Parterre Garden in Ottawa

Garden Design

Today Bas Suharto is sharing a beautiful front garden with us.

I live in Ottawa, Ontario (Zone 5b), and today I’m sharing pictures of my front garden. It is a parterre garden, 25 feet by 18 feet, facing southwest.

front yard parterre gardenThe boxwood plants are the extra-hardy variety Buxus ‘Mont Bruno’ (Zones 4–9) from Quebec.

red barberryThe hedge to the left, facing the neighbor laneway, is red barberry (Berberis thunbergii, Zones 4–8).

sweet alyssumThis year the annuals are all in white. The plants facing the sidewalk are sweet alyssum (Lobularia maritima, annual).

view of garden from aboveThis is the view from my bedroom window, in a photo taken in summer 2021. The hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata, Zones 3–9) in the center was still in white, and in the geometrical shapes inside the parterre are wax leaf begonias (Begonia semperflorens, annual). The cone-shaped evergreens are Alberta dwarf spruce (Picea glauca ‘Conica’, Zones 3–6).

garden construction I built the garden in 2009. Right after the construction of the retaining wall was finished, I used my watering can to “draw” the design of the parterre on the soil, the wet soil marking where the hedges would go.

boxwoods and spruce were planted firstLater in 2009, this is how it looked when the boxwoods and spruce were first planted. It took a few years for everything to grow in and create a good shape.

kids love walking around the gardenThis is the look from the front door, in a photo taken by my friend in summer 2017. Kids love to walk around the garden.

the garden in autumn of 2019This picture was taken in the autumn of 2019. The canna lilies (Canna indica, Zones 8–10 or as tender bulbs) along the front house wall had grown very large, and the rose plants were not growing well because they didn’t get enough sun.

At the end of every autumn I planted myosotis or forget-me-not (Myosotis sylvatica, Zones 3–8, often grown as annuals) to have blue fine flowers in early spring.

Another view of the forget-me-not in spring.Another view of the forget-me-not in spring.

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