Flower Bed Design Help Needed....pictures included

newoldhouserJune 21, 2011

Hello All,

I would welcome any design help y'all can give me. We have been in our new construction for two years now and are ready to do our first flower bed. This is a small space between two exterior backyard staircases. It is under my dining room windows. I eventually want a brick patio in the grassy spot at the bottm of the 2'nd set of stairs so that will border the flower bed and go up to the carport....let me know if I'm confusing you.

I'm new to all this and really am lacking any inspiration or ideas. I'm not sure if I should plant a small tree or do some sort of fountain or sugar pot in the middle. I don't really even know where or how to start.

Please Help :)


view from screened in porch


view from carport



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    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 8:41PM
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So true, Charles! There are so many options and I am terrible at making decisions. Thanks for your ideas. We do need an outdoor cooking space and hadn't thought about putting it there.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 2:03PM
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karinl(BC Z8)

Charles, you really need to stop flogging your own business interests when you post here. Your input is otherwise welcome, and I have to say often useful. Just do it without the link, please.

Newoldhouser, what you need to think about is how, if at all, you use the space, and what you want to be doing and looking at in the back yard. Likely you also need access to that little door, so just a flowerbed is likely not the best idea; in addition you might like to keep that area as free of critters and insects as possible. In addition, think about who you are as a gardener before you put in flower beds that need plant selection and maintenance.

Certainly in the back yard, foundation plantings are neither a must-have nor usually advisable. Often you want stuff close to the house that you want to have convenient, whether a compost bin or a cooking area. Think of winter as well as summer! If you like to sit outside, this is a convenient area if it is shaded... maybe you need a tree to shade it, something that requires thought.

That is an example of why small areas should never be planned in isolation; you have to consider the whole yard.

So for your and other posters' information, the most useful pictures are big-picture views taken from further away. Close up pictures of the dirt don't do much other than slow loading time.


    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 2:47PM
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catkim(San Diego 10/24)

As Karin suggests, step way back from the house and take a photo showing the house in its entirety.

A very common disorder among first-stage gardeners is myopia -- focusing only on what is right under your nose -- or more often, what is smack up against the house.

Chances are, the best location for your first flower bed is somewhere else, but no one can make an intelligent assessment or suggest good use for this space without a full view of your house and garden.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 3:51PM
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