This section is from the book "How To Make A Flower Garden", by Wilhelm Miller. Also available from Amazon: The Well-Tended Perennial Garden: Planting and Pruning Techniques.
There is nothing that will improve a place more than having the garbage, ashes and trash out of sight, especially if the place be small and in the suburbs. When we moved just out of New York City, early in May of one year, we decided we should make the hiding of these unsightly cans our chief aim of the garden that year.
To begin with, we purchased two corrugated galvanised iron ash barrels and one garbage can. These we painted a gray green, then placed them in a pen back of the grape arbour. Along the back of the pen there was a very pretty arbour-vitae hedge, which helped us greatly in our scheme. The sides of the pen were made of chicken wire, and on one of these sides we planted climbing nasturtiums, and on the other ornamental gourds, wild cucumber vine, and castor-oil bean. Along the hedge on each side were sunflowers, which, when they grew to a height of ten feet, drew attention from anything below. We led the gourd and cucumber over to the grape arbour some distance away, also along the clothes-lines and posts. This almost made a roof, and draped the front of the pen so prettily that the objects inside were hardly noticeable at all.
Unsightly objects screened by wild cucumber and nasturtium.
The wild cucumber is one of the most useful and ornamental of the annual climbers. It has an extremely pretty leaf and feathery white flowers, while the large oval seed-pod is covered with spines. It drops its seed very abundantly, and will reappear year after year.
A pergola In a formal garden at Brookline.