Hey Guys! We are loving the new fence! As our gardens begin to fill in we are more and more enamored with the way everything is coming together. The parking pad space is being used daily as a fully functioning kid zone – it’s been really great to have. That parking pad (turned place space) is going to stay as a kid zone for the next few years, it’s so important that the kids have a safe place to play. Eventually (a few years from now) I envision us turning the space into another patio area.
The play-space butts up against our flower gardens, which borders our fire pit area. Before we had the fence I rounded the garden in the yard as a way to envelop the fire pit space and nestle it into the corner of the yard. The gardens give the fire pit area a pretty backdrop and make it feel cozy and serene. Recently, we briefly considered removing this part of the garden and laying down sod so that the kids could run freely from the play zone to the yard, but later decided this flower bed was really important to this corner of the yard. It grounds the fire pit area, and we would really like to have it stay.
The problem is that the kids are running through garden, I mean why would they use the stone pathway right next to it? Not only that, that kid zone is kind of an eye sore. I’m glad the kids have a safe place to play and are enjoying their backyard, but us grown ups get to see all those brightly colored plastic toys whenever we try and relax. We need to make a natural screen that doesn’t enclose the space but still makes a pretty lush barrier between the two spaces. Eventually when the time comes to turn this parking pad into a patio the plantings will help to give a natural backdrop to the concrete and white siding that resides there now.
I’ve come up with a list of small bushes and trees that we are considering to fill in the space. My main concerns are finding a tree or bush that has pretty foliage or flowers, interesting shape, and fills the space without over-powering it. The top runners are the Japanese Maple (which I am concerned will get to big and won’t survive a Minnesota winter), the Pee Gee Hydrangea, and the Purple Leaf Sand Cherry. Please chime in if you have experience with any of these, or have suggestions of trees or bushes I may be forgetting. I’d be curious to hear how you’ve created natural zones in your own yard, or how any of the above bushes or trees have worked for you :)