This year’s big planting project is 90% done! I’m continuing my long term mission of replacing lawn with better things, such as bushes and perennials. Lawn is a pain to care for and boring to look at.

I was kind of planning to focus on section 4 this year, but it didn’t turn out that way. It was easier to continue in section 1 because I have a rough plan all ready in my head for it, whereas all I have for section 4 is a vague vision.

It’s taken almost all summer. The planting bed covers about 15-20 square meters. Preparing it involved cutting away about three tons of turf – literally. Then spreading about 1 cubic metre of mulch and manure on top, and mixing that with the clay soil to make it more plant-friendly. And finally another cubic metre of prime planting soil on top of that.

At first I was just going to replace the lawn under and between the dogwood bushes with better ground cover that would look more interesting and not need mowing. But when I was halfway through the digging, I realized that if I am going to put in all this work then I might as well get something more grand for it!

Today I took a trip to the garden centre at Ulriksdal and came back with the car packed full of plants. It was like a jungle in there. It was a good thing no kids came with me because on the way back there would have been no space for them in the car. And now they are in the ground! Now I just need to add some more ground cover plants between them and then I’ll be done with this bed for this season.

This bed is in deep shade. It’s situated along the west side of the house, and our cherry tree and the neighbours’ tall trees shade it in the afternoon and evening as well. Possibly the bottom end may get a tiny bit of sun now and again. I like shade plants: Hosta and Brunnera and Polygonatum and Bergenia and the hardier Geraniums. But I wanted some taller blooming plants as well, so I also put some Astilbe and even a few Aquilegias there. It remains to be seen whether they will survive or flower.

Frankly I’ll be happy with anything as long as it is not lawn and not obviously a weed. So if a few of the plants get pushed out by others, I don’t mind. And if the bushes smother some perennials, I won’t cry either.

Here’s what I have:

  • Aquilegia “William Guinness”
  • Astilbe, Japonica group “Ellie”
  • Astilbe “Purpurkerze”
  • Alchemilla mollis
  • Bergenia “Silberlicht”
  • Brunnera macrophylla “Jack Frost”
  • Carex morrowii “Ice Dance”
  • Geranium phaeum “Samobor”
  • Hosta “Albomarginata”
  • Hosta “Big daddy”
  • Hosta “Halcyon”
  • Lamprocapnos spectabilis “Alba”
  • Polygonatum