Thursday, May 17, 2018

I've Been Working in My Flowers

I have been outside a good bit this week puttering in my flowers. The weather is still pretty...won't be long before the real heat settles in. I have much to do still, but I thought I would share some of my progress outside. Stitching friends I will have a progress update for you at the bottom.

Warning ---long post. I really need to post more often😜

I have these pots right by the garage. The wall sort of hides the garbage cans and stuff that you need to maintain a yard. Since we live on the water, we have a very small lot. There is no storage shed to hide stuff. We have a small place under the house that we store some things in, but most has to go in the garage. Water living though makes it all tolerable.

The petunias have been thriving here, but soon it will be too hot for them. I will have to move them to the shadier area under the trees.

A very long time ago this stone wall was a true planter. Absolutely nothing could survive full sun in the stone. Hubby built a wood piece to fit on top of it and we just bought pots to plant on top.

It was a genius idea if I must say so myself.

I have a mixture of plants in there at the moment all of which are doing well, but when the summer heat settles in I will have to move some. 

One year I got smart and bought some extra pots. When the heat settles in I return the Lilies of the Nile to the wall along with geraniums. They seem to be able to handle the heat best. In the meantime the lilies are on the other side of the wall. This past winter is the first winter ever in our time in this house (since 2002) that the lilies have been bitten by the cold. They are slowly coming back and should be ready by June to pop up there in place of the petunias.

Moving along to the front of the house where I have been trying for years to grow roses. I have roses in two beds. One is doing better than the other.

If you noticed lots of leaves on the wall...there are. I was going to do a whole post in April about live oaks, but didn't get the chance. I will save that thought for next April. It is annual event. The leave dropping of live oaks. 

Here is the first one.

I have five rose bushes in this one... Rio Samba (my new favorite), Perfume Delight, Queen Elizabeth, Chicago Peace (not doing well at all), and Arizona Rose. These all have a pink or peach tone to them. I also have my day lilies surrounding them. You can read why I love day lilies here.

Did you spot my new concrete yard art?

Hubby has a love for concrete yard art. I have to hold him at bay...don't want too much. This one and one other is new.

My other rose bed is to the other side of the front door. It is my red rose bed. Half of it is doing well.
It has an Oklahoma, Chrysler Imperial, and an Olympiad which are Hybrid Teas and making it. I had another Oklahoma and Chrysler Imperial that I think are kaput. There is a Land of Lincoln that just grows tall and never blooms. Argh... Then I planted two Floribundas: Europena and Red Citiscape. Also there is one yellow one in this bed for Mom. It is an Oregold.

Along the walk to the door is my other potted plants. The geraniums are amazing in this pot. Every year they get bigger and bigger. I have some hostas in with them. The big lily looking plant is the Lily of the Nile lilies. They produce a tall purple flower in the summer. The front pot is just a mixture for now. We will see what survives. I had some coleus I think last year in it.

And then there are my sweet swans. I purchased some patriotic ribbon for them. Memorial Day will find them decked out in their new ribbons.

I left the sticks to show you what I have to stop Gus from bringing in constantly. There are some pretty pink ribbons on the swans now, but they didn't show up to well.

Driving into our circle and to the right of our driveway I have a huge flowerbed. I mostly just try to keep it with things that the sprinkler hits. It has azaleas for the early spring, camellias for the winter, a hydrangea and some caladiums for the summer. 

Pete the Pelican has been welcoming folks for quite a while now. A little deer too.

I just put out fresh pine straw and Hubby added sand to the grass. It will be lush and green soon.

One of my favorite things is the wagon wheel with the ferns. The birds love this area too.

Did you see the other new concrete addition?

A sea turtle and some star fish are in there.

Now to the back where I am in no way finished...

The top back deck has my plants that are right outside my kitchen sink.

Geraniums on top for full viewing.

Now let's head downstairs where you will find my mess. I am cleaning here and will most likely have to finish this weekend.

Gus joined me for these pictures and of course he got in that water. He gets in that water EVERY time the back door opens.

Hubby cloroxed and pressured washed the white tile. I would never ever in my whole life no matter what trend was in have chosen white tile. It is insanely hard to keep clean on the water and with a live oak and the largest pine tree in Fort Walton Beach right there to keep it covered it is mostly never white.

It looks nice for now. He broke a pot in the process. I told him I had too many anyway. One less to take care of.

My mother started me on angel wing begonias years ago. I brought them inside this winter and they are looking puny. It won't be long until they are lush again. They love the humid weather on the deck.

Anyway, you can see I have more to clean off.

Little glimpse of heaven on earth. I never get tired of my view. I think it may be one of the best on the bayou. 

Thought you might like to see how much the water level changes with the seasons. This is now. 

The next picture was the same spot in late January.

Crazy huh?!

Now for my a picture of my sweet wet Gus.

I am leaving you with a picture of my table which has cut roses pretty much every time one blooms.

And a little stitching progress.

I am loving this monochromatic summer one. The color is gorgeous. It will be a pillow for my church pew. Can't wait to finish it. I sent my Home of a Needleworker to the framer's on Saturday.

And Lemony is avoiding the heat. Stretched out on the cool tile.

Sweetest dog ever.

See you sooner so that I have such a long post.


  1. Oh I am coveting your gardening skills and that beautiful view. I have a black thumb. I killed an orchid that a friend gave to me when I broke my wrist. I followed her instructions but it up and died anyway. I love geraniums and petunias. They make me think of my Grandmother Tankersley. Whenever I smell petunias sweet spicy scent I can picture myself going up the steps to the porch at her house. She had petunias planted in beds there. Sweet memories. Right now I just have hostas. I have not managed to kill them yet.:)

    1. I have a black thumb, too, Arlene. I can NOT keep plants alive.

    2. A lot of flowers is all about conditions and mine will thrive until late July and then they will be as tired of heat as me.

  2. Your hubby has good taste. Lovely concrete yard piece of art!

    1. I will have to tell him you said so. He will like that. I do like his choices too. I was a little worried he was getting too many at first.

  3. Your flowers look great. My sister and I helped my Mom pick out and plant the flowers for in front of her house, but all the chipmunks and squirrels keep digging in the flower beds, so she's having trouble getting them to grow.

    1. Oh that would be terribly frustrating.

  4. I think your puttering in the flowers is great. Your plants look super, Sandy. I had to chuckle over wet Gus. I think Lemony has the right idea. Enjoy your weekend!

    1. I think Lemony does as well. Gus loves the water, so I have a towel hanging by the door. IT is just going to be a daily thing.

  5. How nice to have a home on the water, Sandy! That is my dream some day :) Your gardening skills are enviable. I have pretty much given up here because our deer eat everything...

    Love the shade of blue in your summer stitching!

    Hope you have a relaxing weekend ahead!

    1. Thanks Carol, It is a long story about our arrival at the water home. It belonged to my husband's parents who in my opinion didn't get to enjoy it long enough. I never ever take it for granted.
      I am loving the blue in the summer project as well. I am hoping to finish it by the weekend because I have a patriotic stitch I want to do.

  6. Wow, Sandy, I am in awe of your green thumb. And yes, very much of a genius idea to put wood atop that stone planter and just set the pots there. It looks so nice one would never know the plants were not actually planted in the planter. Love the idea.

    I won't be trying it since I cannot keep plants (other than wildflowers) alive. My son gave me a gorgeous plant for Mother's Day (and bought it at a lovely local greenhouse where they pride themselves on their plants). It is already thinking about dying. I think next year I will ask for a Dunkin Donuts gift card ...

    1. You made me smile. Thanks, I do love to putter in the dirt. I love growing things. Even when I taught school, I had the kids growing things each year.

  7. Thank you for the tour of your gardens. I love the stone work on the outside of your house. And the bayou in the back! How special that is!

    Love on your pups for me. We are done with having dogs. Now we just love on our grand-pups. Our last dogs were buff-colored Cocker Spaniels named Buddy and Pal. They were litter mates and we adored them. They lived long and happy lives with us.

    1. Thank you. I do love to putter in the flowers.
      Gus will be a year old in June. We got him in August. I had just lost our last Springer last April. I decided to go ahead and get him. I told Hubby he would be the caboose and when Lemony and Gus were the last. We would just enjoy our children's dogs too.

  8. Lemony looks so much like my dog Barca!AriadnefromGreece!


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