This site is an archive of For the latest information about Susy and her adventrures, visit the Cultivate Simple site.
Thank you for all your support over the years!

The Tour: The Gardens

November 24th, 2012

One of the reasons we chose this property was because of the potential that it had as far as gardening was concerned. The gardens are off to a good start, I’ll definitely be expanding them every year.

We’ll start off with the foundation gardens around the house. I know there are poppies, goat’s beard, asters and a few other things growing here. The previous owner took some of the plants, which is fine with me. It will certainly be interesting to see what pops up next year.

In the front lawn, there are two ancient apple trees surrounded by a fairly lush lawn. No doubt all the chicken poo helps, since the chickens are very fond of scratching around under these trees.

There’s a small potager behind the house, it’s probably a 15 ft square. I’ll be expanding it a bit, building rock walls along the bottom edge to retain the soil, and giving it a formal feel with a four square plan.

There’s also a raised bed nested into the hillside in the back of the house. It’s above the small potager.

Up behind the garage, there’s a large main edible garden. It’s currently planted in cover crops and a few overwintering vegetables. I have big plans for this area next spring, hopefully I’ll be able to put those chickens to work tilling it up and getting rid of some of the grassy weeds.

There’s also an old fashioned out house, complete with bucket of ash sitting over a small hill across the driveway. I suppose this could come in handy should we have big garden parties some day.

There’s also a wood fired sauna sitting down below the house. We haven’t had time to fire it up yet, hopefully we will use it often this winter. It’s a sweet little building to be sure.

There are vast grassy areas around the house, they’ll be frost seeded with clovers and beneficial pasture plants in hopes that it will be well established for some hoofed friends someday. There’s also a large hillside in front of the house that’s completely cleared, we may terrace it and turn it into a permaculture garden. There’s no shortage of possibilities here at the new place, our only limitations will be time and money! It’s a good things we’re patient people.

What’s your favorite foundation garden plant?

Other Stops on the Tour:
The Driveway
The Tour: Chicken Coop

9 Comments to “The Tour: The Gardens”
  1. Maybelline on November 24, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    Flowering quince

    Reply to Maybelline's comment

  2. Canned Quilter on November 24, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    What a beautiful place and I love the rock walls!

    Reply to Canned Quilter's comment

  3. tj on November 24, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    …I already love your place. Your siding, the outbuildings, the woods, the outhouse and those big-a** stepping stones outside your door – wow! :o)

    …My fav’ foundation plantings are azaleas and boxwoods. Altho’ I do love the dwarf lilacs and yews of course. That’s a good question, one that is hard to narrow down as there are so many favorites.

    …Thank you for the tour!

    …Enjoy your day!

    …Blessings. :o)

    Reply to tj's comment

  4. Sierra N Hampl on November 24, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    It looks like you have a really wonderful piece of property! I look forward to seeing spring pictures as everything comes to life!

    Reply to Sierra N Hampl's comment

  5. Chris on November 24, 2012 at 10:03 pm

    Beautiful piece of property! Is that your barn? I love that the outhouse has a view!! :) I have too many favorite foundation plants to list, although the one I have now that we really like is Abelia…it’s semi evergreen, has the most beautiful, little, pink, blossoms that last from June till frost and the Bees and hummingbirds love it!!

    Reply to Chris's comment

  6. EL on November 24, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    I love your rocks. I mean, I am seriously envious. I don’t have a pick-up and therefore can’t get the large rocks that I’d like. Besides, yours look as though they’ve been in place for a long time.

    I don’t know that I think about foundation plants. This year I have natives in one area and tomatoes growing up a trellis on my house in another area (I guess I’m just a bit schizoid there.

    I do love my Maximillian sunflower, but I suspect that it isn’t a native in your area. It grows about 6 ft tall and has flowers that look a lot like black eyed susans. I use it next to my deck and fence for additional privacy. Joe Pye weed is another big one and I think it is a native back East. I also love Echinaceas.

    Reply to EL's comment

  7. sharon on November 24, 2012 at 11:10 pm

    I love your stone wall…Love this “before ” tour!!….a sauna how extravagant!…haha the outhouse a real conversation piece! You are really out in the wild

    Reply to sharon's comment

  8. Turling on November 26, 2012 at 11:03 am

    You didn’t buy a house, you bought a compound! Wow.

    It’s also still weird for me that your garden, in essence, dies during the winter. Being in California, that’s a strange concept. I don’t wait for anything to “pop up” in the spring, because it’s already there. HA!

    Reply to Turling's comment

  9. angie h on November 27, 2012 at 10:25 am

    I love the stone walls and stepping stones! In our back back yard you can probably find the remnants of an old outhouse! My grandparents didn’t get in door plumbing until about a year before I was born (1980)!!!

    I think the sauna will be a perfect end to a day spent prospecting when I visit!!

    Reply to angie h's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

Read previous post:
Book Review: The Small Scale Poultry Flock

If you don't listen to the podcast, you didn't hear my review of The Small-Scale Poultry Flock: An All-Natural Approach...