Creating a Garden

A blank canvas is daunting. What to create? How to begin? Equally daunting is an empty, flagstone patio that yearns to be a flourishing garden overflowing with plants.

When I downsized, my new home’s living room had tall windows with a glass door opening onto a patio surrounded by a five-foot wooden fence. Seven large forsythia bushes surrounded the flagstone. In the corner, an elegant kousa dogwood shaded most of the patio, and a blueberry bush was tucked under the bedroom window.

The gardens around my previous home were designed to share with my neighbors. My new garden would be very different — a secret, walled garden. No rabbits to eat the tulips. No deer to munch on everything! Since the house was an open plan, the garden would be visible from my kitchen, dining area, and living room. I would see it everyday during all four seasons.

I had been inspired by the lovely walled gardens on the island of Iona — each one had a unique gate. How wonderful that I had the chance to create my own walled garden. What would it be?