Ah, Jan­u­ary. I have cre­ated a new folder in Pho­to­shop Bridge enti­tled Gar­den 2011. I have one sin­gle photo in it, but it’s an impor­tant one—a shot of where we’ll be cre­at­ing a wood­land garden.

Out of neces­sity came oppor­tu­nity. We had the local tree guys out to take down a large tulip tree that was in immi­nent dan­ger of falling onto the chicken coop and across the dri­ve­way. It was a tricky under­tak­ing because of its loca­tion. The older of the father/son pair is in his 60s, but you wouldn’t know it by the way he scam­pered up that tree. Start­ing at the top he sawed off limbs and then he topped it. I was in the house when the top 10 feet of the tree came down. There was a huge crash, which I would have been wor­ried about except I heard the two men erupt into whoops of glee. Isn’t it great to take joy in your work?

Any­way, the rest of the tree came down, as did another in the way. I will also have to move a lot of the hostas I planted there in the past two years since they will now likely scorch in the sun. I’m not show­ing you pho­tos of it all because the whole process made a humon­gous mess that I will have to deal with when the ther­mome­ter climbs above freezing.

While the tree guys were here they made me a good deal offer to clear some of the woods. I hopped on the chance to get this sec­tion of the woods cleared of under­brush and trash trees. It is the area near the house that we look on when we eat din­ner out­side in the sum­mer. With­out all the tan­gle of under­brush and trash trees, we’ll get a bet­ter view into the woods. We’ll also put in a path and a bench to over­look a ravine that you can’t see very well in the photo.

What­ever else goes in the wood­land gar­den, I am deter­mined that it will be low main­te­nance. We already have a healthy crop of moss. I like moss. Some of the hostas will also find a new home there. Then there will be bulbs. And a ham­mock. And my bot­tle tree.

So here you have it, the first view of the new wood­land garden.

Be Socia­ble, Share!

14 Responses to “Taming Nature: The Start of a Woodland Garden”

  1. Gail Says:

    Robin, How excit­ing! A new gar­den with a fairly clean slate…I can see you now, sway­ing in the ham­mock while the feath­ered girls and their pro­tec­tor are walk­ing about! gail

  2. Mr. McGregor's Daughter Says:

    You know I love wood­land gar­dens, so I’m going to be fol­low­ing your progress with great inter­est. I can’t rec­om­mend highly enough the native Hepat­i­cas, which are not ephemeral.
    .-= Mr. McGregor’s Daughter´s last blog ..Word­less Wednes­day– A Mid­win­ter Days Dream =-.

  3. Carol Says:

    Sounds like this is going to be a lovely gar­den spot. I look for­ward to see­ing more posts about it as spring arrives and you get started on it.
    .-= Carol´s last blog ..When a Gar­dener Plays Cards =-.

  4. Hydrangea Flower Arrangements Says:

    A wood­land gar­den! What a fan­tas­tic idea! I can see it already! It’s going to look like a bit of a fairytale!

  5. Marissa Says:

    I am so very happy that you have posted after such a long time! I’ve been check­ing back every week or so, hop­ing and prey­ing that you posted, only to see “Autumn Chick­ens with Sage” again. I’m excited to see your wood­land gar­den, which I bet will be as mys­ti­cal as it is beautiful!

  6. commonweeder Says:

    I haven’t taken a before pic­ture yet, but I should make up a folder too for the Wood­land Gar­den cum Wind­break that we are plan­ning. We have to plant trees, not take any down, but I’m also think­ing about some flow­ers that can go there too.
    .-= commonweeder´s last blog ..Ice Per­sists =-.

  7. Diana Says:

    What a lovely blank slate you have there. And grow­ing plans for its devel­op­ment. It all sounds fab­u­lous. But I have to say — the woods are beau­ti­ful by them­selves, as well.
    .-= Diana´s last blog ..Grow­ing good­ies in the gar­den =-.

  8. Layanee Says:

    You are such a tease. I love the sim­plic­ity of the woods as is and can only imag­ine how you will improve the view. Pos­si­bil­i­ties abound.

  9. Karen Says:

    Sounds like a great place for hostas. And lovely, it sounds lovely.
    .-= Karen´s last blog ..BBR Photo Shoot Reveals =-.

  10. Lynn Says:

    Hi Robin
    How good it is to find some­body else with a love of Moss; I’ve loved it since I was a kid.
    I look for­ward to read­ing about your Wood­land Gar­den as it grows…

  11. Phyllis Says:

    Hi Robin,

    I just found you via a search for gar­den blogs. I used to live in MD and still have fam­ily there (live in NC now).

    I have a few pet chick­ens and some other farm crit­ters. Love them all but loads of work.

    I’ll be back again.

  12. Karyl Says:

    Wood­land gar­dens are my favorite, and the pos­si­bil­i­ties end­less once you start look­ing into them. It will be stunning!

  13. Teresa Says:

    Look­ing for­ward to see­ing what you do with your wood­land gar­den, What a won­der­ful under­tak­ing and one that will be bet­ter every year.

  14. Ilona Says:

    I’m with Karyl-woodland is the favorite type of gar­den. Your plans sound beau­ti­ful, and make me wish I could plant some­thing like that. There is some­thing almost rev­er­en­tial about a gar­den in a dense stand of trees.

Garden and food writer Robin Ripley is co-author of Grocery Gardening. Her new book, Wisdom for Home Preservers, is now available from Taunton Press. Bumblebee is about her life in rural Maryland, her garden, cooking, dogs and pet chickens. She also blogs about food and chickens at Eggs & Chickens. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook. Thank you for visiting.


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