peaceful place for coffee and quiet before the bustle of the day begins.
In the very center, which is the newest planted area, I used very low-lying ground covers while medium-tall sizes were used along the entire perimeter ... except for the driveway side of course where the two openings to the pathway are accessed. I wanted the eye to graze over the middle out to the edges where the butterfly plants add color and the structural plants provide texture.
Interwoven drifts of varying ground covers that overlap in assymetrical forms keep it from being too predictable. My aim was to mimic the undergrowth of an oak hammock but in an acceptable residential environment sort of way.
The native Mimosa strigillosa or sensitive plant has turned out to be an excellent choice so far. Its airy and fern-like texture is perfect for the center area. [My 12yo grandson took the photo above].
White Wonder Caladiums have a low-lying habit and do well as a border species in sunny locations.
The front garden is a collage of Florida-Friendly combinations mixing in native plants for the maximum effect and least water usage.
Summer is in full swing and the caladiums are shining brightly through all the rain, dry periods, humidity and heat. I'm so pleased at how they fit in with naturalistic appeal I'm moving towards in the front garden.
Welcome to my Central Florida Garden Blog where we garden combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly plants, and tropicals.