Where the floor line is just enough above grade to admit of base plantings use plants dwarf in character (Fig. 81), with larger growing varieties at the corners and in the blank wall spaces between windows. An error to avoid is the planting of anything in front of window openings that will attain a height great enough to interfere with the light.
The outlines of base plantings should always be sinuous, extending out at the corners and receding to the face of the building. Where the width of the bed permits, the use of tall and low growing plants (Fig. 82) adds greatly to the effect from the approach.
A popular practice today is the use of a miscellaneous assortment of evergreens in beds close to the house (Fig. 83). When the plants are small the effect is undoubtedly attractive and the contrast of the blue, green and golden foliage pleasing. Builders of suburban houses which it is desired to sell quickly have taken advantage of this appeal and, without thought of the future, have used these evergreen base plantings to the exclusion almost, in some communities, of the more desirable shrubbery groupings. This practice should not be followed in planting the home grounds. Many of the evergreens used are not dwarf types and soon outgrow their positions. The effect becomes monotonous in the extreme and lacks the variety of foliage, flower and fruit attainable by the use of a judicious selection of shrubs and broad-leaved evergreens.
A good selection of shrubs of a rather dwarf character can be made up from the following list: Spiraea Thunbergii, Spiraea Anthony Waterer, Deutzia gracilis, Caryopteris, Berberis Thunbergii, Azalea mollis, Desmodium penduliflorum, Deutzia Lemoinei, Daphne Mezereum, Forsythia suspensa, Spiraea arguta, Amygdalus nana, Ceanothus americana, Coriaria japonica, Hypericum aureum, Andromeda speciosa (Fig. 84). If the planting admits the use of larger growing plants these varieties are splendid for use close to the house: Spiraea Van Houttei, Rhodotypos kerrioides, Philadel-phus Lemoinei, Neviusia alabamensis, Ligustrum Regelianum, Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora, Hydrangea arborescens grandiflora alba, Callicarpa purpurea, Weigela Eva Rathke.
The broad-leaved evergreens are splendid for base plantings (Fig. 77), and will usually grow easily on any but a due southern exposure. The attractiveness of the foliage in Winter recommends them for liberal use in plantings near the house. Dwarf and tall growing kinds may be had in a diversity of form and foliage.
Fig. 81. - " Where the floor line is just enough above the grade to admit of base plantings, use plants dwarf in character." Hardy shrubs provide more variety of foliage, flower and fruit than do the coniferous evergreens so often used. - See page 84.
BASE PLANTINGS Fig. 82. - We show a correct use of deciduous shrubs as a base planting. The outline of base plantings should always be sinuous, extending out at the corners and receding to the face of the building. - See page 85.
AN INCORRECT BASE PLANTING Fig. 83. - " A popular practice today is the use of a miscellaneous assortment of evergreens in beds close to the house." - See page 85.
ILLUSTRATING USE OF SHRUBS IN BASE PLANTING.
Fig. 84. - A good base planting of the larger growing shrubs. To complete the setting, two specimen trees, one at each end of the house, are needed to properly frame the dwelling. - See page 85.
Fig. 85.-Plan showing a lawn planting around a small house. The trees marked No. 1 are placed for the purpose of a background, while those designated No. 2 are arranged for the framing of the residence. The belt plantation, shown in an irregular fashion, is more interesting and gives a greater variety to the scene than is possible with a straight border. Deciduous and evergreen trees are shown at the broad portions of the bed to give the necessary height and a more pleasing skyline. - See page 91.
Among the best are the Azaleas, the hybrid Rhododendrons, the Andromedas, Japanese Holly, Aucuba viridis, Kalmia latifolia, Laurocerasus, Abelia grandiflora, the Mahonias, Leucothoes and Phillyrea.