Asymmetrical Parterre

I love parterre gardens. For anyone who doesn’t know, a parterre is a symmetrical garden on flat ground. The design is typically formal and ornate. Maybe French. Maybe Victorian.

My parterre started with a truck frame. I’m not sure where it came from, but it lay flat on the ground for years. Finally, Jim and I supported it upright so that it forms an archway for short people–we are short–with four openings.

And that’s why the garden is asymmetrical. With four openings, we don’t have a true middle.

For another few years, I turned this space into what I called The Garden of Rusty Things. I even had a sign made.

I planted daylilies, a climbing rose, and clematis Happy Jack under the truck frame. A rock pile supported a 500 gallon gas tank (subsequently sold), surrounded by myriad rusty items–old garden tools, a wagon, a sink, a gate, an iron bed.

This spring, I decided I had enough pavers and stepping stones to create a parterre. I wanted a pond or a fountain, a bench, some plants. Keeping it simple. We surrounded a square bit of level ground with the stepping stones, creating a walkway.

We had black plastic trash bags on hand, purchased last year to cover the raised beds in hopes of killing weed seeds. Bags went under the stepping stones, again as a weed preventer. Pea pebbles are planned between the stepping stones, with rubber edging on the outside edge and pavers along the inner to keep the pea pebbles in place.

Stay tuned. Next week–the pond.

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