Landscape plantings for a 3' high picket fence

We have just installed a 3' high 32' long picket fence. The fence accents just the right front side of the house and is positioned in front of a 30' pine and 2 burning bushes. There is an area in front of the fence for plantings. I would like something to be neat and tidy throughout the year but would also like good hardy perennials that bloom for a long period. I don't like day lilies as they are messy after they bloom. The fence sits about 100' from the road and gets full sun. We have a very healthy deer population and we live in central Ohio. I was thinking that boxwoods with maybe some Russian sage or salvia would work nicely. What ideas do you suggest? Am I off base with what I suggested? On the one post of the fence we will have a large USA flag which will be near a pole lamp to illuminate. Thank you. AR


ANSWER

I actually like Boxwood, particularly the variety 'Green Velvet'. These will be the perfect height as their mature height is about 2 1/2 feet tall.

As far as perennials go, you might consider using three different varieties in front of the Boxwood. In this way, you will have color at different times of the year and the Boxwood will provide greenery in the winter time. Of course you could choose perennial flowers that bloom all together for a big splash of color also!

Here are some to consider that take the sun and are relatively deer resistant. By the way, I think the Russian Sage will be too tall in front of the Boxwood. You might consider using a few at each corner, which might look nice.

Salvia (as you mentioned)
Black Eyed Susan
Coneflower - **good one!
Liatris
Sedum 'Autumn Joy'
Lamb's Ear - nice color and texture contrast
Fountain Grass

Take a look at the pages I have on perennials. This is a good page to start with and has further links at the bottom of the page.

http://www.landscape-design-advice.com/perennial-flowers.html

Good luck!
Susan

Comments for Landscape plantings for a 3' high picket fence

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Layers
by: Anonymous

A great layered look can be a hearty hedge like a boxwood and I like the idea of mixing a muhly grass with some salvias, or even a more uniform holly...

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"Susan,  what a pleasure it was to work with you.  You made me feel like I was your only client - responding late at night and always so quickly!  Your design is amazing and we only hope we can do justice to it when we plant.  You have such fantastic ideas and you are so open to suggestions and changes.  Loved working with you - now if you could only come to Canada and plant it!!!"
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