My shade garden, used to be anyway
Half of my garden was designed for light/dappled shade with morning sun, and the other half gets sun through 1 p.m. and late afternoon sun, enough to grow roses. I really liked the way the Francis Williams hostas came up at the shady end in a big round like a shrub and filled in that space, I was not quite through refining, always feeling it was a work in progress, but recent property line changes have resulted in burning my Francis Williams.
This picture is showing the sun streaming in after the trees went down, but before the fence. I will post that in another post.
Recently, in the past two years I have been overwhelmed with changes on the next property over, first a lot of trees went out and a landscaper came in and did a nice job, but then that owner left mid way, and the newest owners have put up fence along my yard, where the lady who left was contemplating a row of arborvitae for screening.
I was waiting on the arborviate screening so I have added nothing in the meantime, and since the trees went down, the hosta burns every afternoon, even with the six foot fence. The space along the fence can be planted by me, even planted with arborvitae, they were going to be the Dark (Nigra) Green. So, I planted one, but I have found that it might not get enough sun there for it to perform. The top of it gets sun, and looks nice but the bottom has defoliated.
The problem space is three 8 ft. fence panels wide (24 feet.) Above the fence and in a shaft of sunlight to the back 1/4 of the garden there is intensive afternoon sun all afternoon long, especially from 1:30 to 6 p.m. I used to have dappled sun, and would face my chair in that direction for drinking beverages and reading, but now we have to keep moving our chairs.
Along the fence I have dug out the roots of the old trees and made a four foot wide bed to start, the fence is at least 1 foot from the property line, and does not follow a straight line. (There are no actual straight lines or perpendicular corners, this is new england.) I can plant in that 3 panel space to start with. Should I just cover it with arborvitae to start and then dig out and plant another row with other plants? Can I put a tree where there is only a guarantee of 4-6 hours of sun? How about any of these: dogwood or dogwood variety, redbud or pansy redbud? And where to place it in relation to the evil Norway Maple graciously shading our afternoons, and the white pine? There is about 10-12 feet from the garden bed to the fence, with a grass path, and it is a swale, and the beds seem raised, so I would have to enlarge the back bed for it.
How many feet away do you plant from a stockade fence?
So, would you put more Dark Green arborvitae, how many, two more be enough, they end up looking more like christmas trees; Would you dig out frances williams and what would i put there? Is there enough light for a quickfire hydrangea, they get big and round and there is a lot of space, but it would look like nothing in winter; I am feeling evergreen challenged but have hopes of more rhodies and more refining at the end of the summer. I can do about $200-$400 plants at a time, all my labor and maybe, except for a tree, they need to ride in my car. I am also considering a conical green boxwood shrub in the bed, next to where the frances williams are.