The Shady Side Garden - Remodeling Begins

I'm only a little of the way into a remodel of our side garden but I thought I'd show you what there is to see so far.  Our side garden connects the front yard (and arbor) to the back yard and was designed several years ago to eventually become a shady location for hydrangeas and hostas.  Since it takes time for trees to grow I had to wait on planting those hydrangeas and hostas until after the crape myrtles and redbuds grew large enough to create shade.  So I planted caryopteris.  Caryopteris is a great plant for sunny locations.  It's a perennial/shrub that blooms prolifically in the fall, usually around September here in TN.  My caryopteris plants have suffered this year though without enough light to grow well.  That was my signal.  It was time to redo the garden.

I spent some time over the last week removing the caryopteris.  I didn't replant them in another spot, I just cut them out.  They propagate very easily and I have a couple plants in other locations I can use for propagation.  I still have some clearing to do before I attempt mulching.  Wild strawberries and blackberries invaded the undergrowth and need removed.  Also there are some irises that need a much better home since they have way too much shade here now.

My biggest challenge will be keeping the deer away.  As a temporary solution I purchased some netting to cover the plants after I transplant them over.  I'll make up a deer repellent spray soon to ward off the deer. The problem with that is I have to reapply after rains.  It's just another one of those gardening challenges that we'll have to overcome!