Now that the Autumn Equinox has passed and it’s absolutely, officially, positively autumn, it’s time to take stock of this summer, or this growing season in the garden, and decide what worked for you and what didn’t. If nothing at all worked and it’s time for a redesign, you know where to find me. (Hint – look at the top of the page ). If it was mostly a good year though, and you’re happy with things in general, now’s a good time to plan a few tweaks.
By now you can see who’s been overcrowded in the border and who’s getting too big for their boots. Every garden has it’s own soil and microclimate so it’s only natural that some plants will thrive in your particular conditions, which suit them perfectly, and others will get a bit overwhelmed. Many perennials can be divided successfully, leaving you with extra plants, to give away to friends if you like or re-home elsewhere in the garden, and if you do it now and move them to their new positions they should have a chance to settle in during autumn, ready to take off next year.
Don’t be afraid to look at the garden with a fresh pair of eyes, as if you were visiting it for the first time. It’s really easy to kind of not see things at all because they’re in front of you all the time. Is space being wasted? Are there trees or shrubs that aren’t pulling their weight? If something’s taking up a good bit of space, it should be doing something worthwhile to earn it’s keep, whether that’s attractive foliage, lovely flowers or fruit, or providing structure. If you don’t love it, take it out.
You don’t keep clothes that don’t fit you any more or shoes that have worn out, so think of garden plants in the same way. I heard somewhere that you’re not a real gardener until you’ve intentionally killed a plant. If that’s true, then my name is Anne and I’m a serial killer. In my garden, if you don’t earn your keep, you’re out on your ear. Actually you’re cut down, rooted out and end up in pieces on the compost heap. Which is no bad thing, because everything on the compost heap is recycled into nutritious compost to feed the soil.
All this clearing out might leave you with some spaces, which means you get to go out and buy some lovely new plants, that you really like. It’s a hard life, isn’t it?
Anne Byrne Garden Design provides easy to follow Garden Plans that you can implement right away or in stages. Anne’s design flair and passion for plants brings a touch of magic to gardens of all sizes.
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