Starting from scratch - need help with plant ideas

Emily626March 30, 2011

Hello,

DH and I built a new home about a year ago, and when our home was completed we got the "builder's package" landscaping. As you can imagine, the soil was not well prepared and the plants we had did not do well and some ended up dying. We live in an Indianapolis suburb and have very hard clay soil.

We have ripped everything out and we are starting from scratch. This weekend (if the weather cooperates) I am going to till the beds and add in compost and topsoil. Next weekend I am going to build up the beds with extra topsoil, the following weekend line the beds with cobbles, and then around the end of April I am going to start planting.

The problem is I have no idea what to plant. I do not have much of a "green thumb" and I am pretty new to landscaping and gardening in general. I am not looking for an elaborate garden, but I would like to have nice curb appeal.

The majority of the flower beds get morning sun and afternoon shade, and part of the beds rarely (if ever) get any sun.

I would like to have variations in color and height.

If you have any thoughts I would greatly appreciate it!

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
angel_z5

Consider some edible landscaping. It's nice to have a nice looking yard, and a good tasting one. LOL. Maybe some Gooseberry, strawberry, or Juneberry bush. Mint, and herbs. Just some thoughts.

FYI you are in Zone5.

Always an...Angel

    Bookmark   April 4, 2011 at 6:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Yardspace.org

I am gardening in the Midwest as well. Not everything sold to me has been successful, others have flourished. All my experiences are on www.yardpace.org
Stay away from anything that likes too much water, (expensive) and anything that requires acid soil e.g rhododendrons, azaleas.(too much hassle) Try to attract wildlife, butterflies etc. and fence up or the bunnies will eat your plants and thus your wallet.

Here is a link that might be useful: yardspace

    Bookmark   April 4, 2011 at 7:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
madisonkathy

Check out some "preplanned" gardens for ideas. Better Homes and Gardens web page has a ton of them for downloading. Bluestone Perennials also has some good ones.

Here is a link that might be useful: Gardening plans

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 10:09AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Columnar fastigiate screening tree recommendations
hello! I'm wondering if members have recommendations...
SchnooMom
Flowering Orchid
I have a house plant that my mother had started and...
junefarmgirl
Transplanting peonies, hydrangea now?
I would like to move some peonies and plant one hydrangea....
dan_in_winfield
does Southern IL belong here
Please Help me find a forum!
organic_gardenhag
WANTED: Chicago Area Exchange Meetup
I'm going to try to get everyone here to meet up and...
zubdog
Sponsored Products
Chain Reaction Giclee Glow 16" Wide Bronze Pendant
Lamps Plus
Peacock Outdoor Rug 5'3" x 7'7" - NATURAL/CHOCOLATE
$179.00 | Horchow
Deluxe Glass-top Computer Desk with File Drawer
Overstock.com
St. Martin Dining Arm Chair Cushions, Patio Furniture
$174.00 | FRONTGATE
Access Vision 9 1/2" Wide Brushed Steel LED Ceiling Light
Euro Style Lighting
Joy Carpets Splatter Paint Area Rug Multicolor - 1503-B
$152.00 | Hayneedle
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™