Tuesday, March 15, 2011

New garden path

Over the last couple weeks I put in about 10 hours of work to build a little path from our back patio around the greenhouse to the gate on the side of the house.  The work mostly consisted of digging out the area for the bricks, dumping the dirt in various low areas of our yard, cleaning the bricks of mortar (since these are repurposed bricks) and then the fun part: laying the bricks.

Our new brick path, wrapping around the greenhouse.
I think the project turned out really nice.  This area is very shady as soon as our huge Sycamore tree leafs out, so the grass has been gone for years.  This path was laid just before the Spring rains come, so we'll be able to walk around the house without trudging into mud.

Our new brick path, leading to the side gate.
Building this path also gave us the opportunity to use some of our gardening budget and spiff up this part of our yard.  We purchased some little Pieris bushes (Pieris japonica 'Valley Rose') from Lowe's that have the 1 year warranty.  That way if they aren't able to handle the heat of our Oklahoma Summers, we can get our money back.  Lowe's often offers some things that I haven't seen before and I have to be a little skeptical.  Either they haven't been tested in our climate or they have and they're not going to make it.  I am kind of familiar with the name Pieris, though, and have read enough online now that I am fairly confident that these plants will be happy here.

Pieris japonica 'Valley Rose' and decorative hedgehog
The Pieris bushes have really nice, dusty rose colored blooms that droop like a fountain of little bells.  When the blooms have finished the foliage is still interesting, having a shape similar to a Schefflera.

I have wanted a Forsythia for a while, seeing them light up every Spring, and I know that it will do well in our climate.  Like our Quince, it won't require any special care and should establish itself well in this location.  Also, I know that the Blue Star Junipers will do well in our climate.  We have some nice Green Mound Junipers in our front yard around the waterfall that look great.  They have slowly spread over time and just look better every year.

Forsythia and Blue Star Juniper
We would like to lay some shade grass sod around our path and in the most barren part of our yard near our porch now.  It will look much nicer and keep our house cleaner from the pups' trips in and out this Spring.


  1. Gee, this looks SO GOOD! I cannot wait to see in person. Your plants you have added will really be an added attraction. There was a forsythia very close to the same location many moons ago, too, and it was beautiful every spring. Great job! (Nice modeling job, Pee-Wee)

  2. I didn't know you gardened...

  3. I've been going a bit nutso with Pieris japonica lately. I've fallen in love with the cultivars "mountain fire" and flaming silver. We're a bit too cold here to have the flowers reliably survive the winter but the new growth is a beautiful orange-red and lasts for almost a month. You'll have to let me know how yours do...maybe I'll finally have found a place on earth where Pieris can actually grow well.