Coping With A Sloped Garden

My very first garden had a serious slope that ran from the street down to the house.  At the time, I was so new to gardening that I didn’t realize what I was getting into.  But, after much trial and error, I learned that sloping properties are little micro climates unto themselves.  They have special needs.  So I was happy to see this post, brought to me by a guest writer, that addresses ways to work with sloped gardens.

The following is a contributed post.  For more on my contributed posts, please see this page.

Coping With A Sloped Garden

Sloped gardens often come with unique challenges.  One major issue can be water runoff:  Water traveling downhill, instead of absorbing into the soil, can leave sloped areas too dry.  Meanwhile, the area at the bottom of the slope, where the water collects, becomes boggy.  Water runoff and wind can also cause soil erosion.  And placing garden structures or outdoor furniture on a slope can be a challenge.  

Fortunately, there are ways to make a sloped garden more manageable. Below are just a few suggestions for making good use of your sloped garden.

Level it

You may be able to flatten out or fill in your sloped garden by getting it levelled. This can be quite expensive if you’ve got a large garden and may not be practical if the slope is quite steep. However, when it comes to small gardens with gradual slopes, it could be a good solution.

Create A Tiered Garden

Another option for a sloped garden could be to divide it into stepped tiers. In most cases, creating multiple levels of flat sections is more practical than levelling the entire garden. 

You could dedicate each tier to a different purpose. For instance, there could be a tier dedicated to a patio area, a tier for your lawn and general plants, and possibly a tier for a vegetable patch. Excavation companies such as Rock On Walls and Falls can help you to build these tiers. Between each tier, you could add stairs and stylish retaining walls.

You may even be able to add features like multi-tiered ponds with waterfalls.

Build A Raised Deck

You may be able to build a raised deck over part of your sloped garden. This could give you a flat area for socializing in your garden without having to do any excavation work. A raised deck is more affordable than a raised patio.  Just be sure to consider property boundaries and setbacks, and expect to deal with issues such as permits and planning permission. 

More information on building a raised deck can be found in this post by BuildDirect

Embrace The Slope

You don’t have to build decks or flatten out areas of your garden. Instead you could embrace the slope.  This approach is all about working in partnership with the land instead of trying to conquer it.

Start by observing the dynamics of the area:  Where water is traveling and where it ends up, which locations are sunny and which are shady, which plants are thriving and which are not, where opportunities for viewpoints might be – or areas you might carve out for private garden “rooms.”  Before adding features, be sure to identify any issues with the area, such as soil erosion, that you might need to keep in mind or address.

Some plants are able to grow well on slopes. Such plants can often survive in relatively dry soil and take punishment from the wind. You could try to incorporate these plants into your garden.

Think of features that you can add to enhance and make use of the slope. One option could be to have a long winding path or staircase leading down your garden – possibly with small levelled sections or platforms along the way. You could also find ways to direct water down your garden in a stylish manner, such as using rocks to create a waterfall. Just make sure to have a plan for where that water will end up (perhaps in an attractive pond) so that you don’t flood your area or create flooding problems in a neighbor’s garden. 

Working with the dynamics already present in your garden is also a great way to keep the local wildlife happy and create your own nature sanctuary.

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

SIMPLE SPRING  HOME REFRESH IDEAS

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

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A Saucer Filled With Spring

After a long winter, I crave the colors and fragrances of spring.  But I don’t necessarily want to go out in the rain to find them.  I want them inside where it’s easier to enjoy them.

It seems I’m always trying to bring the outdoors inside (in appearance anyway – minus any little worms or bugs).

One year, it was elevated tulips.

Another time, plants in DIY moss pouches.

But this time, I kept it very simple.

Materials

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I started with some very common bulbs in 4-inch pots:  Hyacinths and tête-à-tête daffodils.

I used a 14-inch glazed clay saucer that was about 2 inches deep.  Why this saucer?  Mostly because I had it on hand, and it was big and could hold many bulbs.

I also used decorative pebbles and potting soil in this project.

Making The Bulbs Fit The Saucer

Of course, the saucer was much more shallow than the pots that the bulbs were in.  I just carefully removed each bulb from its pot (and, since there were several daffodils in one pot, I carefully separated them) and shook away the excess dirt.

Then I placed the bulbs in the saucer and gently spread each plant’s roots around its bulb instead of underneath it.

I didn’t add much soil to the saucer as I did this.

But, once the bulbs were all in place, I carefully packed soil on top of the roots, creating a very slight mound at the center.

The tops of the bulbs were still showing, but to me that was part of the charm. I brushed the dirt from the exposed bulbs, added a few decorative pebbles, and watered them.

 

 

Just to make this little scene look more natural, I added a few fronds from my Himalayan maidenhair fern.  I just pushed them into the soil to make them look like a small fern plant.

How long would these fronds stay fresh?  Not long, I found out.  They dried in a couple of days.  But even dry they are still green so, as of this writing, they are still in this saucer.

Since the saucer has some hairline cracks, I placed it on a cork mat once I brought it inside so it wouldn’t leave any water stains on the table.

It is in a location where it gets light from two large windows.

 

The Result

Apparently, the bulbs don’t mind being planted in a shallow saucer (although I wouldn’t recommend using such a shallow container for outdoor use  in freezing temperatures).

Spring bulbs usually bloom faster indoors.  And, in this bright location, it only took a few days for them to start blooming.

I am very happy with this cheerful and fragrant little spring display.

Of course, the downside is that these bulbs will finish blooming and start to fade faster than they would outdoors.  But, once they are finished blooming, I’ll remove the bulbs and plant them in my garden so they can bloom again next spring.

Until then, I’m enjoying my saucer filled with spring.

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

SIMPLE SPRING  HOME REFRESH IDEAS

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

Want to see more? Browse my photo gallery or check out these categories:

Our Kitchen Remodel Series
Our Master Bath Remodel Series
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5 Ideas To Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal

I love to walk nice neighborhoods and get inspiration from the beautiful homes that I see.  Looking at them always gets me thinking of ways to improve my own home’s curb appeal.  Sometimes small changes can make a huge difference – like rerouting a front walkway to enhance a home’s symmetry.  Or adding window shutters to give a home a more traditional vibe.

So I thought it would be fun to share this post, brought to me by a guest writer, with a few more suggestions for adding curb appeal to our properties.

The following is a contributed post. For more information on my contributed posts, please see this page.

5 Ideas To Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Do you ever look at the front of your home and wonder what steps you can take to improve it? Your home’s curb appeal is important for a variety of reasons. It is the all-important first impression that neighbors and guests have of your home.  And, if you’re thinking of selling, curb appeal is a crucial element in attracting buyers.  After all, if the street view of your house is not appealing, many potential buyers won’t bother coming inside to see the rest of it.

Here are some of the best ways to add curb appeal to your home. 

1. Define The Property With A Border

Adding a border to your property in the form of an attractive fence or retaining wall can help define the boundaries of your property and make it look neat and contained.  Even doing something as simple as placing stones around the edge of your property can make a difference.

Believe it or not, this can have a tremendous impact and catch the attention of anyone looking at your home. It gives your home a little more texture and character too. You’ll just need to make sure that you are taking the right steps to maintain the border and keep it tidy and weed free. 

2.  Add More Color

Consider adding more color to your home exterior. One of the ways to do this is to add some tropical plants around the outside of your home. Seek out plants with unique texture and color.  If you research online, you’ll find that certain tropical plants will grow in a variety of climates, including colder temperatures.  

 

Front doors are important too.  Add a coat of fresh paint to your front door in an eye-catching color and then choose plants and flowers that coordinate with the door color.  If you are planning to sell your home, it pays to research currently popular color themes and choose colors that are likely to appeal to most buyers.

3.  Choose A Unique Feature

A water feature can create a wonderful aesthetic in your garden. Some water features, such as terraced ponds, can be quite expensive to install and maintain.  Yet they are very rewarding.  Others, like birdbaths and small fountains, are much easier to create and care for.  Just do the research and be honest with yourself about how much time and money you are prepared to devote to a water feature.  

Other features, such as trellises, oversized pots, statues, and gazebos, can also add impact and character to your garden.

4.  Improve The Driveway 

Next, you might want to think about improving your property’s driveway. The driveway takes up a massive surface area of the property, so it does make sense to focus on this. You might also find that your driveway has seen better days. Perhaps there are a few cracks and potholes due to extended use. If that’s the case, then a repair could be the right decision. Alternatively, you could opt for a brand new driveway. 

Your options here aren’t as limited as you might think. You can make a lot of fantastic changes depending on the material that you use. For instance, you could use river rock to create a mosaic. If you’re not sure how to achieve this type of effect, speak to a contractor. They should be able to help you with the right choices here. Be aware that you still need to think practically. The driveway has to be strong enough for both cars and foot traffic. 

5.  Improve The Garage Door

Perhaps even more so than front doors, garage doors make an important first impression with your home.  You might think that garage door options are limited, but actually there are many design options available.  And adding a system so that your garage door opens automatically will make your home look like a contemporary dream. 

We hope this helps you understand some of the best ways that you can improve the curb appeal of your home. By taking these steps, you can have a tremendous impact on the value of your property and the impression that it makes on anyone who comes to see it. 

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

Want to see more? Browse my photo gallery or check out these categories:

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Four Essential Tasks For Your Lawn Care Calendar

I’m starting to set a few gardening goals for the year ahead, and one area that I’d like to improve on a bit is lawn care.  We do try to keep our lawn care natural, removing weeds by hand rather than using chemicals.  But it’s been years since we’ve aerated our lawn, and that task alone can make it so much healthier.

So I was happy to see this post, sent to me by a guest writer, with lawn care tasks to add to our garden maintenance calendars.

The following is a contributed post.  For more on my contributed posts, please see this page.

Four Essential Tasks For Your Lawn Care Calendar

A lush green lawn can be a wonderful place to enjoy family activities.  But keeping your lawn green and healthy requires more care than you might think. You need to mow it during the growing season and water it in the summer, but what else does your lawn require to keep it looking good?

At different times of the year, there are certain jobs that you should be doing if you want your lawn to be as healthy as possible. The weather and the temperature can affect the state of your lawn, so you have to be careful about the way that you’re treating it. Here are some key tasks to add to your lawn care calendar to keep it green.

Mowing

Mowing your lawn keeps it the right length so it looks good and the grass grows healthy. During the winter months, you probably won’t be mowing your lawn, but by spring it will be time to get the mower out again.

When you first start cutting your lawn, only give it a small trim to help get the growth going. As spring progresses into summer, you might find that you need to mow the grass more frequently if you want to keep it the right length. You can lower the cutting height of your mower as the grass begins to grow more.

Fertilizing and Seeding

Giving your lawn a helping hand to grow is smart, especially if your lawn has bare patches.  After you’ve started mowing your lawn at the beginning of spring, you might want to consider a fertilizer to promote growth. Spring can also be a good time to overseed your lawn to fill in any bare patches.

Continuing to apply fertilizer in late spring and early summer will help your lawn to be healthier as growth picks up and you need to start caring for the grass more. If the weather becomes dry or hot, watering your lawn might also be necessary.

Aerating

A compacted surface can mean your lawn isn’t getting the nutrients or moisture that it needs. Aerating your lawn prevents the soil from becoming compacted.  You should start thinking about this task in the summer if the surface soil under your lawn is hard, and you might continue to do it throughout the summer. If it feels like a bit too much work, you can get someone else to do it for you. The cost of lawn aeration is well worth it if it’s going to save you a lot of time, especially if you have a larger lawn. It also means you don’t have to have your own aeration tools.

Weeding and Debris Clearing

Weeds and debris on your lawn can prevent it from thriving. Make sure you pay attention to weeds as your lawn starts to grow in the spring so you can remove them. Weed killers can be used, but keep in mind that your family, pets, and wildlife will be using the lawn.  So look for products that will be kind to your lawn and the environment.  

As leaves start to fall later in the year, you should be clearing them from your lawn. Any debris piling up can cause health problems for your grass.

Keep up with your lawn care throughout the year by putting these essential tasks on your calendar.

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

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Turning Your Garden Into A Wildlife Sanctuary

I like to do whatever I can to make my garden a friendly place for our local wildlife.  Surprisingly, this doesn’t really seem to add to my gardening workload, it just creates a slightly different kind of workload.  The reward is a healthy, vibrant garden that everyone can enjoy – even the butterflies.

So I was happy to see this post, written by a guest writer, with a few tips for making our gardens wildlife-friendly.

The following is a contributed post.  For more on my contributed posts, please see this page.

Turning Your Garden Into A Wildlife Sanctuary

Gardening for wildlife is a trend that is becoming increasingly popular as more people are discovering the impact that their gardens have on local wildlife.

It’s easier than you might think to transform your garden into a healthier part of your local ecosystem. Here, we’re going to look at some ways that you can support your local biodiversity.

Go Wild

If you’re not too fond of spending days out in the garden keeping it nice and neat, then one easy gardening tip you could follow is to let it get a little more untamed. Rather than planting exotic flowers that need plenty of care and attention, you could instead simply spread a pack of local mixed wildflower seeds. Aside from being easy to care for since they’re suited to your climate, they’re also great supporters of the local species of pollinators. These pollinators support all plant life, so it is crucial we all pitch in to help them.

Welcome Our Winged Guests

There are few things quite as satisfying as seeing a red-breasted robin hopping along your garden fence or waking up to songbirds in the air. However, you’re not going to find many of them near your home unless you give them a reason to stop by. Bird feeders are a great start, but birds tend to stop longer where there are safe sources of water, so you can attract them if you learn how to make a DIY bird bath . Keeping the water elevated keeps ground pests like rats from taking advantage, too.

Give Them A Place To Stop

Local flowers can attract all manner of pollinators to your garden, but not all pollinators have hives to return to. Solitary bees are a lot more common than you might think and, though they do play an important role in pollinating, they’re not as likely to come to your garden unless you have a place for them to stay. You can provide just the place they need by building your own bee hotel. These are specially made structures that can essentially give them a safe place to winter and build their nests.

 

Multi-Task With A Compost Bin

You might already be aware of just how making your own DIY compost bin can help you take better care of your plants, but did you know that they’re great for local critters as well? Part of the composting process relies on things like worms and insect larvae that eat the organic matter and leave behind compost as waste. These prey creatures then attract things like birds, hedgehogs, and frogs that will keep coming back for the food. Just make sure to position it far enough from your house so that you don’t find yourself with some new house guests.

Humans use a lot of space for their gardens. That’s space that we have taken from local ecosystems, so there are some who believe that we have a responsibility to give back in what small ways we can. If you’re of that belief, the above tips could help you.

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

Want to see more? Browse my photo gallery or check out these categories:

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5 Ideas For Making Your Back Yard More Enjoyable

Hopefully some day in the not-too-distant future, we will be able to safely enjoy outdoor entertaining again in our back yards.  But in the meantime, many of us are using our back yards as safe and peaceful havens.

This post, brought to me by a guest writer, has some excellent suggestions for making our back yards more enjoyable for entertaining – and for ourselves.

The following is a contributed post.  For more on my contributed posts, please see this page.

5 Ideas For Making Your Back Yard More Enjoyable

There’s no denying that most people enjoy spending time outdoors during the warmer months of the year. The summer months are excellent for hosting social events like barbecues, pool parties, and more.  

Your home’s back yard can also be an excellent place to simply relax, unwind, and enjoy some solitude from the world. But what if your back yard needs a little improvement?

Check out these inspirational ideas to get you started:

1. Gazebo

While it’s great to soak up the sun during the warmer months of the year, you’ll still wish to have some shade during the hottest days. One way to achieve that goal and simultaneously make your garden Insta-worthy is by getting a gazebo installed.

You can have a freestanding gazebo near your house or in the middle of your garden. Or, you might want a gazebo attached to one of your garden walls. Apart from providing shade from the sun, gazebos are good shelters during sudden showers on a summer’s day.

2. Swimming Pool

If you have a large garden, you might balk at the thought of having to maintain it all. What if there were a way to cut down on the amount of lawn you’d need to maintain while also providing a place to frolic and enjoy social time with your family and friends?

The solution, of course, is a swimming pool. Your new pool design can incorporate any kind of layout that meets your needs. You could even include a separate spa area.

3. Deck

Do you wish you had an area outside your back door that was level, aesthetically pleasing, and suitably sized for outdoor furniture? If the answer is yes, you should consider having a decked area installed.

A deck is typically made from treated timber and is sometimes known as “decking.” You can further beautify your deck area with recessed LED lights, some charming plants and flowers in pots, and even a pergola.

4. Hot Tub

If a swimming pool isn’t something you’d use enough, perhaps what you should instead consider is having a hot tub installed. Hot tubs allow people to relax and unwind, and some models with powerful jets (i.e., Jacuzzis) that will even massage your body as you sit in them.

Did you know that you can use hot tubs throughout the year – not just in the summer months? It might seem like a strange concept, but it can be great relaxing in a hot tub and enjoying a clear sky in winter! 

5. Playsets and Play Houses

If the kids are happy, the adults are happy. And then everyone has a good time. 

You could have a natural wood playset installed in your back yard and incorporate a treehouse. Consider what your child’s changing needs might be as the years progress – and perhaps even consider how, after your child outgrows it, you might be able to repurpose that play house into something you can use for yourself.

Playsets come in various configurations; the only things that might limit what you can do are your imagination and your budget!

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

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Garden Planning and Dreaming

Happy New Year, dear readers!  Where we live, early January can be dark and dreary – which makes it an excellent time for setting plans for the year ahead – and for dreaming.

This year, I will be reworking a large planting area in our garden, and I’m excited about the possibilities.

I tend to be drawn to traditional English garden designs – especially those that balance the informal look of perennials with the structure of hardscaping, hedges, and potted topiaries.

One garden I really love is Butchart Gardens near Victoria, B.C., which my Mom and I visited a few years ago.  I took lots of photos, and recently I’ve been scrolling through them to get design ideas.

So I thought I’d take you there with me now.  Are you ready to escape reality for a while?  Grab a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, and prepare to be magically transported to spring!

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A Stroll Through A Beautiful Spring Garden

 

Butchart Gardens

Of course, Butchart Gardens is a much grander scale than the space that I am redoing, but I can still look to it for inspiration.

For its hardscaping – which provides year-round structure and interest,

Butchart Gardens

 

Butchart Gardens

 

Butchart Gardens

Its serene water features,

Butchart Gardens

 

 

Butchart Gardens

The spectacular use of color,

Tulips

 

Butchart Gardens

 

Butchart Gardens

 

Butchart Gardens

And the sheer abundance and scale of the place.

Butchart Gardens

 

Butchart Gardens

This is not a garden to hurry through, because sometimes the beauty is hiding the smallest details.

 

Blooming spring bulbs adorned the garden when we visited, but I have no doubt that, once they faded, something equally spectacular took their place.

But now it’s time to travel back to reality and talk about . . .

When Good Gardens Go Bad

I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with this planting area in my back yard.  It looked harmless enough in spring and early summer.  And, being in full sun, it was well located.

garden planning

So every year I fooled myself into believing that this would be the year it would stay manageable.

But, no matter how hard I tried, by summer’s end it always looked like this,

with drifts of overly prolific plants fiercely competing for space.

Obviously, plants thrive in this area.  And, to a point, I did appreciate their exuberance (especially the Joe Pye) and the fact that the bees liked them so much. By fall and winter, the area always looked terrible, but I left it alone because the seed heads from the perennials were a natural food source for the birds.

But in gardening, there is a thin line between charm and chaos.  And this area had crossed that line.  Things were out of control, and it was bringing me despair instead of happiness.

This past fall, I finally started to do something about it.

 

Taming The Beast

This past fall, we had a feeding station set up for the birds.  So I didn’t feel bad about cutting all those gangly perennials down to the ground.

Once they were cut back, we hired a landscape crew to dig up every plant in that area except the boxwood hedge and the madrona shrub.  (You can see the madrona’s twisted red bark to the far left in the photo below.)

You can also kind of see from the photo that this area is vaguely in the shape of a heart – which I never noticed until it was cleared out.

The crew even removed and replaced the stone border to get at plant roots under the stones.  Their truck was piled high with plant roots by the time they were finished.

Then I covered the soil with leaf mulch that Chris had made by mowing over leaves with the lawnmower.  (He does this every fall, and I use the mulch in various planting beds.)

garden planning

It doesn’t take long for this leaf mulch to break down, but it will hopefully prevent soil erosion over the winter, inhibit weed growth, and add natural nutrients to the soil.

One caveat to creating your own leaf mulch is that not all leaves are beneficial to the garden.  And diseased leaves should never be used.  So it’s always good to do a little research first.

Design Goals

The planting area will sit vacant until spring.  But, so far, my goals are:

  • Make it bee-friendly and bird-friendly again – but not so crazy crowded;
  • And this time, do a better job of containing it and giving the area more structure – perhaps by extending the short boxwood hedge;
  • Plant for a succession of blooms and color from early spring into fall; and
  • Have some kind of statuary piece or large piece of garden art as a central focal point.

Right now I’m thinking of something similar to this (please disregard the house in the background, which I am not tech savvy enough to get rid of).

This is just a rough draft and isn’t even to scale for my planting area.  No doubt the plan will be tweaked many times before the project is actually completed.  I may include some ornamental herbs or vegetables.

And it’s highly unlikely that I will end up with such a fancy fountain as the centerpiece.  I may even try to salvage the decaying planter and base that is there now.

But for now, it’s fun to plan and dream.

Books On English Gardens

These books look like wonderful sources of inspiration.

      

 

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

Want to see more? Browse my photo gallery or check out these categories:

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An Easy DIY Lemon Cypress Wreath

Ever since I made my all-natural, fully compostable fall wreath last year, I’ve been sold on making simple hand-formed wreaths using natural ingredients from my own garden.

They are surprisingly easy to make, and recently I made a winter wreath using this technique.

A DIY Lemon Cypress Wreath

Disclosure: Affiliate links are used below.  For more on my affiliate links, please see this page.

For my wreaths, I just use trimmings from my garden – plants and vines that I am cutting back anyway.

The Foundation

I still had a few grapevines in my garden that needed pruning.  Most of the vines were a bit brittle by this point, but I found a few bendable ones.

So I simply cut the vines to length and carefully bent and wrapped them together, winding them around one another, to make a wreath form.  I tucked the ends in around the vines as I worked to make sure everything was secure.

It didn’t look perfect, but it didn’t have to.  This would just be the wreath’s foundation.

Note:  For those who don’t have grapevines or other suitable vines to work with, pre-made grapevine wreaths are easy to find and relatively inexpensive.

 

The Main Attraction

We have a large lemon cypress (or goldcrest) shrub in our yard.  It started out as a little accent plant in a pot on our patio, and I originally chose it for its lovely, groomed shape, its lemony fragrance, and for its fresh, vibrant shade of green.  I always make sure to have a couple of these beauties in pots on our porch.

Fresh colors really pop against our charcoal-colored door, and this plant needed trimming anyway.  So I saved a small branch for this project.

I cut sprigs of the lemon cypress to the length I wanted and then, starting at the top of the wreath and working my way down one side, I just wedged the ends between the grapevines until they seemed secure. No wires were needed.

If a sprig failed to secure, or if it didn’t look right, I just used a different one.  When I had that side done, I started at the top of the other side and worked my way down.

The lemon cypress draped nicely and was easy to work with.  Soon I had the wreath form filled.  I gave it a few shakes to make sure everything was secure.

I was tempted to leave it just like this:  Understated and all-natural.  But it did need a little something.

 

Accent Pieces

I’ve learned from experience that natural winter berries, at least the ones that I grow in my garden, don’t look good for long.  So I did add one man-made element, which I already had on hand:  Faux berries.

The faux berries are on wired sprigs, but I just covered the wires as best I could with the cypress greenery.

I tried adding a bow and a few other decor pieces, but they just didn’t look right.  Sometimes simpler is better and, since the berries are slightly over-sized for the wreath, they make enough of an impact on their own.

 

Some of the grapevine foundation is still showing in places, and that’s okay.  Unlike a wire wreath form, the grapevines add a rustic interest.

I think the snappy green of the lemon cypress is a fun departure from traditional holiday greens.  This wreath cost me nothing to make, and making it only took about an hour of my time.

Once the season changes, I can easily remove the berry sprigs and then toss this wreath straight into the yard waste  bin.

Here I must admit two things:

One, since I’ve never used lemon cypress in a wreath before, I have no idea how long it will look good.  I will probably mist it from time to time.  My hope is that it will last at least through Christmas.

And two, our front door is in a protected area.  A wreath like this in a different, more weather-exposed environment, may not hold up as well.

More Fun With Wreaths and Lemon Cypress

It’s fun to use old wreaths in new ways.  A few years ago, before I started making wireless wreaths, I made this wreath from birch twigs.

Recently, I trimmed that wreath down to make it more compact.  I used it, along with lemon cypress cuttings and fresh berry sprigs, to create this very simple and natural look for the pillar near our back door.

 

 

Finding Lemon Cypress

Lemon cypress trees can usually be found at better nurseries and garden centers – and from various online sellers, including some on Amazon and Etsy.

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

 

BROWSE MY COLLECTION OF PANDEMIC STOCKING STUFFERS

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

Want to see more? Browse my photo gallery or check out these categories:

Our Kitchen Remodel Series
Our Master Bath Remodel Series
Entertaining
My Dressing Room Remodel
Dan’s Workshop
Decorating and Holidays
Our Little Sunglo Greenhouse
Floral Design
Garden Design
The June Bug Diaries
Our Laundry Room Remodel

 

Exploring

 

Make Your Garden “Insta-Worthy” With These Tips

Being home a bit more than usual these days has made me want to make my home and garden as pleasant and usable as possible.  And it seems that, since many of us can’t gather or travel as we would in normal times, folks are tending to share more of their everyday home lives on social media.

So I thought that this guest post, with tips for creating an “insta-worthy” garden, would be a fun one to share.

The following is a contributed post.  For more on my contributed posts, please see this page.

Make Your Garden “Insta-Worthy” With These Tips

Who doesn’t want a garden that is “insta-worthy” these days? Many of us use social media platforms like instagram to share pictures and updates, and we want our photos to look good – and to convey a certain message.

But how do you create an “insta-worthy” outdoor space?  Here are a few tips for doing just that.

Give It a Good Clear Out

Just like our homes, our gardens can sometimes become cluttered. It’s either random chairs lurking about, kids’ toys, garden tools, or even items destined for the waste center but you just haven’t gotten around to taking them. But once you give your garden a big clearout, you can see what you have to work with.

If you don’t have the time or the vehicle to clear out your garden, then you could consider hiring professionals to do all the hard work for you. 

If you do have things that need to stay in your garden, like lawn mowers or garden tools, then consider investing in a shed so that they have a home. 

Whether you want to take your garden back to its former glory or start fresh with a new garden design, getting your garden in tidy condition is the first step.

Design Your Garden Space

Much like your home’s interior, your garden needs a design concept. Do you want a cottage garden look, with abundant flower beds, hanging baskets or pots on the patios? Or perhaps something more functional-looking, such as a neatened up lawn and a clear decking space? 

Don’t be discouraged if your garden space is small.  It’s amazing how much can be done with even a small space.

Whatever your garden design plan, installing a new fence or deck can serve to define the space and be a backdrop to your flower beds and garden in general. Companies like Austex Fence & Deck could help you with that.

You can even go as far as picking certain colors you want to see more of. This can be reflected in the flowers and plants you choose for your garden. Treat your garden as if it is an extension of your home and watch it flourish.

Consider Adding An Eye-Catching Feature

Garden features are the things that add focus and interest to an outdoor space.  They are also the driving force behind many “insta-worthy” moments.

You may want to think about adding a water element to your garden – which sometimes carries the added benefit of attracting wildlife.

Or you could choose to use a decked area or patio as your feature and invest in some unique garden furniture to make it look extra special – and to make it functional.

Maintain Your Garden

Finally, once everything is in place, keep your garden maintained. This means mowing your lawns and keeping them neat and tidy. 

It’s about keeping your flower beds free of weeds, pruning plants and trees when needed, and brushing patio and decked areas if leaves or debris have fallen.

Once you have everything in place, this work is much easier to keep on top of. 

And then you can begin enjoying – and sharing – your beautiful new garden space.

Posts on this website are for entertainment only and are not tutorials.

BROWSE MY COLLECTION OF PANDEMIC STOCKING STUFFERS

 

Here you’ll find seasonal goodies, my current decor obsessions, and more!

 

Want to see more? Browse my photo gallery or check out these categories:

Our Kitchen Remodel Series
Our Master Bath Remodel Series
Entertaining
My Dressing Room Remodel
Dan’s Workshop
Decorating and Holidays
Our Little Sunglo Greenhouse
Floral Design
Garden Design
The June Bug Diaries
Our Laundry Room Remodel