Ecology + Design

Hillside Stabilization, Poolside & Pond-side Native Planting | New Canaan, CT

This project, dubbed ‘Farmhouse New Native’ is part of our 2019 Green Jay Landscape Design Design Highlights series (#4!).  Check back for a discussion of the rest of our favorite projects of 2019!

 We had the pleasure of returning to this New Canaan residence in 2019 for Phase Two of Landscape Design and Development.  In 2018, we completed Phase One: a stream construction project, water quality improvements on an existing fishpond, and a pollinator garden planting to compliment the new water feature.  Read all about Phase One on the blog.

Phase two of the project had several components.  The client has a gorgeous pool, framed by a 70+ year old cherry tree and a lovely part shade / part sun garden beneath it, complete with gravel walking paths. The garden at this point received yearly plantings of annuals and had a few exotic and rare perennials – the collection of Asiatic lilies is beautiful, and so fragrant! (Pollinators seem to enjoy them too!).  Just beyond the pool garden, the topography slopes down steeply; bare soil and invasives contributed to the slope eroding, and it was in dire need of stabilization.

We were hired to revamp the poolside garden with pollinator-attracting perennials that would complement the existing heritage perennials. Star players were Nepeta, Rudbeckia, Echinacea for sun to part sun, and native ferns for the shaded section. The slope was designed with a mix of native Viburnums – an incredible genus for lepidoptera and bird habitat and food — and taller native perennials like Heleopsis (False Sunflower).

The streamside slope, which we had planted Phase One of last year need some editing of plants that had become too happy, and filling-in with others. Gardening is a process and editing allows us more creative freedom with color, texture and overall aesthetic.  We offer a one-year guarantee on plants that are maintained properly.

The client’s daylilies, which we had repurposed in Phase One, had become too dominant, and some invasive vines found their way in.  We weeded and thinned the daylilies and replaced with some of our favorite plants for bees and butterflies:

  • Monarda (Bee Balm)
  • Echinacea (Coneflower)
  • Eupatorium (Joe Pye Weed)
  • Lobelia (Cardinal Flower)
  • Hypericum (St John’s Wort)

When we returned to have the property photographed in mid-summer, there was an insane amount of activity! I spotted four different types of butterflies, countless bees and moths…it was a pollinator mecca!

Plant it and they will come…!

Green Jay Landscape Design



Photos by PS Fotography




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