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Your beautiful Chicago garden

Your beautiful Chicago garden should be a wonderland of natural splendor that brings you joy, solace and peace. Early spring is the time to plan and create it. Many of Chicago’s property owners have large lots, but even if you don’t you can design your own private world.

Spring gardens
Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

Planning is the key to a beautiful garden. Decide what you want to grow, where you want to grow it and how much money you have to create the garden. Yes, you can have a garden for very little money. Commitment to your garden is a key factor because beauty takes effort and dedication.

Seek advice from Chicago conservatories, libraries and neighbors. Online sites are overflowing with information. After you consult a variety of sources, it’s time to make decisions.

Examining what is already growing in your garden is the first step to creating it. If you like a plant, keep it. Get rid of what you don’t like. You might sell unwanted plants at a garage sale, or give them to a neighbor to enjoy, or swap them for a neighbor’s plant. Once your garden contains only the plants you want, it’s time to create planting beds.

Planting beds can be placed wherever you want them. They can be in the center of the yard or along your property lines. They can be in any shape, size or grouping you choose. They can be developed over time or immediately. You decide.

The soil in your beautiful garden should be crumbly and easy to work with. If it’s hard, lumpy and heavy with clay, you need to blend in sand and compost until it’s workable. Waterlogged soils in low-lying areas need to have the grade raised. Try filling the area with pruned branches and topping it with topsoil before planting.

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