When we first moved here, our backyard looked like this. That glaring white vinyl fence isn't exactly an eyesore but it could use some softening up and some color! And what's with that random tree?
After having a pool installed (you can read about that HERE), we had some palms planted and added lemon and lime trees. Things were definitely looking up but that fence was still glaring back at us! Our first attempt was a total failure. We bought some oleander's last summer (really too late in the season) since they were half price. They must have been diseased or something because they didn't grow, didn't bloom and eventually showed signs of impending death. We still wanted oleanders back there because they grow quickly and bloom all year long. Tip-not a good plant if you have pets as they are poisonous!
Before I go any further I have to make a confession. I do some gardening in the front flower beds and all the containers, but this part of the yard is solely my husbands deal. He did all the work and I just get to enjoy it. He ripped out all the diseased plants and decided to start from scratch. This time he prepped the soil and planted more oleanders in the early spring. He filled in with a few philodendron. Fine, but it needed more. First, he added 2 Chinese Fan Palms. Still not quite there. He added more palms and 2 more philodendrons. My advice is to buy plants a few at a time and whatever you do, don't add up how much you've spent!
About a million bags of mulch later, it looked pretty good. Remember, we are here in Florida where things grow like crazy! There is no need to go to the expense of larger plants because these will grow very quickly (especially if we can avoid a hard frost this winter). Now we needed color! We took a quick trip to Lowe's this morning and picked out a variety of perennials. Even though it's in the 90's today, my husband was up to the task and started planting as soon as we got home. In the bright mid-day sun! He recovered quickly enough to play a round of golf this afternoon.
We hadn't intended on being so butterfly friendly but it seemed as if every plant we picked out was going to be attractive to our winged friends. Sounds good to me! Lowe's had a special section dedicated to Florida friendly plants that can tolerate the full sun we get here. All of them just happened to attract butterflies.
This is just a few of the flowers we have planted in our yard. Hibiscus, penta (not a true perennial but will keep going if there's no frost), Mexican petunia and I'm not sure what the other purple one is. We spent under $45 and they should last for years (fingers crossed).
If all goes well, I will do a before and after next spring and you non-Floridians will be shocked to see how much everything has grown. Thanks to my husband's hard work in less than ideal conditions, we have a more pleasing view and a nice setting to observe the butterflies!
By the way, that random tree just didn't make the cut in our landscaping design (it did, however, get cut!).
I will be joining the following parties...
Overflowing with Creativity at It's Overflowing
Seasonal Sundays at The Tablescaper
Spotlight Saturday at Classy Clutter
Show and Tell Saturday at Be Different, Act Normal
Saturday 7 at Positively Splendid
Masterpiece Monday at Boogieboard Cottage
Sunday Showcase at Under the Table and Dreaming
Met Monday at Between Naps on the Porch
Nifty Thrift Tuesday at Coastal Charm
Your Cozy Home Party at Cozy Home Scenes
You're Gonna Love it Tuesday at Kathe with an E
Transformation Thursday at Shabby Creek Cottage
Before and After Party at Thrifty Decor Chick