Designing my first garden: where to start?
I can't think of anywhere else I could go for better advice! I spent most of the last year over at the home forums, as we bought our house last year and it needed some TLC. This year, it's all about the yard! Here are the house stats:
-small, 1950 Cape Cod in a Boston suburb
-Light blue exterior with dark blue shutters
-House sits about 25 feet from the street with a multi-colored slate walkway that winds up from the driveway.
That is where the good part ends. The front of the house faces NW. The south and east sides are heavily shaded from trees, so I'm looking primarily to design the front and west sides of the house. I would prefer a perennial garden, something akin to the "3 season" garden where something is always blooming or has nice foliage.
The current plantings are a mish-mash of meatball-shaped evergreen bushes (the kind you see everywhere), one nice rhododenden, a very sad and leggy burning bush, and then some other random unidentifiable stuff. It's all planted in a straight line in front of the house.
Unless someone is feeling particularly creative, I am not necessarily looking for plant-by-plant suggestions (though that would be wonderful), but more of a place to start, a good book, a good website. Is there something obvious I am overlooking? I'd like to take the plantings up to the slate path. I love, in no particular order or knowledge of what to plant where: hydrangea, peonies, herbs, hostas, sunflowers, dahlias, freesia, echinacia, daisies, black eyed-susan, lilies (I have small yellow daylilies in large clumps as well, these are pretty), anything with nice foliage--flowering or not.
I know this is sort of an overarching post, so if there are threads that would be good feel free to point out! I do have a fairly basic knowledge of gardening and a "green thumb", I guess, so I am not starting from nothing at all. Mostly I just need help with what to put where!
Thanks so much.