Basic Plan for Succession
IN planning for succession of bloom in the garden, space and time are the important elements. Color, though it ultimately enters into the problem, is not a controlling factor. The location of various plants in relation to each other and the time when they bloom provide the key to a successful solution of the problem. We will defer the discussion of color, therefore, to a later chapter.
How large shall the garden be? Richardson Wright once wrote a delightful book on A Small House and a Large Garden, but with today’s costs and labor difficulties, the large garden is often too expensive and becomes a burden. The present-day tendency is toward smaller and simpler developments. The intensively landscaped estate with one or more intricate gardens is passing. The smaller garden related to the living portion of the house is now considered sufficient, but there is a growing demand that such a small garden be carefully planned for a satisfying succession of bloom.
In working out the design of beds, be certain that there is enough room to accommodate groups of plants for each flowering season. In no other way can you have adequate succession. Avoid intricate patterns with narrow beds and pathways, charming though these may be. You can develop better compositions with large beds surrounding a central or terminal focus. And what is of almost equal importance, these days, a simple pattern is easily maintained.
- Width for Low Upkeep – A wide well-planted border is a superb garden expression, completely satisfying for the entire season. Such borders provide space for larger plant groups, a more complete succession, greater variety in plants, and they also cut down maintenance.
- Edging Strip – Let the width of this strip be 12 to 15 inches. Use candytuft, Polemonium reptans, Scotch pinks, cushion asters, coralbells, hardy alyssum, and armeria.
- Background Strip – The rearmost strip, or if the bed is bordered on two sides by paths, the middle section, should properly contain the tallest plants, usually the late-blooming fall varieties.
- Sequence of Bloom – It requires self-controlled planning to achieve succession. So much depends on proper distribution of plant groups through the entire garden and avoidance of concentration in any one section for one time.
- Basic Plan for Succession – In working out the design of beds, be certain that there is enough room to accommodate groups of plants for each flowering season. In no other way can you have adequate succession.
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