Friday, September 4, 2015

The New Pond Gardens

Koi! Love these colorful fish!
There are several areas of the new property I am trying to landscape. The koi pond is one of them and is in a very important spot visible from the house so its landscaping is vital to our enjoyment. It has been a slow and painful process but it is coming along.


I choose predominantly pink plants for this garden. The Pink Drift roses that circle the far edge of the pond carry the theme the best but we also have: Joe Pye weed, Pink Gaura, Pink Maltese Cross, Surprise lilies, old fashioned bleeding hearts, and Queen of the Prairie. I also added in texture plants to include amsonia and a weeping Japanese maple.  For accent we have white lilies, Japanese roof irises, penstemon, and bergenias. Now that this area is mulched and weeded the plants are beginning to take hold and show off a bit.
Inside of the pond itself I have dark purple water irises, white hardy water lilies, and pickerel weed.
The fish are quite happy and of the original nine I moved from my old pond I was gifted with eight beautiful baby koi who are growing large quickly.
I mulched this large bed with cardboard and straw. The ragweed was taller than me in this bed and something had to be done. While the mulch won't last forever it is a start, and as time goes by weeds will become less of a problem. Especially once the shade trees begin growing. The yellow one pictured is 'Sango Kaku'. I have two in the backyard and think they are one of the prettiest Japanese maples around. Their fall color is a clear yellow that glows. Right now the trees are under stress since they are fairly newly planted and since it has been hot and dry lately. 

The irises under the tree in the foreground are Japanese roof irises. These are by far my favorite irises because they look great all season long, can be grown in the shade or sun (they would appreciate a little shade so don't plant them in a western or southern exposure, here they are planted on the east side of my home), and happily multiply into larger clumps (they will self seed too).

The back side of the pond slopes down with some of the famous rolling hill topography Tennessee is known for. Landscaping that side is a challenge because you don't want to block the lower plants yet you must have them tiered so they all layer well together. For instance; the Pink Drift roses are a bit shorter than the pink gaura which is just behind the roses. As we go down the slope the plants will have to get taller. There are three mophead type hydrangeas planted just below the gaura along with some amsonias and a Japanese style boxwood. Joe Pye weed also helps with the tiered effect. Hopefully when it is all grown in the appearance should be pleasant from both sides of the garden but honestly, the side I look at the most is across the pond to the roses so it is my main concern.

 One last photo of the back side of the garden. For me color is secondary to texture and heights when I plan out a garden. I want the plants to complement each other and set off one another whether they are blooming or not. Here the gaura and roses work out so well. The little shrub in the foreground is a 'Lady in Red' hydrangea my friend Angie gave me this spring. It is doing awesomely and I hope it, along with the other two hydrangeas in the bed, will fill in nicely as time goes on....

in the garden....
Words and Photos Property of In the Garden Blog Team, In the Garden


  1. What a lovely pond and garden area! I love the pink guara with the roses. I love guara but have not had success with growing them. Have had the white, never seen the pink before and I love it.

    Enjoy all that beauty surrounding you ~ FlowerLady

  2. The fish multiplying and growing say that your pond is a success. I like the idea of a pink garden. I am surprised that berginia grows well in this location. I haven't been able to grow them and I always attribute it to no watering system and the climate so hot and dry during summer. Makes me wonder now because I know your area is often hot longer and possibly dryer. Do you have a watering system in place here?

    1. Good morning Lisa! Yes, we are a bit drier and hotter here for sure. I actually bought this bergenia at Hilltop Nursery in Evansville about eight years ago. It has grown and I was able to divide it when I moved it to an eastern exposure in these gardens. I do not water it at all. It is pretty tough and I like it a lot. It has not bloomed since the first year I planted it. That is a downside to perhaps the heat. But I still hold out hope it will. Not too many folks grow it here as far as I can tell because I've not seen it in any of my friends gardens. It is under that little Sango Kaku Japanese maple which will give it some shade with time. So far this year the weeds shaded it a bit but I've found it does well with sun down here.

  3. What a beautiful pond & PLAN! I look forward to watching the plants mature. You have such a good eye and green thumb :)

  4. I too will enjoy watching the plants grow.

  5. Every time I see these posts of your garden, Tina, I am so impressed at all you have accomplished in such a short amount of time. This pond garden looks beautiful! Your gaura looks so lovely; I haven't had much luck with it here, so this year I planted one in a container, but once the heat arrived, it wimped out.

  6. Very nice. I enjoyed and loved my koi. Unfortunately so did the raccoons from the woods...:(

  7. Your ponds are great. Looking good and I'm glad the fish are happy there too.