Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wildlife in the Garden

I had to share another quirky garden illustration from my friend Tres Fromme, Principal, 3.Fromme Design. He always has an interesting perspective.  :) Thanks again Tres!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Paint It

I love paint.  I especially love adding paint in the garden to make furniture and plants pop. Think about how you can use this magic to add vibrancy in your landscape.

These images were taken at the Des Moines Botanical Center a couple of years ago when they had a fun display on color in the garden.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy thanksgiving!

I thought these images by shannonblue photography were perfect to kick-start the holiday season. Be thankful, eat much and crinkle a few leaves.

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Dependable Container Plant

I know that many of you are disassembling your container gardens as we speak, but I came across this image and wanted to share it.  It highlights one of my favorite groups of plants - succulents - perfect for containers. If you like containers, but can't quite remember to water on a regular basis, succulents are your go-to plant.  Place them in something pretty and wa-la!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Trimming Your Garden

I have a passion for garden history.  Exploring the past has always been about trying to unravel a mystery...working with the few clues scattered about.  These clues tell us about how a society viewed the landscape, designed the landscape and lived in their landscape.

These images are one such clue.  A beautiful clay tile with a spiral top.  What were they used for?  In Victorian times, these were used to edge planting beds.  One pushed them in vertically, so the spiral edge showed just above the soil.

Were they functional?  Perhaps.  Maybe they helped retain soil.  Most likely they had an aesthetic create a pretty edge around flower displays.  These may have trimmed a garden, just as ribbon trimmed a pillow or curtain. Victorians often shared indoor textile vocabulary and craft with garden design.

These photos were taken in the Missouri Botanical Garden's Victorian District.  The illustration was found in a book published during the Victorian period.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Clay Flower Pots

I often find myself drawn to the most common garden simple flower pots.  I snapped these images in England a few years ago.  Soil and all, there is always something so beautiful about a functional object.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Gingham Garden

Something I love to do is picking a fun image, color scheme or object to inspire me in designing a garden. It's a great way to generate ideas, yet help narrow down your plant choices.

I found this gingham image above several months ago and have been aching to design a perennial bed based on it. This is a simple border that you can place along a sunny wall or fence. The peak bloom time is June to July.  I'm in zone 4 so have planned it accordingly, but you can take the same principles and design something with plants in your area. Oh, and I chose all my perennials through a fabulous plant database found on the Midwest Groundcovers website.

I know it's getting a little cold to plant now, but it's never too early to plan for spring!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Neighborhood Sheds

Can functional structures like sheds be beautiful too?

As we decorated ours with corn stalks a couple of weeks ago I realized how lucky we were to have such a lovely, vibrant shed in our garden.  I then realized our neighborhood was filled with similar structures...some old, some new, but all stunning. They all store tools (and some even chickens), plus garden ephemera.  Each one has an intriguing beauty.

Rather than build a typical shed in your yard, create a functional masterpiece that becomes an integral component of your garden.

Our fun orange garden shed designed and constructed by my husband.
Our neighbor's garden shed and chicken coop to the east of our house. 
A shaker-like shed and beautiful worn brick a couple of houses to the north.
The oldest and most detailed shed in our neighborhood located just to the northeast. 

A big thanks to all of our neighbors for letting me tromp through your yards, move around your garden tools and allowing me to flip your light switches on and off to take these photos.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011