Thursday, May 31, 2007

Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Every summer I say I'm done putting in gardens and by the next spring a new plan is hatched! This year is no exception. I found out at a family wedding that one of my cousin's sons was doing landscape work when he's home from college. I called early and I was number 2 on the list. He called Monday night and said he'd be here Tuesday at 7am! Believe me I asked if I had heard right! A college kid working at 7am the day after a holiday?
I've been thinking about enlarging this middle bed for awhile. This year my foxgloves (They are just beginning to open. I'm hoping for blooms by"Green Thumb Sunday)are spilling out of their place so I needed to do something.
I also decided to do something with my part of this hill. This is the side of the house that has this view most of the time.
A. not only showed up at 7, by 11:30 he was done removing sod and planting bushes. There is not an easy access to my back yard so he used a wheel barrow up hill and put it in the driveway. Then he went home for lunch and came back with his Grandpa's truck. He loaded all the sod into the truck and then had to unload it!
I had him do this little spot too as it's hard to mow. I moved some of what's on the right side to the left.
A also dug up the butterfly bush on the left and moved the bush next to the clematis to where the butterfly bush was.
Then he dug up this raspberry spirea. I stuck it back there several years ago when I didn't know where else to put it.
The bush on the top left is a burning bush and it was already there. Below it is the spirea. In the middle is a small forsythia that was left in the shade garden. At the bottom is the butterfly bush.
Today A brought a load of top soil and used the wheel barrow to add top soil to both areas.
I went out this afternoon and planted a couple hosta . I'm using burgundy glow ajuga instead of mulch because of the hill. I dug up 2 flats full from under a rose of sharon in the middle bed. I'm not sure what else I'll do here. I didn't put the ajuga all the way down until I decide what to do at the bottom. I don't want to have to weed so everything has to be low maintenance here.
A said he worked 8 hours and he only charges $10. per hour. I gave him a good "tip", believe me. I had all the plants so all it cost was the labor and top soil. It's a good thing because I can't wait to go shopping for the middle garden!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Estate sale find.

I was coming home from a quick trip to the store Friday when I passed an estate sale sign. Naturally, I had to check it out on the way home. They were pretty well cleaned out but I spotted a glass bi fold door that was interesting. They lowered the price from $18. to $8.00 so I grabbed it.
I dragged it in the house and out onto the deck. It was quite heavy. It was a little new looking for me so I sanded it down. See the lines in the glass? It's all one sheet of glass but the lines are made by beveling the edges. I really love that detail.
Then I added some stain to tone down the paint color.
Next, I added eyehooks and some heavy wire and clamps.
Then I put hooks in the ceiling.
When the kids came over I asked the guys to hang it for me. They really didn't have much choice since it was on the table so they couldn't eat until they hung it. I know they all think my ideas are pretty weird sometimes but they kept it to themselves very well!
I think it's cool! I know it's clear glass but it makes me feel I have a little more privacy from my "neighbors from hell". I was looking for some old windows during city cleanup to hang on this end of the deck. I drove around until I was almost car sick and gave up.
I hung it off center because of the grill. Now I'm looking for a regular size one to hang higher over the grill. I have a wisteria vine that was growing on the deck rail so I'll train some of that to grow around the window.So, what do you think? You can be honest. I know my ideas aren't for everyone but that's what makes life interesting!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day

I trust that each one of you will have a great day of remembrance and fellowship with family and friends.

Thank you to all those who have served and continue to serve for our freedom. A special thanks to the families of those who gave their lives for our great country!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Pinks and purples.

Welcome to my garden. I seem to have a lot of pinks and purples in bloom this week.
One of my cranesbill geranium. I love these plants and have several colors. They mound and fill out very nice and have interesting leaves. There are always plenty of pass-along plants because the do spread quite easily.
I like the combination of the allium with the purple mullein. Most of my mulleins are softer colors but this purple is quite strong.
There are still lots of buds on this thrift. I have it as a border in my middle garden and I have a hard time keeping the grass from growing in it. I dug it all out last year and removed grass but some is back. I'm expanding this garden this year so I'll put something else between it and the grass.
Pink and purple wild columbine and purple iris on the side of my neighbors garage. I thinned the Iris last year and have many more blooms this year.
Soapwort spilling from an old milk pail.
The best show right now is an azalea and clematis by the shed. This is a twice blooming clematis. The azalea came with the house but this is the third or forth place it has been and it's really doing well here.
I'm off to the garden. We had some rain yesterday so weeding and thinning should be a little easier.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Saturday stuff

I love this country angel in my garden. If you look close (click to enlarge) you can see she has chicken wire wings and has "Bless my Blossoms" written across the bottom. I used to have her in the garden beside the shop stairs. I had to call my plumber and when he walked in he said he had to stop and take a closer look at my angel. Seems at first glance he thought it said "Bless my Bossoms" and he figured that couldn't be right!

Awhile ago I wrote a post about ajuga and how my cousins husband said it would be fun to play with toy soldiers because the flowers would be perfect trees. I gave him a package of toy soldiers for his wedding gift and I said I was sure when no one was around he was playing with them. They say a picture is worth a thousand words so I give you this.It's a little blurry but I'm sure you can figure out what is going on!

I got a pretty cool website the other day and thought you might like to check it out. I tells you the number one song the day you were born or any other day that is special to you.

The number one song the day I was born was "Riders in the Sky (A Cowboy Legend)" by Vaughn Monroe. What was yours?

Friday, May 25, 2007

Lucy-Desi Days

I wrote this post on Feb. 28 of this year. Since we're having Lucy Desi Days here in the town Lucy was born in I thought I would rerun it for any new readers I have.
Celebrity connections
I've been thinking about this series of posts for awhile and decided that this is a good time. Everyone seems so bored and it is hard to come up with a post that isn't about snow.
Let me first say that I am not impressed with celebrity. I do not like a person because of who they know. I am not a "fan" of anybody special. I like several TV shows but I am not interested in meeting the stars. I would rather sit at home and watch a concert on TV. I have had a few customers with "celebrity" connections in the past and they do make interesting stories. One of my favorite weekly customers' son-in-law discovered AIDS and was Rock Hudson's doctor. Another's daughter worked for Jim Hansen and the Muppets and her son is an accomplished artist. When I went to her 75th birthday party I met a lady who later was written about in People Magazine.
I have a good friend, Lloyd, who also has a "celebrity connection". Can you guess who he's connected to by the way he's dressed?

You're right! He has a connection to Lucy! I have really enjoyed this connection even though I am not a major fan. I know you FANS are going to be upset that this is wasted on me but I will be sharing pictures and stories with you about this connection.
Do you have any guesses as to what Lloyd's connection to Lucy is? Leave your ideas in the comments. I'll let you know tomorrow!

I wrote a series of posts on this subject starting on the first of March. If you are interested in this series just click on March 2007 in the archives on the right and scroll to the bottom. To read the series in order you will have to scroll up.
We also have a celebration here the first week of August for Lucy's birthday.
If you are interested in learning more click here.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Sweet dill pickles

It's picnic season so I know I better have some of my "homemade" sweet dill pickles in the frig at all times. My kids all love them.
First I buy a jar of cheap whole dill pickles. I was told to use whole pickles so that's what I do. I've never tried sliced ones.
Pour off the juice and cut the pickles into slices.
Cover completely with sugar. Shake it down so it covers all the slices .
Cover and stick in the frig for a couple weeks and until the sugar is dissolved. You can tip it upside down a couple times during that time.
Now tell everyone that they are your "homemade" sweet dill pickles! If you like sweet pickles you will love them.
Bring on the hot dogs, hamburgs and potatoe salad! I'm all ready for a picnic!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Volunteers are something I have a lot of! See all these pretty blue bachelor buttons? They all volunteered. I started with one clump from a friend and now I have them everywhere! The light blue flowers are forget-me-nots and I never planted one! My problem is the minute I decide to pull them out and get rid of them someone will say they wish they had some and I won't have any left to give them. I hate waste!
This gravel stairway has been here for almost 20 years. The dirt is like cement but look here! There is feverfew, toadflax and violets all volunteering in the path. If I tried to grow something here it would never grow.
Here are a pink and a purple wild columbine, white violets and the wild strawberries I mentioned before all growing in hard packed gravel.
This is another clump of bachelor buttons.
More Bachelor buttons and columbine.
This is a favorite of mine but I didn't plant it here. It's a Japanese anemone and I dug them all out a couple years ago. I moved some and gave some away. I know I'm getting old and forgetful but I'm sure I didn't plant one here!
I really do love my volunteers. The only problem is when they plant themselves in these conditions I can't really share them because I can't dig the roots up. How about you, do you love or hate your volunteers? Do you pull them out when they are small so you won't feel guilty about throwing away plants? Could you possibly be one of those heartless people who wants everything perfect and considers any plant growing where you don't want it a weed? Does anyone out there need any bachelor buttons?

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


I didn't have Jerzie yesterday so I went to 4 nurseries shopping for annuals. I wouldn't even let myself look at perennials! As you can see I did pretty well. I went out first thing this morning and started planting. This shepherds hook is in the front of the house behind my holly bush.
These are the only annuals I put in the ground. I try to keep this garden red, white and blue. I use white allyssum and blue annuals every year. I also found some really red dianthus this year. I might come up every year.
This is out in the back yard.
I call this large garden my kitchen garden. There are lavender wave petunias in this gray speckled enamelware strainer.

More wave petunias in an enamelware coffee pot sitting on an old metal kitchen stool.
Another enamelware strainer. This one is yellow and green and has licorice plant and johnny jump ups. I also hung my egg beater wind chime in this garden.
An old copper boiler with variegated sweet potato vine and burgundy and pink dahlias. I love the green patina of this old pot.
On to the deck. This is one of the planters I sprayed to look like stone. There are more lavender wave petunias in these. The lacy pansies pull all the colors together.
I love the coral color and even tho it isn't in the furniture I put coral impatience on the table.

This pot was terra cotta and I sprayed it with the stone paint to. I really like this hanger.
The old soup kettle from camp with coral impatiences and an iron angel candle holder.

Now all I have to do is remember to water and I will soon have some nice full plantings.