A Breakthrough Session With Dr. Hortfreud: New Garden Beds

Are you ready, Carol?

Ready for what, Dr. Hortfreud?

Ready to make the biggest change of all in your garden. Look at the size of those new beds.

Those are big, aren’t they, Dr. Hortfreud? The garden designer laid them out on Monday and then I “short cut” them so I could see them better.

For the record, Carol, I do approve of the new garden beds but wonder what has happened to cause you to finally do this. You’ve wanted to do this for so long, we’ve talked about it for so long, that I wondered would you ever really do it.

So you don’t approve, Dr. Hortfreud?

No, I approve. It is very well-plotted. But it really isn't my job to approve or disapprove, Carol. I’m your therapist. My job, as we’ve discussed, is to just help you look at all the alternatives, to work through your issues, and help you find answers that you already have. With these new beds, I feel like we’ve made a breakthrough, finally, and a very significant one at that.

I feel good about this, too, Dr. H. These garden beds are so big that I think I’m going to have to give each of them a name, which also helps increase their placeness factor.

Good idea, Carol. We can continue our therapy sessions because I know it will take some intense therapy to work out the names of the gardens, and of course choose plants to put in them.

Well, the garden designer has a lot of good ideas on the plants. Plus, I’ve let her know that she just needs to help place the big plants, the ones that will help define each garden, and then I’ll fill in the rest and that will make it very hortiful for me.

And planting it with plants of your choosing will also add to the gardimacy of your gardens.  I’ll put you down for more appointments, as I’m sure you’ll need them for choosing “the rest of the plants”.

Thank you, Dr. Hortfreud. I appreciate it. Oh, before I leave, here are some “before” pictures, too, for my files. The new beds are where I cut the lawn really short. I did that so I could see them better.

New bed by Viburnums.
I think this will be shady enough in spots that I can finally buy some shade-loving perennials again and not just look at them in the garden centers.

New bed around Locust tree
The new bed makes that small existing bed look even smaller.

New garden bed along east side of the backyard, by the fence.
So big it will have a path through the middle of it, for wanderability, leading to a place where I can sit and rest and view the rest of the gardens and continue my therapy sessions with Dr. Hortfreud.


  1. I can see that this is going to be exciting. More space to plant. Less to mow. You might have to talk to the good DR about that.

  2. I would like to imagine your garden after one year. I am sure you will have lots of shade lovers!

  3. Wow, you've got a LOT of space for new plants! You and I are both going to be busy gardeners over the next year or so!

  4. Hi Carol, I'm watching your new garden plans with great excitement. I've just started my own garden on a large empty property and you're really inspiring me to go big with my flower beds. Thanks for sharing. Marguerite @ CanoeCorner

  5. I don't believe that big is always better, but in the case of gardens, it definitely is. Wow, you're going to have fun choosing and planting all the new plants for these new areas! I don't think you're going to have much time--or need--for sessions with Dr. Hortfreud:)

  6. You will certainly need to purchase more than one of each plant. There will be need to be big groupings of some plants. And I think your sessions with Dr. Hortfreud are going to be shorter, as there will be quite a bit less lawn to mow.

  7. WOW!!! those are some king sized beds!!

    i cannot wait to see the final result (is there ever really a final results in gardening...), keep us updated on the progress!


  8. Big change, yes. They are going to look spectacular when completed.

  9. This is totally going to change the feeling in your garden and I know you will love it! I'm so excited in a 'playing along at home' kind of way.

  10. This is exciting, I can start to imagine how it will look with the new plantings. I like how generous the beds are.

  11. Looking forward to see how your new beds develop Carol. What fun!

  12. I need to book an appointment with Dr. Hortfreud. I think your ideas are going to be great. Keep us posted on the progress. Valerie

  13. How EXCITING! And thank you so much for satisfying our curiosity and letting us see a little bit of the new garden plan.

    I totally agree that each bed should have a name. I have found that to be an invaluable tool for me as I discuss things about the place with my husband, or when I blog about the garden.

    I can hardly wait to see the end result.

  14. Now that's what I'm talking about! When you said you'd posted some before pictures, I had to stifle a yawn. But since your before pics include short-grass layouts of your new beds, they really give a sense of the changes afoot in your garden. You're going to have so much fun with all that space. You can have "sweeps," like at the Lurie.

    But less grass to mow, significantly less. Are you really OK with that? ;-)

  15. I am going to have SO much fun watching this!


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