homeowner, Rosi Zingales tends to a hydrangea bush
Photo: Wendell T. Webber
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After: Getting to Work

Between deluges, I got busy at home. There was no foundation planting at the rear of the house, just pea stones, so I planted mint, herbs, and lilacs. I reused the stones for various things, like making French drains for the downspouts. I love to garden, but I hadn't done it in years. I didn't have any kind of plan. It was strictly trial and error, though I unconsciously plant swaths of color. I started two beds in the front, but I still had chaos in the back.

I saved money by growing many plants from cuttings or seeds including the lacecap hydrangeas here, and sunflowers. Various annuals and perennials, including castor beans surround the pool as well. There are two large lacecap hydrangrea shrubs in front of the berms that run across the rear of the property. I've grown four hydrangea plants from the stems of the first plant.
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