I love bulbs and have literally thousands of daffodils, tulips, wood hyacinths, miniature irises and crocus. The problem is what to do with all that real estate when the bulbs are done and the whole summer stretches in front of you.
Gardening books advise overplanting with something else, but in my experience, the bulbs are not willing to give up their space until June and, even if I had the patience to wait until then to plant, I run the risk of digging into them.
My solution is to put plants in pots. For the area under my large oak, I have the pots in the small free spaces between the drifts of bulbs. They cohabit well and I don’t have to move anything.
But in the other garden areas, the blank spaces are ugly. Last year I found some little metal plant holders with feet only a couple of inches tall. I could put them down over the dyeing bulb tops and put the pots on top. In the fall, it was easy to tell which pots to move so the bulbs could come up next spring.
Sadly, this year I could not find anything like that in a price I was willing to pay. What I did find was plastic paper plate holders. They are not solid, but rather have a lattice structure in the center. As you can see in the picture above, they clearly identify this pot as one that will need to be moved in the fall. Not as classy as the metal holder, but they will do the job and there are now 6 of them placed around inside the garden spaces.
Another thing we discovered this spring was the eco friendly edging you see at the bottom of the picture above. It is made out of recycled tires and has a flat flange that comes out in the front to keep it from tipping forward and allowing you to run your lawn mower wheel over it if you have grass beside the garden.
It replaces the wooden edging you see below. This is what is left of hundreds of dollars worth of edging put in about 6 years ago. It appeared to be treated and I expected that it would hold up for 10 years or more.
Instead, it began to rot by the end of the first season. It became a magnet for termites and I sprayed repeatedly. I reported the problem to both Home Depot and Lowe’s, both of whom still carry the product. In my opinion, this is simply outrageous in an area like ours where termites are endemic.
The eco border is about the same price, comes in easy-to-handle sections and snaps together. Spikes can be hammered into the ground to hold the sections in place. Be sure there are no rocks where you will be hammering the spikes. It makes gentle curves but not sharp turns.
This large pot needs to be lifted over the bricks to stay by the porch steps for the summer. The potato vine is a favorite for pots as it trails down and has that bright chartreuse green.
This is just one of the six pots of Knock Out Roses that are arranged on the western drip line under the big oak. They cast enough shadow to protect the hosta. If they just had that wonderful rose smell, they would be perfect!