Proctor: Create a Mediterranean border

KUSA - If you have an unused expanse of pavement, don't put up with it. Plant it.

I got bored with my long gravel driveway--which I never used for cars--and decided to make something boring into something beautiful. It's all done with pots.

On this sunny, hot strip, I grow many plants associated with the Mediterranean region. These are sun lovers that thrive with minimal care except for watering and occasional fertilizing and deadheading. They are tropical plants, so they're saved from year to year, Some spend winters in a sunny window, while others that naturally go dormant are stored in a dark, cool basement room.

Plants that continue growing all year and need to be wintered by a window include fire bells (Tecoma), bougainvillea, geraniums, lantana, New Zealand flax, agapanthus, oleander and succulents. Many of my smaller potted cactus and succulents are wintered under lights in the basement.

Plants that go dormant after the first frost and are then cut back and stored in the basement include cannas, dahlias, pineapple lilies and calla lilies.

These are "one time only" purchases since they all will live for many years and some, especially the cannas and pineapple lilies, will multiply. Easy-care annuals that are also featured in the container groupings include angelonia, straw flowers, tall verbena, million bells, sweet alyssum, cleome, rudbeckia, sweet potato vine, plectranthus, blood leaf and begonias.

The focal point in this border is the bird bath. If you have one, make sure to clean it every few days. This helps to prevent mosquitoes hatching in it. Most bird baths are too deep. Place flat rocks at the bottom that birds can perch on safely.

(KUSA-TV © 2014 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)


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