The garden is now officially a year old. Hard to believe it's been that long since my dad put the lawn down and built the patio.
Here are some photos of the garden in the spring of 2005. The concept is much the same as the original plan. Some plants have had to move to more suitable environments, some just plain died. Watering is the main challenge. An underground sprinkler system would really help in this climate, but is not the budget right now.
The view above shows the patio as it is now, one year after being built. I've added some potted plants and have to remember to water them regularly! The area surrounding the patio proved unsuitable for the lavender I had planted there. All but one of the lavender plants died. I think this was because, during rainy periods, that area stays soaked with runoff from the roof (the house doesn't have guttering). I was able to save one of the lavender plants and move it to the flowerbed along the back fence.
The flowerbed along the back fence is now home to several tomato plants, which are all fruiting like crazy :-) I've also got crepe myrtles on either side of the swing, clematis climbing up trellis, and various other plants and shrubs.
This view from the other side shows the azalea bed behind the house, with the birdbath in the middle. The azaleas have come on pretty well, but I seriously need to address guttering and drainage. When it rains, all the mulch in this bed tends to get washed away with runoff from the roof because I don't have guttering and downspouts to direct the water elsewhere.
Here's a photo of the front flowerbed. It was taken in April, so the crepe myrtle that dominates the bed is nothing but sticks. You should see it now, it's covered in white blooms :-)