Stumpery Garden

This gardener uses donated tree stumps to create a very special landscape.
From:
Similar Topics:
gby1906_1-stumpery1

gby1906_1-stumpery1

Originating in the English romantic period in the 19th century, a stumpery is a garden whose structure is based on tree stumps. Quite characteristic of its era, it's a perfect example of the Victorians' romanticized and exaggerated sense of nature.

"A true stumpery is not just a stump that somebody has found and then planted," says Pat Riehl as she walks through a landscape filled with stumps that serve both as sculptural elements as well as home to many plants.

gby1906_1-stumpery2

gby1906_1-stumpery2

Pat's garden consists of stumps that she got from a variety of sources, ranging from friends to local arborists who gladly donate leftover tree stumps to her garden. "The best stumps are the ones available," says Pat.

Stumps are often seen as waste from the garden, and no one usually knows what to do with them. Why not incorporate them into your garden beds? If your neighbors are fresh out of stumps, call construction companies or recycling centers and ask for tree stumps. It might take some searching but is well worth it.

gby1906_1a-autumn-fern

gby1906_1a-autumn-fern

In this woodland garden, the plants are just as important as the stumps. Pat plants a variety of ferns, like Autumn fern or Japanese painted fern, in the niches and pockets of the stumps.

Unusual selections, such as the eared lady fern (Athyrium otophorum), complement more commonly used ferns.

gby1906_1c-dryopteris-sieboldii

gby1906_1c-dryopteris-sieboldii

Have a look at the beautiful broad fronds of Siebold's wood fern (Dryopteris sieboldii).

To plant a stump, look for the planting pockets, which are the various nooks and crannies of the stump. Since the stumps generally have some soil and other organic matter already inside the planting pockets, simply insert the root ball of the plant into the pocket. Pat uses sphagnum moss to tuck around the root ball, therefore helping to retain the soil. Keep the plants in the stump watered thoroughly.

Next Up

Add Magnolias and Michelias to Your Garden

These small trees offer so much more than spring flowers.

Designing a Garden with Trees

Planting a tree enhances your landscape, but choosing the right tree and position is important.

How to Plant a Tree in Your Garden

Plant trees well and they will pay dividends, providing your yard with color, shade and structure for many years to come.

Notables in a Riverside Garden

A special rhododendron and azalea, a tatting fern, crested iris and little epaulette tree are perfect additions to a riverside garden.

Decorate Your Garden With Ornamental Trees

Learn how to choose a tree that will last, and delight, for years.

How Healthy Are Your Trees?

How to spot danger signs and potential problems.

Know Your Tree's Roots

Learn more about complex tree root systems.

Growing Figs in the Home Garden

There are thousands of varieties of fig trees worldwide that grow in a range of conditions. Here are tips for growing them at home from the garden experts at HGTV.com.

Trees For Winter Bark

Beauty is only skin deep. Learn how to create winter interest with trees that exfoliate beautiful bark.

Growing Multi-Stemmed Trees

You can buy multi-stemmed trees, which require no further pruning — or you can coax a single-stemmed tree into developing multiple trunks.

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.