16 June 2012

Going Vertical

So many yards, especially within the larger metropolises, have very small yards in which to practice gardening expertise and to enjoy outdoor living.  So, how does one take advantage of what is available to them to incorporate a garden oasis on a small scale?

I was watching a re-run of CityLine today and was pleased to see a favourite gardener, Frank Ferragine (aka Frankie Flowers) doing a segment on this very topic.  From vines to trellises, arbors and pergolas, one can make a small space seem larger by taking advantage of the vertical elements.  Here are a couple of Frank's suggestions:

Left and right, is the tower garden as seen on CityLine. It is an ingenious design where you can plant herbs and lettuce or all ornamentals or a combination thereof.  As the plants grow, the tower is camouflaged.  A real space saver and clever design!

taken at Holes Greenhouses

Along a wall or garden fence, something like this, to the right, can be incorporated to give height and a lush feel to the garden/patio.  You may uses herbs, salad mixes, or ornamentals like grasses, and trailing plants.  Your imagination is the limit here.

This planter/trellis combination, left, would be perfect on a deck or patio for height and privacy.

Behind the fountain is my Jackmanii Clematis growing up the trellis attached to our deck.  In the background you can see three Brandon Cedars which are terrific in a sheltered site for offering year round greenery and height in the garden.

Don't forget to plant trees, provided you have the room!  Trees of varying heights add a vertical perspective and authenticity.  (Yes, this is a garden, no matter how small).  I prefer my garden to have varied levels.  Some tall trees, some mid-size trees and vines, shrubs and low-growing shrubs and perennials.  Doing this offers a more natural feel to the landscape while being pleasing to the eye.  If you look closely, you might see an obelisk, of which there are three in this spot.  I have used obelisks to train peas on, small vines, and now, just as ornaments in the garden.  They, too, offer vertical enhancement.

Vines, such as this bluebird clematis on my neighbour's fence, offer privacy and beauty.

To watch the video segment I enjoyed today, visit: http://www.citytv.com/cityline/garden/article/210151--maximizing-your-small-garden-space


Sheila said...

Hi Shirley - just seeing that fence makes me think what a great support it would be for green and yellow beans and both neighbours could enjoy fresh beans! There's some good ideas here today. I think the Edmonton Airport has a living wall of plants now though I haven't seen it.

Shirley said...

Yes, the Edmonton International Airport does have a vertical wall planted with a variety of plants. I haven't seen it in person yet, Sheila, but I did write a post about it not too long ago. http://shirley-agardenerslife.blogspot.ca/2012/06/edmonton-international-airport-wall.html

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