Tag: garden

Beautiful Gate Options

Beautiful Gate Options

Gates can either say “welcome” or “keep out”!  I love the gates that say “welcome”.

Now just because you may have a gate to keep intruders out of your yard, or to protect the wonderful recreation vehicle parked inside doesn’t mean your gate screams “keep out”.  BUT, it’s the gates that have a warm and welcoming feeling that I am thinking of now.

  • The gate that begs for you to enter under the arbor and into a garden.
  • The gate that is always left ajar so as not to discourage a visitor.
  • The gate that is nothing less than an artistic masterpiece.
  • The gate that invites the question, “I wonder what’s inside there?”
  • The secret garden gate.
  • The gate from re-purposed materials.
  • The whimsical gate.

As in most decorating whether inside or out, it seems the only hindrance we bear is our imagination.  The most beautiful gates I have ever seen are in Hawaii.  I love to drive around the island we are visiting and see these beautiful masterpieces. Dolphins, orchids, turtles, birds, suns, waves….wow!  I so wish I was there!  I dream about having a gate like that, even though my dream would need to shrink in size about two thirds.

I would really like two gates; one to say “welcome”, the other to say, “I would rather you use the other gate.”  That’s ok, right?

gate st. george Gate cool design Gate out of garden tools Gate Hawaii dolphins gate out of old door Gate wooden

Amazing Rock Garden Plant Ideas

Beautiful Rock Garden Plant Ideas

Rock Gardens….and my dad’s aching back!

When I was a little girl my parents loved to go for drives and road trips.  One experience that was always included was time spent looking for rocks for my mom’s rock garden.  I don’t mean just little ole’ every day run of the mill rocks; I mean large and very beautiful rocks.  My dad would stop at mom’s “request” and the two rock hounds would march out into some field or wooded area in search of the rock that would inevitably end up under my feet in the back seat of the car.  Fun memories!  WOW!  Would I love to have some of those rocks now.  Included in many were fossils and petrified wood.

Well, we would get home from the trip and next up was (and this still brings a very big smile to my face) mom orchestrating dad around the yard to place the new find in EXACTLY the right spot.  It always took no less than 6-7 moves.  Keep in mind these were very HEAVY souvenirs!   Well anyway, they ended up with a beautiful collection of mini-boulders for a fabulous rock garden.

Unfortunately, however, they planted tams between the rocks rather than beautiful, flowering, creeping ground cover and some well-chosen perennials.  Now, don’t get me wrong, tams have their place, but eventually all these beautiful rocks were completely covered with these evergreen shrubs.  What a waste!  And these bushes claimed many of my tennis balls and badminton birdies as well!

We, too, have some beautiful rocks (which we paid dearly for, by the way, and one reason I would NEVER want to cover them up), and a favorite hobby of mine is to try different flowers/ground covers, etc. to plant in and around these natural sculptures.

Some of my favorites:

  • Basket of Gold Alyssum
  • Creeping Phlox
  • Purple Salvia
  • Ice Plant
  • Soapwort
  • Snow in Summer
  • Lavender
  • Sweet Potato Vine
  • Geraniums
  • Creeping Jenny
  • Mother Hen & Chicks

Although it is still early spring and many of our plants are not in bloom, you can get the idea of what we have done in our yard.  The Basket of Gold is truly one of the showstoppers this time of year.  These are just a few pictures of the rock gardens at my house 🙂

Rock Garden back yard Rock Garden front yard


9 Tips to Growing Fabulous Tulips

9 Tips to Growing Fabulous Tulips

Tulips are a free gift every year!

No matter how tired you are of planting this fall, make sure you create for yourself a tulip garden.  They are a wonderful way to celebrate your efforts of yesteryear.  And no matter how many springs come and go, I am always surprised by the splendor of these florae!

theflowerexpert.com provides these tips on growing tulips:

  • Select the location for planting.
  • Prepare the soil by working it well, removing rocks and weeds.
  • Mix in plenty of organic material and fertilizer.
  • Special bulb formulas and bone meal work best.
  • The Tulips will bloom in almost any soil with a good drainage.
  • When buying Tulip bulbs, select only the finest quality bulbs. In general the bigger the bulb, the bigger the bloom.
  • Follow the directions from the supplier for spacing and depth. If no directions are included, plant the bulbs 6-8″ apart and at a depth twice the diameter of the bulb.
  • After the Tulips bloom, let the plant continue to grow until it dies off. During the post bloom period, the plant sends energy to the bulb to store for use next spring.
  • Tulips require a period of cold while they are dormant and resting between shows.

Some suggest digging up your bulbs after they have bloomed and storing them in a cool dry area for replanting in the fall. NOT ME!  I planted these tulips about 9 years ago and this is the sight from my front window today:

Tulips and front porch

Something I have never considered, is planting them in pots and then storing them in the garage to allow them to winter over and then bringing them out in the spring to place them anywhere you want for that splash of springtime color!  I love this idea!!

tulips in pots

Tulips!  A free gift to me every spring.


Container Gardening

The Best Container Gardening Sites

Hi friends!

I would just like to share with you a great site I found.  It is one of the best I have seen for the types of plants to use in container flower gardening.   Mixed containers, sun containers, part-sun containers, shade containers, perennial containers.  It has every idea for every climate condition you can think of.  I just love finding these treasures and wanted to share the wealth!

This is one you’ll want to bookmark for sure!  Have fun!

Click here for the site!

I know of others I am going to add in a day or so, but thought I would share this great little treasure 🙂  Hope you enjoy it as much as I have!

6 Tips to a Fabulous Dry Creek Bed

DIY Creek Bed ~

6 Tips to a Fabulous DIY Dry Creek Bed (1)

6….okay…..maybe 8 pointers to a magnificent landscape design

If you love the outdoors and want to enjoy the look and “feel” of a beautiful stream, how about a dry creek bed?  The very nature of the term “dry creek bed” can bring to mind a desolate and water-starved scene in the Sahara…NO, NO!   You don’t need the water to suggest its presence in the garden.  If planned correctly and creatively a dry creek bed can look as though there was once rushing water where pebbles and stones were deposited and the lush of foliage remain.