View Full Version : creating flower bed along a fence? Please help me
04-18-2005, 07:02 AM
Hi all you great gardeners...
A friend dug up a bunch of perennials for me to start at my new house. She said they are ones that "work just about anywhere". So I've decided to try them along our back fence. Right now there is fence and grass and very soggy soil from leaves being over it. The leaves are raked away, and I'd like to put the plants in. So, what do I do to prepare the area? I assume I need to dig up the area a bit before I put the flowers in. Do I need to add any sort of planting soils, etc to built it up a bit? This is my first shot at perennials....hope someone can get me started. Thanks!
04-18-2005, 07:27 AM
hi. i'm su re you'll get other more technical answers. but i'm just an untecnhical gardener! dig up the soil. maybe down 12 inches. the soil is probably already rich in minerals if there were dead/wet leaves on top. they'll decay and add back to soil. but, i would probably still get some all purpose manure (ask at your local gardening store) to mix into soil before planting. plant. water. voila! if it is hot/warm where you are you should probably water every other day to start. check the soil (stick your finger down -- very un technical!) to see how wet it is about an inch down. you'll know if you need to water that way. may i advise. come fall if y ou are still enamored with gardening. plant bulbs (available in gardening stores beginning sept/oct). they will bring you years of delight as they return each year with minimal gardening effort.
04-18-2005, 07:44 AM
I'd suggest calling your local utility companies to make sure no lines are buried by the fence. ;)
As Deb said, you'll probably need to amend the soil. If you have the time and feel so inclined, take a sample (about a cup or two) to a local greenhouse and see what they suggest - peat, compost, etc.
04-18-2005, 08:28 AM
I think the most important thing would be to make sure you get rid of every single piece of green anything in the patch where you will be planting- every scrap of grass, lesf, anything. This will save you hours of weeding later. You'll still need to weed, but not as much. Spreading some mulch around wouldn't hurt either. Have fun!
04-18-2005, 10:21 AM
Make sure the plants you are putting in are not going to get too big for the spot in a couple years, especially if you need to run a lawn mower past them. Also consider putting some sort of "edging" along the bed if it's bordered by grass. this will help prevent the grass from spreading into the bed.
04-18-2005, 10:42 AM
ACB - a few things to help out a fellow gardener. I work at a large nursery here on LI and these are the basics to help you out.
1. Find out light requirements for the plants you are planting (full sun/part sun/shade) - Does the spot you are planting them in match those requirements?
2. Get some manure - from the store or visit your local horse stable (free and better)
Get some peat moss -
Put a good three or four inches on top of the bed then turn it in to about the depth of your pitch fork or deeper.
It is OK (better) to have leaves in the soil.
Plants - how big does each plant get. Plant lower varieties in front or along the border and larger ones in the back.
Plant your plants then water with fertilizer water (Miracle Grow). Your plants roots are in shock and the fertilizer will help them recover faster.
Then - top with a good 1-2 inches of mulch (shredded cedar) from the store to save on your watering as much and to keep the weeds down.
But, do keep an eye on your new plants daily and make sure they stay a little damp to get new root growth started.
Lastly - ENJOY YOUR NEW GARDEN!!!!
Hope this helps.
04-18-2005, 12:56 PM
One more aesthetic tip - try to plant each species of perennial in groups of 3 or 5, rather than spreading them out. Your garden won't look so "busy" that way, and the view will be much more pleasing from a distance.
If the fence is wood, keep in mind that you don't want to change the soil level right against the fence unless you don't mind it rotting out on you. Grade it down towards the back -- it will also help drainage.
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