Ornamental grasses add year-round texture, movement and color to rain garden designs. Tufts of blue fescue bring a steely hue to this rain garden and blend beautifully with variegated green and gold sedges. A formal paver stone edging gives the garden a formal look that echoes brick raised beds by the house. Use river rock to complement a rain garden’s water-related theme.
If you cook at all, you’re probably familiar with the internal structures of an onion. Guess what? Onions are what’s known as true bulbs Tulips are also true bulbs. A true bulb has layers of fleshy tissue that act as the food storage organ. Roots form at the base of the bulb and serve to anchor the bulb in soil and absorb water and nutrients. When you buy bulbs, you’ll often see dried root remnants at the base of the bulb. Examples of true bulbs: onion, garlic, allium, daffodil, tulip, amaryllis, grape hyacinth, Dutch hyacinth, Dutch iris, scilla, lily.
What was once a slippery clay slope became a wonderful edible garden with the addition of terraced raised beds, steps and gravel treads. The gardens are only 4 feet wide, so they're easy to access from all sides.
Straw is a more utilitarian mulch typically used in vegetable gardens or strawberry patches. Straw is simply the stalks of grain plants. Ask your local straw supplier if their product is clean (doesn’t contain grain heads) and weed-free. Prevent weed seed issues by spreading three sheets of damp newspaper under straw. Some gardeners let straw bales sit a few weeks so weed or grain seeds germinate. This leads to moldy straw—plan to wear a dust mask if you have allergies. Expect to get one to two growing seasons out of straw, depending on how thickly you spread it.
When growing curbside edibles, raised beds can add fresh soil to avoid heavy metals or particulates that have deposited over many years but don’t dissipate. This hellstrip garden, featured in the book, "Hellstrip Gardening," is in Portland, Ore.
This home's property is large enough to include a chicken coop, raised garden beds for growing vegetables and a garden shed. Pea gravel walkways stand out handsomely against the wood trim, fence and shed.
An unused area in the yard was used to create a large raised bed garden. The grass in the area wasn't growing properly due to poor soil;, but it received sun all day. Varying heights were used to accommodate root systems of different kind of plants, and to create visual interest. The addition of string lights makes it a wonderful "room" in the evening for cocktails under the stars.