Site rain gardens wherever they fit best in your yard, as long as it’s at least 5 to 10 feet away from your home’s foundation. Ideally, try to locate it in a spot where it will collect rain water runoff from nearby hard surfaces, like the walkways surrounding this corner garden. Rain gardens work in sunny or shady spots, like this one. Shade-loving plants including Japanese blood grass, red-flowered crocosmia, the feathery blooms of red astilbe and green arrowhead plant adapt readily to the fluctuating moisture of a rain garden and ensure season-long interest.
Pamper yourself by transforming an outdoor space into a custom retreat. Japanese forest bathing research shows that time spent in the Great Outdoors brings significant health benefits—lower blood pressure, less stress, greater empathy. Green spaces soothe both body and brain, and you can reap the results with a spot in your own yard. Start your project by choosing an area with easy access. A small deck, porch, patio or corner of a garden provides a terrific foundation for a home-sweet-home getaway. Approach your project with an eye to design by including touches that speak to your style (retro? chic? urban?). You don’t have to spend big bucks to make it work. This welcoming retreat features a crate coffee table that blends beautifully with wooden chairs. Pots of colorful annuals bring nature near. Annuals include purple Angelonia with Raven (dark) sweet potato vine, Yellow Chiffon superbells, Royal Velvet supertunia, and ‘Banana Cream’ Shasta daisy with Vertigo purple fountain grass.