Le Jardinet Newsletter

 September 2011
What makes a garden memorable? What transforms it from just a collection of plants into something special? 


Design by Jim Guthrie

I am often invited to help homeowners answer this. They know that 'something isn't right' but can't see how to improve things. I can quickly explain what the problem is and offer a number of solutions to help you realize the full potential of your garden. It may be as simple as moving around existing plants to get a more cohesive look, editing what is already there (how often have you added yet more plants in an effort to make things look better?) or establishing a focal point. 

September is the perfect time to assess your garden and get answers to your questions. You have observed it over several months and can now pinpoint those problem areas. If you would like some professional design assistance, call or email me to set up an appointment for a landscape consultation. Let's get things ready for 2012!
September Sales!


This is the time of year when you can score some great bargains at the nurseries. Typically all deciduous trees, including Japanese maples are reduced up to 50%. What better way to be sure you have some late season interest?

Paperbark maple and cabin
We found a lovely paperbark maple (Acer griseum) to plant near our little cabin


As perennials begin to die down they are also sold at discount prices. These are always snapped up by knowing gardeners, since despite the dying foliage, if the roots are healthy you'll have a good looking plant next spring. You may even be able to divide some of these perennials to get a few 'free' extras. Daylilies, iris and certain grasses are ideal for this.


The soil is still warm in September but the days are cooler and with more rainfall than  summer so this is a good time to get new plants established. Their roots grow into the surrounding soil easily and settle in before winter.


A great tip I was given for planting (or transplanting) larger trees and shrubs is to sink a length of perforated drainage pipe into the hole alongside the roots. Face the holes towards the roots then pour half a bucket of water directly into the pipe as needed to be sure that water is reaching deep enough. We've been doing this with all our large trees this year with great success.


Koto no ito
We both fell in love with the 'Koto-no-ito' Japanese maple (the translation means harp strings)

A final stop for bargains is the 'stump alley' section of nurseries where less than perfect plants are sold at ridiculously cheap prices. If conifers are partially brown, don't buy them as they rarely recover. But if a deciduous tree takes your eye which has a funky shape due to a branch missing it may be worth buying. Most trees continue to grow considerable branching structures throughout their life so in a couple of years you'll never notice that gap. We found a lovely paperbark maple this way.


Have fun! 





Back to top 


Follow my Blog!

Spiraea and barberry
Shrubs can offer just as much color as perennials but without all the work

Garden Adventures - for thumbs of all colors, is a lighthearted, information packed blog for all gardeners and garden lovers. Laugh while you learn, pick up new ideas and be inspired by others.





The most popular post this month was Reducing Maintenance (and backache) in the Garden. Click on the title to enjoy it again.


Don't miss out! Sign up today to receive these posts automatically. Just head over to my blog and follow the instructions 'subscribe by email'. 


Back to top
Le jardinet is now on Facebook



Stop by each day to enjoy photographs, garden news and links to the latest garden products: all in bite sized chunks. 



P.S. You don't need a Facebook account to view a business Facebook page


Find me on Facebook 


Back to top
My Seminars this Month

Trilogy Garden Club, Redmond, WA
September 7th 7.00-8.00pm

Designing Garden Memories.   

Gardens should be experienced, not just observed. Learn how to design a memorable garden journey with ideas for entrances, pathways, garden 'moments' along the way and destinations which lure you deeper into the landscape. Using beautiful photographs you'll gain confidence whether you need to add interest and a new look to existing gardens or start from scratch, no matter how large or small your space.

A 1 hour PowerPoint presentation. 
By invitation only.

Bastyr University, Kenmore
September 24th 9.00am-12.30pm
Inspired Design for Gardens Large & Small
Enjoy a PowerPoint presentation on creating stunning plant combinations and vignettes, learning how professionals use color cues and texture in garden design. Using these techniques I will then demonstrate how to plant up two unique container gardens that will continue to look fabulous until spring before giving a final inspirational look at some of my other designs. Beautiful photography and new ideas will give you confidence to create the garden of your dreams, no matter how large or small the space. 
Fee; $49 before Sept. 9th, $64 after Sept. 9th  

Print out this flyer

Registration details

Back to top 

Le Jardinet in (another) New Publication


Tips book cover
Click on book to purchase

Tips for Container Gardening  from the editors and contributors (including me!) of Fine Gardening magazine.


This latest collection is brimming with 300 essential tips, savvy shortcuts, and tried-and-true techniques, celebrating the growing popularity of container gardening. Tips for Container Gardening promises to bring out the bountiful best in all containers, large or small. 


Back to top

September Garden Events


  • Sat September 10th, 10-11.30am Inspiration from World Class Gardens. Seminar by my good friend Marianne Binetti Molbaks
  • Fri September 16th (noon-6pm) - Sat. 17th, (9am-2pm). Northwest Horticultural Society Plant Sale, North Seattle Community College. The unusual and the fabulous at great prices. Don't miss this one! Directions
  • Sat September 16th - 17th, 10-4pm. Whidbey Island 6th Annual Farm Tour. Free self guided tour of 18 working farms featuring locally grown food and products. Details.
  • Sat. September 17th, 10-11am Adding Beauty and Structure to your Garden Design. Seminar by another good friend (!) Don Marshall Molbaks
  • Fri September 23rd, 6-7pm.Designs for the Fall and Winter Garden. Seminar by renowned plantsman, author and designer Dan Hinkley. Molbaks $10 (includes a glass of wine)
  • Sat. September 24th, 10-11am Living and Gardening with Deer. Seminar by Jessi Bloom (I'd better go to this one!) Molbaks
  • Sat September 24th, 10am-2pm. Piper Orchard's Annual Fall Festival of Fruit and Tour, Seattle. Tour the orchard, watch cider being made, enter an apple pie contest and more! Details.

Share the News
Love these newsletters? Want to tell your friends about some of the fun events or share some of my design ideas? Either click  or use the social media links at the top of the page to send via Facebook, Twitter and the like. Encourage friends and family to sign up so they don't miss out on special offers, plant news and local garden events!

Want more? My newsletters are now archived on my website so you can look up seasonal tips and photographs from previous editions.

Enjoy the golden days of late summer


Karen Chapman CPH
Le Jardinet
425 765 3574 
In This Issue
September Sales
Follow my Blog
My Seminars
New Publication
September Garden Events


Amsonia hubrichtii 


Threadleaf blue star
Amsonia hubrichtii

This perennial comes into its full glory in September as the feathery foliage turns shades of copper and gold. Sun or part shade, well drained soil. 3' tall x 2' wide. Best planted in masses.


Professional Affiliations

GWA logo

GGS logo
Book a seminar!

WSNLA logo

 NHS logo

Quick Links

Visit my blog

Find me on Facebook

View my profile on LinkedIn

Back to the top


Imagination goes here
Join Our Mailing List