Need suggestions for bed in front of fence

DCAndieMarch 31, 2013

I'm brand-new to gardening, and have found this web site to be a ton of help in the past few months! I recently purchased a home that had very little done in the way of landscaping. There is a wooden fence to the side of our property, with about 2 feet of flower bed in front of it, set back a few more feet from the sidewalk.

When we bought in August, it looked like it had absolutely nothing growing except for 2 green bushes on either side. To fix it up, I had the "great" idea to plant some lavender in the beds there, thinking it would be pretty and low-maintenance. Then, perhaps mistakenly, I also bought some red poppy seeds, thinking I could somehow intersperse them and give the whole area some much-needed color. However, now that spring has sprung, I see there are bulbs popping up in that area. I hesitate to just pull them all up to make way for my lavender seedlings, because I think (?) they are tulips and will probably look lovely when they bloom. However, I know that once they are done blooming, the area will go back to looking dead and empty throughout summer and fall. My question is -- what do "normal" gardeners do in this situation? Is planting the lavender around those bulbs possible, and then I can just uproot them after they wilt and replant the bulbs somewhere else in fall? Is the thought of doing lavender AND poppies in that small flower bed just an bad idea anyhow?

I know this is such a simple project, but I'm really at my wit's end trying to figure out what to do with that small space! Any suggestions would be so welcome...

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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

A picture would help, plus information on soil and light conditions - which direction does the bed face?

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 7:35PM
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catkim(San Diego 10/24)

Let it all grow and see what happens. Then if you don't like the results, adjust for next year. I think your lavender idea has merit, especially to help disguise the fading bulb leaves which must be allowed to dry in place in order to produce flowers next year. And poppies too, why not? Give it a chance, what have you got to lose?

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 10:28PM
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Sorry, I attached a photo and it showed on the preview, but somehow it didn't post. I'll try again.
* Flower bed faces west
* It seems to get a lot of sun
* I'm not sure about the soil conditions -- it doesn't appear to have much clay, compared to other parts of our yard. You can't see it in the photo, but it's actually located at the top of a slight incline, so it should have pretty good drainage, I think.

Catkim, would you suggest putting the lavender in the back of the bulbs? Interspersing the lavender and poppies, or doing one in front of the other? Does this sort of thing matter as far as how they will grow, or is it just coming down to personal preference? Thanks for the encouragement, I'll give it a shot.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 9:24PM
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Got it!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 9:33PM
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