One of the "problems" or perhaps it's just a reality of the garden is that you can make all the lists you want of the things that need to be done, but little projects jump into your path all the time. The front corner of the house is one of those little projects. Last week we unexpectedly took down two trees - the dying oak in the front yard and an arbovitae that was too big for its location. Unfortunately, both were in the same corner of the yard, and the result of taking them out was to leave a big hole in the landscaping.
It will take a couple of years to replace the oak, altho there is already a group of dogwoods taking on that project. Replacing the arborvitea will be easier - and I mostly did it yesterday. It's rained all week, so when the sun peeked out after lunch I dashed outside and started digging holes. The result is that by dark I had replaced the tree with two holly bushes [Ilex crenata 'Helleri'], two nandina and an assortment of perennials. The hollies are a dwarf variety that is reported to grow 3 x 4 at maturity, with a pretty open and branching growth habit. I used it to continue the line of the existing hawthorns on around the corner to meet the existing nandinas on the side. Then I put two volunteer nandinas behind them on either side of the corner. They will fill in the upper level with fluffy growth - and quickly. At the very corner I planted a clematis [Marie Louise Jensen] with a wire trellis to help if get started up the corner post of the porch. It is a deep purple, so should be very pretty in a couple of summers.
The perennials are a variety of bellis [perennis 'Habanera'], salvia [nemorosa "Marcus"] and Forget-me-Not [Myosotis sylvatica 'Bobo Blue'] all of which grow 6-8 inches tall and a Bugloss [Anchusa capensis 'Blue Angel'] which will grow about 10 inches tall and help hide the old stump. Altogether I put in about 10 small plants which should fill the space by fall - if I keep them watered!
So now the corner looks much better - still way more open than originally, but by this time next year it should be nicely filled in.
3 days ago