This country garden surrounding a summer outdoor shed is lush, colourful and abundant thanks to a few secrets! Here’s how to give your shed a quaint look, filled with blooming flowers and plants!
Plant names: Lamb’s Ear (far left), Sedum (pink), Geraniums (red), Lobularia (white), Hakone (grass), grapes (roof), fern.
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Happy late summer! It’s that fabulous time of year where blooming flowers and foliage are at their prime! The bees and the butterflies are in their glory enjoying the scent and nectar of the blossoms from each precious stem.
And while I didn’t add much in the way of new flowerbeds this past summer, (but we did add THIS fun hot tub zone!) one area of the yard rarely fails, and that’s around the garden shed, which happens to be thriving!
The garden shed
Welcome to my little garden shed out back as it stands today.
The rustic outdoor shed is tucked in the corner of the back yard, making it an epic focal point where a rambling grapevine, blooming flowers, shrubs and different types of plants meet! It’s my favorite little spot in the yard where anything planted always turns out so good!
I think most of us know that gardening is a whole lot of trial and error though. And of course, the longer a plant or flower is established, the more drought-tolerant and lush it gets which is always a welcome sight!
However I do find how we care for plants and flowers is a direct result on how most will perform and grow over the course of the summer.
As luck would have it, the shed area garden is always really low maintenance. We even had a particularly hot summer with very little rain! So I’m actually amazed the garden beds have grown as well as they have.
However I attribute the garden’s midsummer success to a few combined reasons that seem to help this focal point of the garden thrive every year.
Love a slightly overgrown lush garden look too and wish you could add it to your own shed or garden spaces?
You absolutely can! And I’m going to share exactly what I do to get this look.
Here’s 10 tips on how to get the look!
Blooming flowers surrounding a quaint outdoor shed. How to get the look!
Above plant names: geraniums (red), ivy, lobularia (white), grapes (roof)
To start, adding flowers that bloom all summer, down to vines that not only provide privacy but also produce fruit are a few key elements to making this look work! For reference, here’s the flower and plant names seen in these photos:
Geraniums – red
- These bloom all summer, especially if you give them a boost of Miracle Grow now and then!
- Deadheading geraniums is key to keeping them in blooming.
- Easy keepers – they did especially well in partial shade.
- A vine that has weathered through winter.
- Can be trained to trail over window box planters or up structures.
- Keep the soil moist, and it will continue to thrive.
Lobularia – tiny white flowers
- The tiny white flowers are very fragrant.
- Great fillers and spillovers for window box planters.
- Look for a trailing lobularia to get this look.
Sedum – pink flowers
- This hardy perennial loves partial shade and plenty of water, but will keep performing.
- If flowers are pinched, the bush will fatten up.
- Easy to separate and move around to create more.
- Flowers pink in late summer / early fall.
Hakone – lime green grass
- I’m not certain this is the correct name of this grass.
- Fills in in spring, gets cut back to soil in winter.
- Starts to get seedy looking sprouts in fall.
- Gorgeous lime green grass that pops in colour!
- Challenging to separate.
Lamb’s Ears – soft green, planted in ground
- Green velvet textured foliage.
- Blooms pink flowers in mid – late summer.
- Spreading out and regrowing is easy.
- Did well in drought conditions, but thrived in partial shade.
- This is a lacy finer fern that was gifted to me by a neighbour.
- Thrives in partial shade best.
- Loves frequent watering.
- Sweet inside with slightly sour skin.
- Develops seeds in fall.
- Grows effortlessly! I never water nor feed.
- Vines require constant pruning.
- Easy to train and trail up structures.
So let’s dive in on how to pull this look together!
1. Add reclaimed elements to your garden shed.
Reclaimed wood adds a casual warmth that can only come from the real deal. I liken it to buying brand new reproduction home decor vs. an antique. Something worn and weathered always seems to tell a deeper story, adding instant charm to wherever you use it!
My own backyard shed started as a greenhouse with ripped plastic. The exterior was then covered with reclaimed wood which I enjoyed for many years!
Then the shed rotted several years later, in which I saved it yet again, with all new reclaimed wood, but this time, building it even better since my building skills improved, plus weatherproofing it this time!
The final results now are a weather-roofed shed faced with charming reclaimed wood in shingles and old fence planks!
But even if your own shed is not built in reclaimed wood like mine, here’s several ways to enhance your shed using wood:
Easy wood projects to copy:
Replace a newer door with an antique door or build your own barn door from reclaimed wood like I did HERE.
Build easy reclaimed wood window boxes like THESE for even more flower growing opportunities!
2. Start with prime potting soil. Everywhere.
Planting is one thing, but I think what you plant IN will make or break the success of your blooming flowers.
For the window box planters, some of last year’s soil to remains, however I ensured the new improved and fertilized soil is placed in the prime root growing areas so they reap all the benefits.
I find if you start with a good, fertile, well-draining soil, not only will your plants or blooming flowers thrive, they will also be MUCH less upkeep since they will be healthier from the get-go.
Isn’t that white lobularia fantastic though? It’s a flower that’s bloomed all summer and is such an easy keeper! I believe this is a trailing variety.
The lamb’s ear is the plant in the corner of the shed. This mound was started new this summer and spread rapidly.
I also add fresh potting soil to the surrounding ground-planted flowers.
While you can add separate components to the original soil like peat moss, mulch and fertilizer, I find a potting container mix contains everything your plants need in regards to constant food and water retention. It’s like using a premixed recipe that doesn’t ever fail.
(the above ivy was wintered over from last summer and is currently still growing)
3. Plant perennials first.
I happen to be in zone 8, located in Chilliwack, BC, Canada along the west coast. So there isn’t much that won’t grow in our mild temperatures.
However, adding perennials will give your flower beds a lush look you simply can’t accomplish with annuals alone unless you go to great expense each summer.
The perks of planting perennials:
- Perennials save money since they return every year.
- They grow larger and lusher than just annuals.
- You can separate them to get more plants out of them.
- Requires less upkeep and watering, especially if planted in the ground vs. pots.
Case in point! Last summer, this window box planter was filled with ivy. I decided to leave it all winter since it didn’t appear to die off.
I’m so glad I gave it another chance. Because not only didn’t the ivy die this summer, it continued to thrive, with it now starting to climb the window and the stump! What an unexpected perk!
And the ivy looked so smart teamed up with some vivid red geranium!
Perennial shopping tip: If you need a spot of colour somewhere, shop for a perennial that is currently in bloom to fill that spot.
(The rusty junk piece above was placed on top of the pink sedum flowers before they started to grow. Now the flowers grow right through it!)
That same story continues with perennials that surround the entire shed, including the grapevine that grows on top!
Perennials set the foundation to a lush, established look. Plus you’ll save a ton of money and less time with upkeep too!
(The stumps were a curbside find which make great planter risers)
4. Fill in with annuals.
There will always be spots situated around perennials that will be enhanced with a few annuals.
Such is the case with the window box planters. Spilling with ….. surrounding red geraniums, they really made a statement this summer!
There’s always a place to tuck an annual. So try different areas, such as hanging planters, window box planters, or tucked in between perennials right in the ground.
I find grouping annuals tightly together gives the most impact, even if you end up watering them a little more due to potential root bound conditions.
5. Shop your own yard for plants and flowers
This summer, I enlarged the flower bed a little (shown HERE), which led to an empty spot right at the corner of the shed.
After shopping the yard, I decided to transfer some lamb’s ears at the shed corner. Lots of new potting mix was placed in that spot first, then a few lamb’s ears were transferred over. And boy did they fill in quickly!
So I suggest before you head to the nursery, shop your own yard instead first and see what else you can do with what you have. The price sure is right!
Then hit the nursery for additional plants that will bloom when yours don’t. Or see if you can do a trade of plants with a neighbour, and you’ll both save some money!
Video – how to edge a flowerbed with a smart curve!
View the video above to see how to create a beautiful and easy edge to any flower bed with little effort!
… to now!
6. Keep the soil moist.
I think it goes without saying that a completely dried up flower bed will not thrive. But it’s actually quite surprising how quickly soil can dry out even if you think you just watered!
Personally, I think it comes down to how the flowers are planted.
I have ferns hanging against the house, but at times, I’ll even water them up to twice a day because root bound pots just require more water than plants growing in the ground under shade.
- hanging ferns – watered up to twice a day
- annuals in shade – watered every other day
- perennials in ground – watered once a week
- long established perennials – watered once a month to no water unless drought conditions persist
The key is to ensure the roots can reach moisture nearly all the time in some form. I’ve found my flowers and plants seem to thrive if the soil is always slightly moist and even better if they’re in partial shade.
And water reaches them more easily if you keep the soil around each one well aerated.
7. Feed regularly to keep their blooms in prime shape.
I have a confession. I’ve only fed my plants once this summer using Miracle Grow.
Noticing the geraniums were slowing down, I decided to give them a dose which did help!
However I think because of the fertile potting soil, the need to constantly feed just wasn’t there.
But I also know, if I fed the flowers more, they would be blooming more than they currently are!
Constantly feeding blooming flowers and plants does make an impact on continuous blooms. They key to doing it is having a watering can nearby so you’ll be better enticed! Ask me how I know.
8. Offer partial shade if possible.
My garden shed happens to be situated under a fairly large sumac shade tree. Would you believe it use to sit in full sun? I had no idea the tree would get this big, but it has simply by leaving it alone.
There was a time when I was tempted to remove the tree, because it was encroaching the neighbour’s yard too. However after we had a massive heat dome one summer, this tree single handedly saved us. The shade from a tree provided more comfort than my own house! So I resolved that the tree would stay and just get heavily pruned from time to time.
Leaving the tree up ended up being a massive perk where flower care came into play! The shed gets sunshine in the AM and PM, however the tree provides needed shade to blooming flowers and plants during the super hot afternoons, which really helps them to thrive during major heat spells.
Not only that, I am only needing to water every other day rather than daily, thanks to the shade!
So if you can, try incorporating a shady spot for some of your blooming flowers and plants. It’s less upkeep and it’s my bet, they will thrive like mine if you choose the correct types!
9. Use the shed as an arbour!
My shed did not start out with a grapevine growing all over it! In fact, the grapevine use to only grow along the fence along side the shed.
But at one point, I noticed it reaching the shed. So I carefully tied up a weak rambling branch to train it to grow along the roof gable.
Over the years, it continued to fill in.
And now here’s how the grapevines cover the entire shed roof if I don’t keep it trimmed! Egads!
So these days, I allow the grapevines to ramble, but snap them back just enough so I can see the details of the shed.
Allowing the grapevies to grow all over the roof became a natural arbour that didn’t cost a dollar more to build!
Plus, you end up with more grapes to harvest, so there’s that.
What’s really cool about those grapevines are they ways they change!
Early fall, the grapevine leaves turn a gorgeous shade of yellow and lime for a very short time!
Once winter hits with first frost or late winter has the grapevines take on a rustic twiggy-look which I equally love which lasts until next spring!
10. Change your garden shed decor with the seasons!
Furthermore, having a shed surrounded with blooming flowers makes for one very pretty focal point!
However, with each changing season, the shed gets a new look too!
Having a shed as a focal point gives you all kinds of reasons to just keep adding to it. So don’t forget to consider the shed long after the last flower has bloomed!
Get The Look! Blooming Flowers Surrounding A Summer Outdoor Shed. (With Images)
Plants to shop for shown in this guide:
- Red geraniums - for a pop of colour
- Ivy - may winter through
- Trailing Lobularia - good filler of tiny white fragrant flowers that spill over pot edges
- Sedum - fall blooming flower in a rusty red tone, easy keeper
- Hakone - bright lime toned grass (any grass plants are easy keepers and look lush!)
- Lamb's Ears - greyish green foliage with a velvet texture, produces pink flowers late summer
- Ferns - thrive in shade and moist soil
- Grapevines - large green leaves producing abundant fruit late summer / early fall. Leaves change to vivid tones of yellow and lime early fall, then fall, leaving a delightful branchy effect. Vines can be used to craft wreaths that can be kept forever. Fast growing, easy to train, provides privacy.
How to grow a country garden around your shed:
- Add some DIY projects to your shed using reclaimed wood. ie: window boxes, a pallet porch, shutters, barn door etc.
- Insert features such as window boxes, stumps, pots, etc.
- Cut out flower beds, and fill with fertile soil.
- Plant perennials first.
- Insert annuals for fill-ins or colour next.
- Keep soil moist and well fluffed so water doesn't repel soil.
- Feed plants and flowers once a week for thriving results.
- Divide current plants often to build your garden up!
- Shop for currently blooming perennials to fill in spots that need it.
- Deadhead flowers and cut back dead growth regularly to keep flowers and plants thriving!
Other shed related posts:
All signs on the shed are made by stencils from Funky Junk’s Old Sign Stencils HERE