Is it not glorious in Edmonton in July?
Here's a few pictures from a July garden tour of gorgeous, peaceful, cool and shady backyard gardens in Edmonton. Thanks to the gardeners. Wow! Each garden was carefully designed to create a pleasant relaxing, sensual experience - an escape into nature within the city. Meandering paths lead to small seating areas or viewpoints, each with a unique vista. Even a small backyard garden can have many focal points that come into sight only as one travels through the garden. Include a table for eating and larger group gatherings, a bench tucked away for quiet contemplation, a fountain to enhance relaxation, a bird bath or pond to attract wildlife and plantings of differing heights to create a feeling of serenity and seclusion.
I have added a few suggestions from my own gardening experiences for plants that thrive in shade in northern Alberta.
|Hostas and wheel rim garden art - tucked away for discovery.|
Hostas do well in shade in Edmonton. There are so many hardy varieties of these leafy perennials, too. Come springtime, they are not early risers, you have to wait for them, but once grown, hostas are beautiful. Every few years they can be lifted in late summer, divided with a swift thrust from a sharp shovel, and replanted. Plant them in the ground - they do not overwinter in containers very well in our cold climate. They don't do thrive in hard clay soils either, so amend hard soils with leaves and compost.
A favourite shade flower of mine is the annual impatients. They are super sensitive to frost, so only put them outdoors late in May. They die early in September too, but they are so softly colourful - a treat for the eye in the shady garden. I grow them from seed, (start in late February - under lights). They are easily propagated from cuttings placed in water. Once the roots have grown, plant them into potting mix to further root and then plant into the garden. Impatients require a loose, light soil and a steady supply of water - they like moist organic soil. I grow them in pots.
|Bright begonias draw the eye. Create pockets of attractive beauty throughout the garden.|
|Concrete bench and urns suggest permanency. Stop, enjoy and be well amidst the soothing greenery.|
|White wrought iron and wooden table for a pleasant, private visit.|
|A pretty picture of rustic flower pots on big posts. Different height levels for interest.|
|Simple tranquility. This is enough to enhance calm contemplation.|
|A waterfall to the pond from a raised bed against the fence.|
|Cedars in big pots for privacy and cooling greenery. Candle lamps to enjoy the garden after dark on a wooden bridge over the pond.|
Check out my video on how to grow great garlic in a northern climate.