Helen’s Haven Fall Woodland Gardens One and Too

Woodland Bed Too Due to the shade, the box are taking their sweet ole time connecting

Back of the property, xeric, interesting.  Helen’s Haven has two Woodland Gardens.  Both are small gardens.  Woodland Garden One is  xeric and sunny.  Woodland Garden Too is xeric and shady.  One is on the North side of the Crinum Bed and Too is on the South side of the Crinum Bed.  .

Ok, enough for the location.  Now I will bore you with the history, well, at least Too has history.

Because of the shade, when I first developed this garden, I thought it would be a great location for Hostas.  That worked for a while until I stressed over watering them.  They were in the “water sucked up by the pines zone” so I was forever hauling water to them.  Of course this was before our infamous drought of 2007.  You would think the worse drought in 100 years would wise me up, but no.  It was voles.

The voles moved in to munch these tasty treats.  I evaluated  the site and accepted the fact that I had shade, voles, and dry soil.  It was also at the farthest reach from the garden hose.  Hello xeric.  I will accept you for who you are.  Out of respect, I redesigned the bed to work around all the conditions – a design that would not require any attention from me.

What’s important about these beds is that I have to do NOTHING to them.  The plantings in each don’t require water or if they do, I treat them with benign neglect.  The one exception is the Illicium.  I have it planted near a water source.

Voles were the best thing in the world to happen. Without the voles, I wouldn’t have evulated the watering needs as well and wouldn’t have decided to plant Hellebores.  I love, love, love Hellebores.  Always green, flowers in the winter, poisonous to voles.

I also like the look of woodland plants.  Or maybe it is the look they become in a woodland setting.

I’ve written about aspects of Too in the past,.  Actually, I’ve kinda ignored Too for a very long time with a hunkin’ Ligusrum in it.  You might find this post interesting. Removing a Giant Ligustrum from Woodland Garden Too

Here is what I have in Woodland Garden One:

Oakleaf Hydrangea

Woodland Garden One

Aesculus flava, Buckeye

Agastache, purple/pink

Amophophallus, Voodoo lily

Amsonia ‘Blue Ice’

Amsonia ‘Blue star’

Callitropsis × leylandii, Leyland Cypress

Camellia, Standard Grand Slam

Unknown variety Redbud

Cercis, Red bud

Colocasia, Black Magic – 2009 had enough water from above to make happy.

Cornus florida, Dogwood

Cornus sericea, Yellow twig dogwood

Diantius, Pink ‘Fire Witch’

Gaura lindheimeri, Colso

Hellebore, Hellebore hybridus

Hydrangea quercifolia, Oakleaf hydrangea

Iberis sempervirens, Candy Tuft  ‘Purity’

Lineria, Spice Bush

Magnolia Gandiflora, Southern Magnolia – Six Plants I can’t Live Without
Mahonia, Mahonia

Nandinia domestica, Nandania

Panicum virgatum ‘Shenandoah’

Rosa ‘White Lady Banks’

Here is what I have in Woodland garden Too:

Woodland Garden Too

AbeliaRose Creek’


Aspidistra elatior ‘Asahi’

Callitropsis × leylandii, Leyland cypress

Castanea mollissima, Chinese Chestnut

Chrysogorum virginionum ‘Allen Bush’, Green and Gold

Dryopteris x australis, Dixie wood fern

Helleborus ‘Double Queen Strain’, Lenten Rose

Helleborus foetidus

Helleborus x hybridus, Pine Knot Select

Ilex ‘Southern Gentlemen’

IlexWinter Red’

Oastanea dentana, Chinese Chestmut

Rhodea japonica, Sacred Lily, Evergreen Hosta

Rhodea japonica, Asian Valley

Sanguinaria canadensis Bloodroot

Trachelospermum jasminoides, Confederate Jasamine

Trillium foetidissimum, Trillium

Rita’s fern

Hydrangea arborescens ‘Invincibelle Spirit’

Illicium Floridanum ‘Halley’s Comet’

Too looks puny in the image, but it’s not in real life.  Although I will admit, it is still filling out…but looking good in my book.

Helen Yoest is a garden writer and coach through her business Gardening With Confidence™

Follow Helen on Twitter @HelenYoest and her facebook  friend’s page, Helen Yoest or Gardening With Confidence™ Face Book Fan Page.

Helen also serves on the board of advisors for the JC Raulston Arboretum



  1. tina said

    Awesome! My whole garden here seems to be woodland and I need to go xeric. Your oakleafs rock! I also love the hellebores. The voles don’t bother the plants now? They eat everything here-urgh! Love your plant lists. I will refer to them from time to time. I have most of these plants but no panicum, ilex, and a few others. Might have to look into that. Is one of your woodland gardens in the back by the leylands? That is such a lovely little cove back there.

  2. Janet said

    Love seeing the lists of plants you have grouped together. Very nice selection, of course!

  3. Tina, Thanks. It’s getting there. Love to see what you have on your xeric list.

    Janet, you too. What fines gems do you have on your xeric list? H.

  4. […] Did a post on Helen’s Haven Woodland Gardens Fall Woodland Gardens One and Too. […]

  5. you have many kind of hellebore there in your woodland garden, too. It seems wodwerful!

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