The back area against the house will have river stones since we were discouraged from planting anything closer than 18 inches from the foundation (due to Carpenter ants).
I pulled apart a humongous Hosta and planted parts of it at the rear. They are hearty and love shade or part sun. Only the first 4 to 5 feet of the garden gets direct sun.
My plans for herbs are growing Lavender, Basil and Calendula from seed. If I purchase some seedlings as well parsley is the only definite so far. I've been consulting A Place in the Rain: Designing the West Coast Garden and of course Internet sources. I think I may also reference Sugar Snaps and Strawberries: Simple Solutions for Creating Your Own Small-Space Edible Garden once I return from a vacation to Quebec in two weeks.
And as for my other edible plans my heat drenched south facing balcony is going to house some Heirloom tomatoes and is currently germinating some green peas. I'm also going to attempt some squash and green peppers. Ambitious you say? Well, yes it is. But it's all about trial and error and finding out what works in our new home. I'll certainly be busy this summer but for me it's a fun busy when it comes to playing in the dirt!