Friday, March 27, 2015

Bunnies and Garden Journals





It's spring and I'm so excited to be in my garden again.  We aren't  past the last average frost date so I haven't started planting anything in the ground yet.   I did buy a few plants and potted them up in containers which can be easily moved inside if the temperature drops.   




March is the perfect time to start a garden journal.  
I purchased a small (girly) journal at Michaels in the half price bin.  It's the perfect way to keep track of my plants, purchases and future plans.


Here is a picture of one I 've had since 1995!!  It has withstood 20 garden seasons.  It's where I have kept plant labels and valuable information about the plants in my garden.  It's nice to go back and look at what variety of rose or clematis I planted.    The horticulture department at OSU sold these and it includes growing information specific to Oklahoma for each month.   OSU also produces a weekly show on gardening that can be viewed on You tube.


I would be lost without my trusty old garden journal and it's bursting at the seams and that's what prompted me to buy a new and "girlier" one for garden season.   


These are the plant tags from last year that I need to
 file in my new journal.   Most of these plants were purchased late in the summer when nurseries and garden centers  discount their stock significantly.  I have landscaped my yard with many "fixer-upper" plants and after one season they look great and the savings is at least 50-75%.      


I also write down when butterflies, cardinals and hummingbirds arrive each year so I know when to start looking for them so I can put up feeders. 


I jot down garden plans and chores for each month.  When I purchase plants I staple the plant tags on the pages so I can remember how to care for any new plant varieties I try. 


 I also write down where I purchased the plant as well.  I've even kept a envelope with receipts for new plants I've not grown before because most nurseries have a one year guarantee on their plants.  


If I go to the effort of taking care of something all year and it is labeled for my zone then I don't feel bad when I take it back for a refund or store credit if it dies. 
I think it also allows the nurserymen to know what not to order next year so we don't waste our time growing something that isn't appropriate for our zone.     


You can get really fancy with your journals with pretty stickers on the pages too.  I think Susan Branch's garden journals are the most beautiful! I had received the Susan Branch garden journal as a gift several years ago and it came with extra garden stickers.   Since I've purchased a new journal I thought this would be the 
perfect place to use them. 


 Susan Branch's journal is more of a scrapbook and photo album of my garden than a day to day journal.   I think it's out of print now and if she ever reprints them they are the perfect gift for any gardener! 


 I just love all her works.  The quote on the cover says
 "God has given us our memories that we might
 have roses in December", 
isn't that lovely?  



In addition to planning my garden I have been getting out my Easter decorations.  Before I placed them throughout the house I thought I'd  gather them together and share some of my favorite spring pieces. 


Some are at least 20 years old 
but if you love a piece so what if it's not in "style". 
This large bunny has hopped on many of my tablescapes and vignettes for 20 years.   He hasn't aged a bit.


This 'Carrots for Sale' sign is from a very long time ago when my home was decorated in a very country theme.  I just loved it and couldn't get rid of it when I redecorated
 so I bring it out every spring.  





 A few moss covered pots and an antique frog are some of my favs too. Birdhouses and nests are also some of my favorite things to decorate the house with for Easter. 



  I collect garden and nature themed accessories mostly from our travels and they bring back lovely memories
 of the places we've been.    




These are sweet love birds given to me by a 
special garden friend.  I think they are cast concrete
 and then aged. 



I love this garden mug.  I purchased a set at an antique mall in Austin years ago and love that they are English  bone china.  They are labeled  'The Royal Horticultural Society' on the inside rim of each mug and are perfect for a spring tea.    


Pansy faces are the cutest... a closeup of the mug.




April is almost here so I'll finally be able to start planting in the garden but until then I'll be planning and preparing my garden journal for this growing season.  





Happy Spring! 

I'm linking with 
Cindy's
Romantic Home
 Show and Tell Friday



   

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Almost Spring!

It's only a few more days until it's
 officially Spring!
Oh how I have missed my garden bloomers 
and green grass.
Just this week I'm seeing buds on my trees and shrubs and the best part is my daffodils are blooming.


I don't have a real forsythia bush anymore
 ( I need to replace it) but I did arrange some silks with a spring nest on my side table in the dining room to give me some much needed inspiration.   
Yellow is my happy color and I love using a splash of it in each of my rooms. 


The first bloomers
   
This winter seemed especially harsh so when the temperatures soared back in the 70's I felt like I had just came out of hibernation!  I've started my spring cleaning, rearranging and decorating.  If I get really ambitious I'll even have a garage sale next month! 


I made a simple centerpiece for my dining room table using Easter grass and some sweet bunny egg cups I purchased at 
Wal Mart for $2.98.    They reminded me of the Pottery Barn egg cups I saw a
 few years ago.



I purchased the galvanized tiered server for 60% at Hobby Lobby last fall.  For Christmas I had the server filled with pine branches and ornaments.  
I think it will be pretty to decorate with each season and I love the versatility of this piece. 


I collect egg cups and these were just too cute to pass up.   I layered the green grass with the my carrots, and bunny cups.  I sprinkled in a few little yellow chicks too. 


Nothing cuter than a baby yellow chick!
 I'm so excited it's almost Spring!!


I'm linking with Marty's 
Inspire me Tuesday



Wednesday, March 11, 2015

St Patrick's Day Honeypot

Spring is almost here and that means getting on the green and setting fresh new tables.  I've already been planning my Easter tablescapes but since we are still in March and Kathleen is having her 7th Annual Blog Crawl I thought I better get busy setting a table in green. 



It's always fun participating and Kathleen won't let us get by with re-reruns, so we should all see some
 great new tables.


I have been collecting pieces for several years and since I don't have a budget for Belleck china I try to add pieces that remind of the Belleck pieces I have admired.


This honeypot is my newest find, I actually passed it by when I first saw it but went back to the antique mall  since it matches the salt and pepper set I already have.  It is in perfect condition and is just so sweet. 



The teapot is a very special to me since one of my best friends surprised me with it several years ago. I just love the luster finish and the size is perfect.  


The shamrock pieces are all marked 'occupied Japan'
and are considerably more reasonably priced than Belleck.  


My dishes are a collection of Pier One, Bordalla pinheiro luncheon plates and bowls also collected over several years.
I layered them on top of twig chargers and added a little cabbage in each bowl.  
   

I enjoy decorating for the seasons and so glad that Kathleen inspires us to share our St. Patrick's Day 
tables and vignettes by hosting the Crawl each year. 


Hope everyone has fun tonight at the Crawl and I hope to visit all the blogs participating.  Can't wait to see what everyone shares!


Linking with Cuisine Kathleen's



Monday, February 23, 2015

Dreaming of Lavender

February has been so cold and we have snow on the ground. This time of year I am dreaming of and planning my spring garden.   We have been in a drought for a number of years and this spring I want to include many more plants and flowers that have minimal watering requirements.   We are already on a year-round water rationing schedule so planting the right flowers is important to keep my garden full of blooms this summer.  




Lavender is one plant that tops my list each year since it doesn't need a lot of water.   Our winters can be harsh too so I find myself replanting a few plants each year as some don't make it through the cold.   I don't mind though because I am rewarded with such beautiful flowers 
for cutting and lavender has few pests.  
It's also bunny and deer resistant too!



I've been trying a few more varieties each year to see which will grow best in my climate.  I think Provence, Grosso and Blanco top the list so far for Oklahoma.   This year I want like to try a few of the deep purple varieties and will have to order online since my local nurseries only 
carry the more common varieties.  



My hubbie and I will be putting in a few more beds for lavender this spring.   I will be ordering my 'Grosso' plants from Purple Haze Lavender in Sequim, 
Washington this year.  

                           
                                   Purple Haze Lavender Farm

For our anniversary in July we are headed up to  Washington for the lavender festival and then up to Vancouver Island, British Columbia to enjoy the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest.  There are so many lavender farms in that area and I can hardly wait to experience all that lavender in person.  
   The Sequim Lavender Festival  is a three day event and I hope to visit each and every farm on the tour.   

(Photos used by permission)
 Purple Haze Lavender Farm

  Just looking at lavender via Pinterest and 
visiting lavender farm websites
 is therapy this time of year. 



I'm counting the days until Spring!


              I'm linking with             
Marty's Inspire Me Tuesday and








Friday, January 30, 2015

Beautiful Blooms




I love growing indoor bulbs like amaryllis because I don't have to be concerned with late freezes like out in the garden.   When everything is gray and dead outside they bring a glimpse of the spring to come.  
I purchased my bulbs for $5 and planted them around the first of December.   They are so easy to grow and when they  begin to bloom from what was an ugly oversized bulb, I wished I had bought more to enjoy.         


(Myriad Botanical Garden Conservatory)

More snow is headed our way here in the heartland!
We've had a few days of record breaking 
high temperatures in the 70's which was amazing, however my daffodils and tulips have grown more than usual and now I worry their blooms will be damaged for spring.  There is nothing prettier than a bouquet of daffodils on the breakfast table!


I am really enjoying the gigantic crimson blooms of my amaryllis and hoping mother nature gives us a bounty of blossoms in our gardens this spring.   



Counting the days until spring!