Landscape contractor Jenn Nawada helps a homeowner bring new life to her backyard guest entrance. Understanding that this space receives full sun, Jenn and the homeowner pick out some sun-loving plants that will bloom throughout the year. The two plant the new flowers, grasses, shrubs, and trees in the ground, and finish it up with a thick layer of mulch to transform the gateway.
Full-sun gardens can be light, fun, and have plenty of texture to offer throughout the year. But, they do take careful planning and plant choice considerations. When a homeowner decided to dress up her backyard gate with a full-sun garden, landscape contractor Jenn Nawada answered the call.
Full-Sun Garden Plants
Choosing the right plants for a full-sun garden is key. Sun-loving plants will thrive while those that are more sensitive to heat will suffer almost immediately. The following are some full-sun plants to consider in these spaces:
- Honorine Jobert windflowers
- Purple coneflowers
- Shasta daisies
- Big blue lilyturfs
- May night wood sage
- October daphne stonecrops
- Little Limelight hydrangeas
- Green Velvet boxwoods
- Maiden grasses
- Tupelo trees
Use these plants (and other full-sun varieties) to create gardens that bloom throughout the year and provide plenty of texture and movement in the garden.
How To Create a Full-Sun Garden
- Start by removing all of the grass in the new garden’s spot. Use a pick axe for tough ground, but a standard gardening hoe will work if the soil isn’t too dry and compacted. Rake up any loose grass or dirt clumps and load them into the wheelbarrow.
- Amend the soil by adding compost to the excavated soil. It’s typically cheapest to have it delivered by the truckload, and if this is possible, have the truck dump it right into the garden space. Spread it around with the spade shovel and mulch fork.
- While still in their containers, place the flowers, shrubs, grasses, and trees in the garden space. Arrange them in zig-zag patterns so they look natural, but be sure to anchor the fronts and back of the garden with larger plants.
- Remove the plants from their containers and tease the roots away from the potting soil. Plants them in holes are around twice as wide as the plants, but just deep enough so the top inch or so of the soil sticks out of the ground. Mix fertilizer into the soil as you plant.
- Fill the wheelbarrow with mulch and dump it in piles around the garden. Spread it out with the rake and shovel. Be sure to keep it from touching the new plants’ stems and leaves.
- Water the garden every day for two weeks, then switch to every other day for a few weeks. As the weather cools, switch to weekly watering.
Jenn helps a homeowner convert her side yard into a full sun garden. This side yard is the gated
entrance to the homeowners’ backyard, but the grass burns up in the summer because of full sun
exposure all day. Jenn installs full sun plants and shows how to care for them.
To remove the sod, Jenn and the homeowner each use a grub hoe. Once the sod is broken up, Jenn removes the sod from the area with a wheelbarrow. Next, they spread compost over the soil and use a digging fork to incorporate them together, turning the compost over and into the soil.
Once the garden soil was prepped, Jenn and the homeowner plant the plants by digging a hole as deep as the root and twice as wide. Then, add fertilizer to each hole. Then, they carefully remove the plant from its container, gently loosening the roots, and placing it in the hole, keeping the root ball slightly above or at ground level. Finally, they top it off with loose soil and water.