Although not commonly recommended as the best season to plant, establishing a border garden in late summer can be an advantageous time. While enjoying the outside environment, we have occasion to assess our property.
In the photos, you can see our client noticed he was looking at a stark fence instead of a border of interest. Rather than the customary wall of upright evergreens, which is uninteresting, we chose to utilize color and texture by establishing flowering shrubs, trees, and ornamental grasses.
Included in our design was the use of three Tuscarora Crape Myrtles, which bloom from July through September. Accompanying them are Hydrangea paniculate ‘Phantom’, Hibiscus syriacus (Rose of Sharon), Clethra alnifolia ‘Ruby Spice’ (Summersweet), and Panicum virgatum ‘Shenandoah’ (Switchgrass). All of these plants possess a long season of floral interest.
Summersweet is a native flowering shrub found throughout New Jersey. Of particular interest is its beautiful flower, which attracts hummingbirds. Switchgrass is a native prairie grass common throughout the Northeast. The variety ‘Shenandoah’ has burgundy red foliage. It is best to not cut back ornamental grasses until spring so the foliage can provide winter interest.
So, in these last days of summer, enjoy assessing your own yard.