Saturday, June 11, 2011

Went on a Garden Tour Saturday

It was a beautiful day, and I almost decided to stay home and garden, but I knew if I did, I would regret not going on our local garden club's tour of gardens.  I could have gone with a friend, but decided to go by myself so I could pace myself because I planned to pick up our grandson at my parents' house afterwards.  Well, I got a late start, and ended up coming home to eat lunch, while Larry went to pick up KJ.  I did not make it to the rain gardens in several yards not very far from where we live.  Someone said they were not having people go to their back yards, so I figured I can drive by there another time.

The first garden I went to was called a Sustainable Living Center.  It had several rain gardens.  These rain gardens were more natural looking than any I've seen.

When I told Larry this place has chickens, he rode his motorcycle over.   We are thinking of looking into whether we have the space and can learn the skills needed to have a couple hens. 

The side yard is on a bike trail.

They are members of Community Crops.  There are a number of shared garden spaces around the city.

This sign said the area is a wildlife garden.  I'm a larkspur fan, so included this photo.

They had most of the plants labeled, and the clothesline had a sign saying something about a solar powered clothes dryer.  I thought that was cute.  The people in the photo are looking at the chickens.

This was a nice asparagus patch in the veggie garden.

Here are the chickens!

I didn't get many good long shots of the some of the other gardens, including the next one.  This garden had lots of shade, and lots of cool shade plants.  This is a corner lot, and the corner is on the other side of the wall.

Here's a view of the entrance to the back yard.

There was a nice variety of flowers, including lots of roses.  She also had a couple amsonias, one of my favorite plants.

There was a nice hedge of raspberries along an edge of the back yard.

Grapes were on the fence of the deck.

I was drawn to these lovely blooms in the front yard, and told this plant how lovely its flowers are.  When I saw the foliage, I looked at the sign, and saw I was right that it is bear's breeches.  I was so excited!  I've had a clump a couple years.  It has not bloomed yet, but is almost the size of this one, so maybe it will yet this season.  This photo does not do them justice. 

The next garden was the fanciest of them all.  When I stepped inside, I immediately had a feeling of tranquility.

Waterfall number one:

Waterfall number two:

Waterfall number three:

And down the way, a fountain!

I love this old street light with hanging baskets on it!

The next garden is a courtyard planted and maintained by the landscape club at our local Catholic high school.  When I was in the school, I looked at the photo book they had, and someone told me they had also planted flowers at a hospital, and did some work at the garden of an outreach center where meals are served daily and people are assisted in other ways.

If it wasn't for blogs, I wouldn't have known these are mayapples.  It was cool to see such a nice clump of them.

I wouldn't have known what this was, if one of the sponsors of the garden hadn't pointed it out to me.

It's a nice stand of Jack in the pulpits!

They had a number of hydrangeas and hellebores, as well as a nice variety of annuals.  I like the little bird bath.

I'm up way past my bedtime.  I'm going to show the next photos with fewer words.  This next one is the only garden where I wasn't able to get permission from the owners to show their place on my blog.  I did leave my phone number.  I'm going to assume it's OK, since I didn't hear otherwise.  The ladies from the garden club said these folks are actually members of our rose society, and they gave a talk at the garden club.  They have a huge property, and share a garden with their next door neighbors.  The ladies also said the owners do all their own work, and spend about 40 hours a week in the gardens, and they use horse manure.  I have access to some, but need to talk Larry into taking me there and filling some of mh 5 gallon buckets, since he doesn't want it in his truck.

I love all the gardens, and don't want to pick a favorite, but if I had to, this may be the one, because of all the space and variety of plants.  I am intimidated by roses, though. 

This is the area I entered first.

I was drawn to the sculpture.

I think this is the shared garden space.

I couldn't resist including the photo of the bucket.  I have something in common with these gardeners besides growing larkspur.  I use buckets like these, too.

We are leaving the shared garden space now.

Larry, can you make me one of these?

How about this structure?

I'm guessing the other tomatoes belong to the neighbors, and these are the ones owned by the ones who were on the tour.

Here's a final view, which is across from the first photo I showed.

It was hard choosing which photos to include.  I didn't get all of the areas of any of the gardens.  I loved them all.  They each had their individual personalities.  For awhile, I was feeling inadequate, but I came home and pulled lots of weeds across the street, and settled down.  I still love my gardens, because they are mine.  They are always a work in progress.  I get joy from working in them, and seeing the plants grow and do their thing throughout the seasons.


  1. Sue, thanks for letting us share the tour.
    I have never been on one before.

    All the waterfalls were wonderful, but the gardens that appeal to me the most are the ones not landscaped by professionals and surely that one was. If not, they have my deepest admiration.

    That first garden made me think of a real home garden.

    They all have ideas for us.

    You don't have to have a lot of knowledge to keep a few chickens. I would start with at least 5 though. They do not lay daily as some would have you believe.

  2. Garden tours are some at the top of my summer entertainment list! It was interesting to "take" this one with you.

  3. Thank you for the tour of the gardens, they are all lovely and I saw so many great ideas. I would love to have a few hens in my backyard also.

  4. i want some bears breeches, an interesting plant. Very nice tour.
    Steve, OOTP

  5. Isn't it amazing to see what gardens exist here in town?! I gasp when I enter some of them, because from the street, you have no idea often. So many pretty flowers/plants that I have never seen before - thank you for sharing. And those water falls!!! I just had to stay home and enjoy the weather and pulled a few weeds.

    When we were kids, for a school project we hatched eggs and kept 2 chickens. We gave them chick feed when they were young, then switched to a different feed and started getting eggs almost on a daily basis. We had them until a cat got past our black Lab and killed them one night.

  6. I had no idea there was another tour! Well, it's clear I won't be able to live up to some of these next week for Wachiska.... It was a nice day yesterday, and I was outside for most of it pampering things for Father's Day.

  7. Wow--
    all of the gardens are so lush and green.
    This year we planted two vegetable gardens and I've got established plants around the house.
    I curious whether the 'hostas' and shade lovers would do well on the North Side of my house? and how they would fair through a Texas winter. I'd probably have to build cold frames to keep them alive.
    As for now...everything is dead and dry. We have a burn ban in effect due to the hi possibility of fire. We are cautioned NOT to burn!
    I'm thinking that my plans may need to exchange my front dry dusty yard for native texas grasses and rock and succulents. This will cut down on the watering and the rock will hold the dust down!


  8. I meant to include-- thanks for showing these plants and naming some of them for us, some were *new to me. Unheard of before... bears britches and jack in the pulpit to name a few!

    great tour, thanks again-- Pat

  9. looks like you guys did have a great garden tour - with lots of variety. i cannot believe that the catholic high school had poison ivy growing - that was what it was wasn't it?

  10. I know how easy it is to come home and look at your garden and go, uh. I did it yesterday too after visiting several gardens for a tour we're having next Saturday. Then I thought better of it and remembered how much I love my garden. It's not perfect but it's mine and I love it and so there. :) Great shots!

  11. Sue, thank you for the great tour! I'm going on my first garden tour in two weeks, in my city. I'm very much looking forward to it!

    My husband has a motorcycle as well. Do you ride with him?

  12. Sue,
    The three waterfalls was awesome. Guessing all one feature combined and not part of a creek. Horse manure can have bad things in it.

  13. Thanks so much for taking us along to see the many gardens you toured. There are quite a few tours going on around here at the moment, just about one every weekend, I think! Last weekend I thought about going on one, but then decided to stay home and work on my own. I once saw some beer's breeches in flower, a huge plant, so I know how impressive those flowers are.

    As far as the intimidation factor, I second what Grace said. The important thing is that you get joy from working in your own garden.

  14. That was fun and I didn't have to endure the heat. Some large properties on your tour and soo tidy. Do you think we could ever have a tour? Would have to keep everything tidy...ahh that will never happen here hubby dose a great job on the lawn but not so tidy. Love those structures also.

  15. Thanks for taking us along on the tour, Sue. Your own garden measures up very well against what you saw. So you don't have some expensive sculpture and an elaborate water feature; your plants are extraordinary. Did you come away with any ideas for changing any of your plantings?

  16. Wow - what a great tour. I love the garden with the waterfalls -- how big was that garden? It must have been huge. I also like the shade garden -- so green and serene. That little sculpture is cute, I can see why it caught your eye.

  17. Thank you for sharing these gardens. They are amazing. I can't believe all the waterfalls in the one garden.

  18. Hi Sue, You had quite the day!! It's fun to see the diversity of the gardens. Everything looked so good - did you bring home any additional ideas for your yard and gardens??

  19. Wow, what a tour! I loved the water fall with the giant purple ball. It looks like you had a ton of fun!

  20. What a nice selection of photos Sue, thanks for making me feel like I took the tour with you. :)

  21. I love garden tours! Thanks for taking us on yours.
    Those bear's breeches are gorgeous. I hope yours bloom this season.
    The photo of the raspberry bush made my mouth water, we had raspberries in the place where I grew up.

  22. Wow, looks like a great day for a garden stroll! I need to do more shade gardening, my shady areas are boring.

  23. in the picture above the Jack-in-the-Pulpit - the plant with the three leaves. it looks like poison ivy to me...leaves of three let it be...

  24. Sue I loved the tour thanks for sharing. I liked the waterfalls and that area that put you right into a tranquil mood. There is something very calming about green plants and water.

    Oh... and I too, liked the light post with the hanging baskets.

  25. Sue, thanks for letting us be part of the garden tour you went on. I really enjoyed looking at the pictures.
    I used to love going on garden tours but since I decided for running my own business, it seems to get harder and harder on me finding the time for going on garden tours. Garden tours are always a great way to find new inspirations and to see how other gardeners grow their plants, how they design and decorate their gardens.
    Happy Gardening
    Paula Jo

  26. I love visiting other people's gardens, Sue so this was a great treat, thank you. My favourite was the garden with such beautiful water features!

  27. Sue,
    Thanks for commenting on our blog. The horse manure we got had all kinds of mushroom spores in it. Top soil we got several years go had bindweed in it, terrible stuff, one piece of root an inch long can grow 1700 inches in one season. Not we buy compost for $28 a yard and I get it on my trailer.

  28. How fun! I missed Tulsa's edible gardens tour this weekend. I guess I need to go to the next one.


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