Friday, August 7, 2020

Garden Report: A New Found Bed is Planted

permaculture design planting a garden between 2 edges
A Found Garden Bed
Found garden beds are ones that are not in the original Backyard Project design. They appear in the areas between two edges. This found garden bed appeared between the pergola and the gravel bed garden's east wall. It is a bonus garden bed.perennial garden bed
It is a large bed now full of native plants and berry-producing shrubs.This leftover bit of ground was where the extra rock was dumped during the construction of the pergola.
The first task was to remove all of the weeds and debris.

The second task was to remove all of the rocks in the top few inches of soil.

 It was quite a haul from a bed only about two feet wide and 18 feet long.

Perlite volcanic rock for increased water holding and air permeability of soil'Perlite is a natural volcanic rock that pops like popcorn when blasted in a furnace. Each lightweight particle has a large irregular surface and contains many tiny closed air cells that improve the air-holding capabilities of the soil and increase the ability of water to drain through the soil.' A quote from the bag.
Perlite mixed with organic-rich top soilI added an equal amount of organic-rich topsoil and mixed the two together. With our heavy winter rains, the soil needs the help of Perlite to drain the water away otherwise the plants' roots would rot.
Perlite and organic-rich top soilI spread the mix on top of the coarse, stony soil in the bed.succulents, sedums, Pattern Language plant flowers near seatsIn making a decision about what to plant in this bed, I was guided by Christopher Alexander's 'A Pattern Language.' Pattern number 245, Raised Flowers. It is about using flowers to soften the edges of buildings, paths, and outdoor areas. 'Raise the flower beds so that people can ... sit by them.'  I didn't want the flowers to touch the benches because that is where people will sit and where artwork will be displayed. I needed plants that would thrive in a hot, south-facing bed of dry rocky soil. I settled on a bed of succulents and sedums. They would be a delightful surprise when noticed while sitting on the bench and their variety would beg to be examined more closely.With daughter Elizabeth, who is a succulent/tropical plant aficionado, we visited The Planted Farm  https://www.theplantedfarm.com/ in North Saanich and came home with the above selection of hardy outdoor plants. It was such fun going through Ryan and Brian's trays and trays of possible plants and making tough choices. succulents, sedumsI have been growing this collection from individual buds for nearly a year and they had proven hardy enough for our winter.

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