Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I Showed my Horrible Grubby Grassless area, Now take a Look at My Good Grass

Taken from my bedroom window on a cloudy Sunday afternoon (5/29/11):

Those of you have been following me for a few years may have spotted something different way in the back.  For at least two years, I have been trying to get DH (back to DH, he hates being referred to as Mr. Z--says it makes him sound like a wimp--he must have been reading my blog while I was away) to knock down the ugly top soil pile so I could plant it.

He finally did it today -- it took all of 15 minutes for him to get his part done.  I then went and dug up a few pieces of hosta from six different clumps and put them around the bottom.  There is little sun back there, so I plan to plant different hostas at inclining levels.  I buried the birdhouse in to bring in a bit of blue color I am using again this year.  I planted yellow daylilies under it. That is as far as I got today.  It already looks much better.

This shot was taken from the front yard.  It also has a new element that we added today.  I will save that one for  another post.

This is a good shot (taken at 5pm on 5/30/11) showing you all the way back to the rockwall garden.
where the creeping phlox is in full bloom:
I removed tons and tons of it last year, but I still have tons more. :)

These are two volunteer tulips...I am pretty sure they came in on the end of shovelful of something I moved from the rockwall garden.

This has been a very good  year for tulips in my garden.  I have not planted new tulips in three years because I spend a ton of money and they rarely come back with blooms -- just big fat flowerless foliage. 

The tulip Gods  must have been lingering over my garden this spring because  a lot more than normal produced nice blooms.  Every time that happens I go hog wild buying more tulips in the fall forgetting that it's rare for them to look good more than the first year.

I do love tulips, though. I think I will plant a bunch more in the front of the house border this fall.

Speaking of the front of the house, I have an apple tree and a crab apple tree in bloom right now.  The crab only blooms fully every other year. It has way more flowers this year (its off year) than normal.

In the rockwall garden I have two cherry trees in bloom.
This is the larger of the two I planted three years ago. So far the birds have gotten the few cherries, but one of these years, I plan to get enough cherries to make a pie.

I am linking to Jean's Blooming Tuesday and to Garden Tuesday and a Southern Daydreamer's Outdoor Wednesday and The Little Round Table, This Week in My Garden.  Please check out the other gardeners around the country to see what they have blooming this week.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Thank You for Your Service to Our Country

Today is the day we thank all veterans for their service to our country.  So many young men and women gave their lives so we could enjoy the freedom we have today. 

I want to extend a special thank you to my husband, who served in the Vietnam War and to my father who is a Korean war veteran. As young teens who knew nothing about Washington and politics,  they both enlisted to serve their country in whatever capacity they were asked to serve.

These are my husband's combat boots from Vietnam:

He was lucky. He came home.  So many others did not. 

Today we remember those who gave their young lives so we could be free. 

Saying "thank you" is hardly enough.

Update 4:49PM: 
I want to add these two pics of my Mom & Dad, who attended memorial ceremonies today and  put a wreath on the Korean war memorial.  Do you see all those white crosses? My Dad and two or three others painted all of them about two weeks ago.

I, as always, was at work. But my sister was off and went to the service and took these pictures.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Cordyline Container Recipe

I finally found out how I can reply to comments during this Blogger meltdown...after I hit post comment three times, then I get my sign in/password box. If I DO NOT check the box to keep signed in, it seems to work. Someone on Deb's blog commented about that little trick and it works for me! A big thank you to Deb's commenter!

I decided to use the Cordyline plant as the "thriller" in this container.  (My original thought was to use it as a filler with some Tropicana's, but it's too big), so it will be the star.

Here is the recipe:

1 large Cordyline - $7.99--the Thriller
1 Proven Winners Colorblaze 'Sedona' - $5.00 -- filler
3 purple kale - roughly .40 each - $1.20 total - spillers - unconventional, I know
1 Purple Heart - $1.88 - spiller
1 Gerbera Daisy (will have orange/red flowers) - free from one of my clients at work - roughly $5 to buy - filler
2 Feathery Coleus - $1.88 each - total $3.76 - fillers
3 blue Salvia - .40 each - total of $1.20

Here is some Kale and one of the feathery coleus:
 The purple plant in the front is the 'Purple Heart'. I am hoping this and the kale will grow slightly over the side to act as  spillers.  I did not want something that would cover the entire container...just something with a little spill effect.  We shall see if this works....

I added a few blue Salvia near the  orangey/purpley coleus 'Sedona'
I put my gifted Gerbera daisy right in the front, which completed this container:
I am excited about this one. Don't I always say that?  LOL.  But I do love the color of the container, it's embossed ferns (which is why I don't want spillers covering it), and the subdued colors of the plants.  I am thinking this guy may be the one I choose to sit on my new front porch.  Although, tomorrow's container recipe is another one I am all giddy over!   As I said, I love them all! :)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Arbor Wall Planters

Just in case my morning glory vine does not grow up the big arbor, I decided to plant my wall pocket containers. I doubled them up on the big arbor.
 Before long these inside walls will be completely covered in orange/purple/chartreuse.  I put orange petunias and a dark sweet potato vine (ipomoea) on both top sections.

The lower sections have purple petunias and chartreuse ipomoea.

If the blue Morning Glories decide to grow this year, I think they will look fine with this color combo.  If not, I can just unwire the baskets and move them to the deck.

The smaller arbor is planted with blue salvia and a yellow/green vinca vine.  I left space on the side to add something else if I see anything interesting.  This spot is pretty shady, so perhaps a nice coleus...

At least this year the arbors will not be totally bare if the vines decide not to grow (as they usually do)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Big French Urn Planting Recipe

We bought these two urns earlier this week.

I planted them exactly the same using these plants:

and one Tropicana that I removed from one of the 49 planters we brought out yesterday. Yes, I stored 49 planters over the winter. Here are three of the larger ones--I removed the Trops from the round one.

They all have either dahlias, cannas or calla lilies.  Just imagine all the money I saved by  not having to rebuy these plants!

 Here is the free Tropicana that I used to begain this combination planter.
Here's my Thriller, Filler, Spiller recipe:

1 Tropicanna - Free (would cost about $20 to buy one Tropicana from a place like Home Depot) - Thriller- you have to use your imagination as there is no thrill yet...Give it a few weeks and the big striped leaves will begin to fill the area.
1 Purple Fountain Grass - $5-filler (also a mini thriller in my humble opinion)
1 Asparagus Fern $1.88-spiller
1 feather-leaf coleus $1.88-filler
1 Purple Heart  $1.88-filler
1 Sweet Potato Vine - 'Bright Ideas Rusty Red' - $5.00-spiller - (I splurged on this because I have never seen this variety. I could have used 'Blackie' for $1.88, but I like the rusty red of this one)
1 Trebbiano Dahlia Tuber - $7.50-filler
1/2 bag of Miracle Grow Potting Soil - $5.00

This is the feathery coleus which had no name on the container:

I really like it intertwined with the asparagus fern. 

I hope it survives. I have a lot of plants in these containers. It will be survival of the fittest!

Here is a close up of one planter, which looks nothing like what I envision them to be.
See the big bare spot in the back?  That's where the "thriller" plant is.

Very soon that little shoot will look a lot like this:
The dahlia is in front of the Trop and its starbrust flowers are nearly black:
The dark dahlias should be wonderful against the bright orange Tropicana blooms. 

 This is the container (from a few years ago) that I removed the Tropicana from.  I had Purple Fountain Grass next to it that year, too. Yes, that little clump of ugliness in the new planter should blossom into these big sprays of squirrel tails swaying in the wind (that is what those soft fuzzy blooms remind me of)

Yeah, it really does take a ton of faith to be a container gardener on the cheap!

Ye of little faith--just wait until you see these in late July. I am pretty sure they are going to have at least four feet of gorgeous foliage/flowers reaching toward the sky.  At least that's my plan............

I had a few Bells of Ireland seeds left over, so I stuck some in both planters.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Grape Hyacinth Bouquet

I have decided to take a few days to spend some quality family time with  my Mom & Dad and Aunt & Uncle.  Mr. Z will stay home to man the fort.  I hope he does not forget to water my seeds which I put in an area where the rain won't hit them.  I won't be available to check my email for three or four days....how will I survive??? 

I have set up a few days of posts, so you won't even notice that I am gone.  I apologize for not being able to comment on your blogs, but for the past two days Blogger has not been cooperating.  On to today's post...which was really done a couple days ago.

I came across an old Carnival glass candy jar while cleaning the storage cupboards.  I immediately thought that grape hyacinths would look nice in it.  Grape hyacinths are not easy to use in a floral arrangement because the stems would have to be wired to make them stand.  I remembered reading of a way to make them stand tall without wiring.

I went out and dug up a big clump--bulbs and all.  You need the bulbs for weight.  Hose off most of the soil, then wrap a rubber band around the bottom section.
 Then just plop it down in your container.  The weight of the bulbs keep them standing tall.
 I stuck in  a bit of that purple kale in the background, added some water, then covered the bulbs with this fiber.
 I thought some light purple creeping phlox would look nice so I went and cut a few handfuls and tucked them in.
Don't those colors play nicely against the Carnival glass?

I have enjoyed the arrangement for two days and today I am going to remove the grape hyacinths and replant them! They have not been harmed and will rebloom just as lovely next spring.

Remember that Lamb's Ear I planted last May:

 Here they are one year later completely filled in.
Now I bet they become a pest to keep in their boundary line. :)

The new color I painted the potting bench is:
Rapture Blue to be exact.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Johnny Appleseed, I am NOT, but I Keep Trying

Nonetheless I planted a bunch of seeds yesterday.  Maybe this will be the year that I can finally grow a few seeds planted directly in the ground.  But just in case it's not, I also planted some in pots. I seem to be more successful when I use pots.  I picked a few that I really really want to live --like these gorgeous Cherries Jubilee mounding nasturtiums that  Dianne sent me.

 I really want some Bells of Ireland for bouquets, so they went in this egg carton.

I love the colors of Jewel Mix Nasturtium. I planted some of them in pots and the rest went all along this walkway which is full of red pixie lilies, golden yellow daylilies and blue salvia.

Look at these very unusual Four O'Clocks Kaleidoscope. I really like streaky paintbrush stroke flowers.  I planted these all along the front of this garden.

The Vanilla Berry Mounding Nasturtiums (also from Dianne) were planted throughout this garden.

They will be a nice replacement for the primroses.  Fingers crossed that they will grow! 

I also planted blue morning glories at the base of both sides of the main arbor. 
I have tried them many times before, but have always planted them on the back side. Maybe this time they will take.
Did you notice that grape hyacinth flower arrangement sitting on the newly painted flower-arranging bench?  I will show you how I did that in my  next post.

I must now run outside and uncover two big French urns I planted yesterday. We had frost warnings last night. It's in the mid 30's right now.  At least the mosquitoes went away! We had one day in the high 70's and they suddenly appeared. Yesterday's high was only in the 50's, and they were gone. I would rather work in cooler weather than have those pesky insects all over me.

7:08 PM -I have tried four times today to answer comments and I can't it to work. Yet I see 3 of you commented.  What's the secret?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...