The smaller plants are often the last aspect of a “complete” garden to be installed.
There are many reasons why this happens:
In the photo above Ajuga (Carpet Bugle) is being planted as a groundcover in a 3 year old garden.
There are 2 issues in this particular example to take note of:
When this garden was initially installed, care was taken to grade the sloped earth down to the patio and remove any excess soil. The result was a uniform, controlled grade held neatly by the mulch and the patio’s edge.
The goal now in planting these new smaller plants, is to preserve that neat, finished grade and not mix soil with the mulch while digging.
First thing I do is arrange & set the plants (in their pots) where they are to go.
When setting plants on a slope use a trowel to make little divots to hold each plant in place.
Now the mulch is pulled away around each plant to expose the bare soil beneath.
**Note: Depending on the situation, you could first remove the mulch before setting the plants.
As each hole is being dug, the soil is not piled up on the sides of the holes, but removed and placed in a wheelbarrow.
The new plants are now set into each hole (without the pot of course).
In the wheelbarrow the removed soil is amended with some peat moss and Dry Roots granular organic fertilizer.
Now the Ajuga can be backfilled and planted with just enough of the amended soil to keep the surrounding grade as level as it was before.
Your ready to gently place the mulch back around each plant, water, and admire your work. 🙂
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Landscapes are complex, and shortcomings anywhere in the process can affect the project… and your peace of mind.
My approach is process-oriented. I break things down from planning to implementation — and make sure everyone is kept informed.
My goal is to alleviate concerns such as design decisions, costs, workmanship and material quality. I want folks to stress less and actually enjoy the process.
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