CHM 2014 Garden Tour

My bottle tree

My bottle tree

Carolyn over at Deep Thoughts of a Common Household Mom is hosting a garden tour today. Pop on over to her blog to see a list of all who are participating.

This fountain was at the entrance to my mom's house. The birds enjoy drinking here and so does the cat...  and probably some nocturnal wildlife, too, as evidenced by the occasional footprints. 

This fountain was originally at the entrance to my mom’s house and now sits by my own front door. The birds enjoy drinking here and so does the cat… and probably some nocturnal wildlife, too, as evidenced by the occasional footprints.

My confession: I am not a gardener. I keep the Christmas Cactus plants very happy indoors, but it is my husband who puts 90% of the work into our yard. I like to tell him what I think will look good and sometimes he listens to my ideas.  My theory is that when I was young, all of us kids were forced into slave labor weeding and I was scarred by the slugs and bird droppings.  I like the idea of gardening but not the sweaty, tedious work that goes into it. Weeding the garden is a lot like cleaning the bathroom or the kitchen — an hour later, it hardly looks like I did anything to clean it up. Also, if I’m down on the ground too long I have trouble getting back up again.

But never mind all that…

Clockwise from top right: small rose bush, strawberry patch, back garden with baby hydrangeas, iris, columbine and tulips

Clockwise from top right: young, small rose bush; older strawberry patch;  back garden abundant with baby hydrangeas, iris, columbine and tulips


My friend ~A~ has been very generous with us and given us bulbs and plants from her own yard, since we moved into this house 3 years ago to discover we had almost no flowers in the garden.  All of my iris bulbs, the columbine, lilies, daisies, and more came from her garden. She even bought a purple-flowered butterfly bush as a gift for us, so in a way our garden is half hers.  I remind her of this when we are overwhelmed with squash and zucchini.

499 Garden sweet pea blossoms, June 2013

the peas in bloom

Mmmm... good for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!

Mmmm… good for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!

The above pictures taken over the past few months (or even the past few springs… I hope you’re not picky).  Parts of our garden are much prettier in springtime than in the heat of mid-summer.

Right now we are in vegetable garden season: peas, beans, zucchini, squash, tomatoes (as of yet, still in bud or green orbs) and sunflowers. We have 2 raised beds in the backyard, stretches of garden area along the fence and house in back, and another garden patch between the driveway and alley on the side of the house.

DSCN3759  resized for web sharing

The birds will be happy well into the winter with another good crop of sunflowers this year.

The most current event happening in our garden is a new fence. The old fence was about to fall over in places, so piece by piece and section by section, SuperDad is building a new (taller! prettier!) fence for us.  Right now there are 3 new sections in various stages of being ready to join the standing section pictured below. Our temps are reaching for 100°F here this weekend so it is hot, slow work.

DSCN3755 new fence section

A few raspberry brambles have made their way under and through the old fence from the neighbors’ yard. These meager branches have provided us with a handful of berries. And then, a few days ago,  we noticed that the house across the street had a profusion of raspberries in the back garden, so we called up the owner and asked if she needed help picking (and eating) them. SCORE!  We’ve picked and enjoyed nearly a gallon of red deliciousness since then.

DSCN3752  Lavender, cropped pic 4x6I posted a few days ago about my lavender, which has grown quite nicely from the small mound I lovingly planted in front of my kitchen window.  (Surprise! I actually do a little bit of gardening.) Some of that lavender might just go into the making of gifts, such as lavender sugar or lavender sugar scrubs or perhaps even a sachet or two. We’ll have to wait and see how crafty I am feeling this fall.

In another month we’ll be in high season for squash and zucchini. We might go a little overboard with those each year (if you’ve never read that zucchini post, you really ought to click on that link) but they are so good!  I should go thaw the rest of the shredded zucchini from last year and bake up a few batches of bread before we become inundated once more.