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Saturday, July 19, 2014

world's collide

i love how in the garden unexpected things happen...not all of the unexpected things that happen are good. like when all the purple broccoli you planted gets eaten by something invisible or how some seeds just don't germinate at all.  i planted nasturtiums in the spring by seed...i don't have a single one in my beds.  or how the tomatoes i grew from seed and planted on the hottest day just dried up and shriveled.

but back to the good things. this is about those things. like the fact that i adore rust and i adore plants. when these two are combined i have a surge of inspiration.

it's a rainy saturday but i don't mind...of course because i'm a gardener and we gardeners love rain.



rain brings new life like these tiny leaves on my purple moustache beans...it's growing on an old wrought iron bed in my front victory garden/potager. i love the way these tiny bright chartreuse green leaves look on the twisted purple stalk all the while twisting around this rusted wrought iron bed post. 

another view of the purple moustache beans tendrils on the rusty bed post.


also the contrast between the brightness of the green leaves of the sunflower not yet blooming and the darkness of the rusted garden gate just says to me.
 "this is right".


add in white and i'm all in. this tillandsia or air plant on a bed of moss looks so happy in this ole' bird feeder with it's rusty base. 

don't you just the love the idea of something freshly painted next to an old rusted white chair?  i do. 
lavender and rust...a must.
some of my nandina are already turning to that lovely burnt orange hue...well sitting in front of an old rusted stroller makes it twice as nice to me. 


this persian shield and ruby red caladium looks so at home next to the rusty bit of fence stuck inside the plant container. 


i got two of these white columnar stands at one of my favourite local antique spots(City Farmhouse)...i am still trying to decide the best suited area in the garden to place them. but don't you just love the bit of rust on the the top capital and the fact that they are white and textural is a big plus.

my oak~leaf hydrangea are turning from originally white to blush pink to russet pink and now this amazing colour of coppery rust. 
this could well be my favourite plant in my garden. 
close up of just one cluster of this beauty



this 1930's birdcage is hanging just outside our back door leading to the patio garden. the patina on this antique couldn't be any more beautiful. my intention for this is to put in some succulents but i could look at it all day just as it is. another find at city farmhouse here 


i hope y'all are enjoying your summer gardens and adding in whatever tickles your fancy. 


happy july,
marmee





Saturday, June 14, 2014

snippet of june in the potager

june is all about growth. it is always surprising to me after winter's bleakness...just how quickly everything bursts into life. the photos below are from our potager in the front fenced in garden...it gets full sun.
 i love this new geranium.



teddy bear magnolia blooming



tickseed

southern magnolia blossom

hot lips salvia

hot lips salvia

purple fountain grass

tri~colour sage

 pansies still blooming

lettuce heads

red leaf lettuce, lettuce heads, pansies, and beats.

i love lettuce leaves

another view of hot lips salvia

oregano

thyme with strawberries

strawberries

greens of june are bright and vibrant

birdbath

dusty miller, red pentunias, & cosmos

rosemary standard, red potato vine, red leaf lettuce, lobelia & wisteria
&
we have had constant hummers visiting the hot~lips.

white drift roses coming up on the other side of where they are planted.

limon

dahlias

dahlia buds

of course vivian is always right there with me

sedum

twirling pollinator attractor

wisteria

we have been constantly putting out suet

bright yellow dahlia

antoinette on my front porch

one look through the potager


dahlias 





happy june,

marmee

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

our victory garden ~ potager

we have finally removed the last bits of what was planted before we arrived in our front fenced in victory garden~potager. the last three barberry bushes were taken out last week. i replaced two of them with fothergilla, my first experience with these so i am excited to see what they will do.

up next to the front porch i wanted some foundational plants so i planted reblooming lilacs. i am a sucker for any shrub or tree that blooms. this is the second spring they have been there and i am beyond happy with the results. i planted some heucheras and black mondo grass(ophiopogon plansicapus) between them. they still need some time to multiply to look good.




 i now have five raised beds for edibles. one is planted with wild strawberries, some thyme, and i put some nasturtium seeds in there last week. another bed has garlic onions, oregano, basil and parsley. two more beds have been seeded with kissing booth beets, crop circle radishes, arugula, red leaf lettuce, grandpa admire's lettuce head, broccoli early purple, marigolds and i also planted pansies and black tulips in one of these. the last raised bed has our garlic and this year i planted leeks for the first time, it also has lemon balm.


black flowers intrigue me so i plant any i can get my hands on. these tulips are on their second year.

 new little seedlings from the broccoli early purple.


                     mounds of oregano.
wild strawberries that have mostly been eaten by the birds in the past couple of years, not any more.


 this year i added a few new things like i do most years.
new to me, hops as a vining interest around the pole that holds the suet feeder and a hanging planter with succulents.
do any of you have any experience with hops?

i also added saliva, hot lips. the minute it went in the ground a hummer found it. i will happily wait until it really has blooms and attracts all the pollinators it wants.


as you might know we added chickens last spring and now have 10 hens, each one a different type. here's a few of them free roaming, as we like to call it.





 well i knew we would have to come up with some kind of solution for our raised beds because the chooks wanting to stratch around in the beds and look for bugs and worms.  i saw a picture of a play tent for children and thought that would work. i know that sounds completely insane but that's how my mind works. i showed a picture to my hubby and he set about to get them built. i knew he would come up with something but the covers he made are brilliant. he used two by two's and bird netting. the result is not only completely chicken proof  it is also bird proof, dog proof, small children proof and very beautiful to boot.



        i am completely thrilled with the end result.

this front fenced in area used to be all grass and some rather ugly landscaping or a lack of any design.  here's a before from october of 2010.   i like it a lot more now and we get great edibles from our simple design.


we killed the grass over the course of the last few years by laying down newspaper, craft paper, opened card board boxes then covering it with pine-straw mostly.  we did amend the soil around the foundational plants and then in the raise beds we used a combination of composts(mushroom, hen, cow) as well as worm castings, peat moss, manure, vermiculite and a small amount of sand in some.

i also bought a vintage four~poster wrought iron bed from an estate sale. it's smaller than a twin but bigger than a crib. i plant our beans on it and a vining black~eyed susan.
here it is on a particularly foggy morning last summer.

we now have added some feeders, waterers, and humming bird nectar so we can enjoy the wildlife from the front porch.




 at the present the weather is permitting, it is coffee on the front porch swing most mornings and we (me and hubby) love it out there.

         sometimes he sits in the rooster chair.
then there is always the bench too. 

we even have some seating in the garden itself.
this photo was taken last summer when the dahlias were blooming.  we welcome visitors to come sit a spell in our front victory garden/potager.

happy days,
marmee