Monday, October 10, 2011

Blog Birthday Part 2

In my last post, I showed the side yard and curb beds from the Octobers of 2008 and 2011 to celebrate the blog's birthday/anniversary.  In this one, I am showing the east front bed, which was started the spring of 2008, and the new area in the front yard that was started this spring.

I had told Larry that I would make a deal with him.  If I would get our upstairs cluttered room he calls my parlor cleaned the winter of 2007-2008, would he please help me take out some grass to add space to the circle shaped flower bed on the east side of the sidewalk.  I ended up not getting the room totally uncluttered, but still managed to talk him into turning the space into a flower bed.  He rented a sod cutter for this one, and a friend was going to have him cut some sod from her yard, too, but when she saw how hard it was to do this, she changed her mind.   Plus, she was indecisive about what she wanted to do in her yard.

I was tickled about the amount of sod he took out.  I thought we were going to have to negotiate the space. 

I had told Larry I wanted a nice sized area for annuals.  I ended up planting more and more perennials, but there are still spaces where the self sowers can grow.  Here are the 'September Charm' anemone and 'Debonair' mum.  I have a current photo to show how much they have grown in the 3 years they've been here.

A friend gave me this Sweet Annie.  I pulled it out after the first season because I decided it was too big for the area, and I was afraid about how much it may spread.

The purple blooming datura sure did well here. 

The cosmos took a long time to bloom that year.  Here is another photo Larry took for a possible blog photo.  I'm thinking I used this one for Blotanical for awhile.

 The 'Vanilla' marigolds did well, and the insects enjoyed them.  This was the first year I learned the name of some of the butterflies in the yard.  This is a painted lady.  This is also when I noticed how well the bees and butterflies share the flowers.

I also ended up pulling out the Queen Anne's Lace that was growing here on the right side of the photo.  Even though I love the blooms, I read that it is not native, and is invasive in some areas, taking over spaces from some native plants.  I decided I didn't want it taking over my flower bed.  I am still pulling out seedlings.

The front part of the original circle shaped bed shows in this photo.  I wasn't thrilled with the way this side turned out.  I would have liked it more curved, but I can't complain, because Larry did it the best he could.

October 2011:

Joy Pye Weed, kiss me over the garden gate, and love lies bleeding have added some wonderful height to the area.

There is much less dirt showing these days.

I planted another purple datura this year.

The 'Immortality' iris is still blooming.

The painted lady butterflies enjoy the blooms, this time, a verbena bonariensis that I got started from transplanting some from the vegetable garden.

The cosmos plants that I bought as small plants have done well this year.

Here's the photo that shows how much the anemone and mums have grown.  I have dug out some of the anemone to give to friends, and planted some of the mums in the bed across the sidewalk.

I have the steps stacked on each other, because I was trying to figure out if I had one of them on a sprinkler head.  I just planted the orangeish mum last fall, and wasn't even sure if the roots would grow enough to survive the winter.

I like how this photo of the skipper on these cosmos turned out.  I was disappointed that I didn't remember to come out when I saw 2 checkerspot butterflies on these blooms after work today, though.

We had a hot summer, and the sweet peas I started from seed didn't do much, but there are some blooming.

I just noticed today, that the delphinium is blooming again.  These plants think our nice weather is going to last for a long time.  I think they are wrong about that, but I'll enjoy them while I can.

The hibiscus plants are blooming again.  They had slowed down when I started neglecting to deadhead them.

Here is the view of the front yard October of 2008.

October 2011:

I was just going to show the front of the area, but decided to go ahead and post the area in front of the house, too.  I have posted lots of photos already, but I am so thrilled with the transformation, I want to have a record here what things look like now.  These will actually turn into "before" photos of sorts, because there will not be nearly the number of annuals in the area next year.  

I have lots of plants butterflies and bees like, and enough to attract a few hummingbirds.

The switch grasses and little bluestems I planted will be glad when the annuals near them are finished for the season.

I planted lots of natives, and I hope they grow well, filling up this space next year.

The agastache, I think, 'Cana' stayed small and spindly for awhile.  They sure are gorgeous now!

The heirloom marigolds from Baker Creek seeds sure are loaded with blooms!  I wish I remembered which kind these are.  They could be 'Red Cherry', which is one of the two kinds I had seeds for.  I hope to collect some seeds from these.  Maybe they will even self sow.  There are 2 skippers on these.

Here are the 'Debonair' mums I moved from the other side.  I love how they look with the asters I planted this spring.  Only one other kind of aster is blooming.  The rabbits ate the others down, but they are still alive, so maybe next year, they will bloom.

I keep cutting back the flowers so they don't overgrow the sidewalk.

I'm thinking this area will look much different next year, with fewer annuals, and the native plants growing larger.

I want to thank those who have followed my blog over the years.  It's fun how we spend different amounts of time visiting each others' blogs, sometimes taking a break, and then usually coming back.  Like I've said before, when you blog, you can talk when you want to talk by writing a post.  You can listen when you want to listen by reading others' posts.  When you want to do something else, you do, and you don't have to wait for someone to leave.  I do need to be doing a better job spending time with my in person friends, though.

I have continued to be an ad and tag free blog over the years.  I blog for fun. Like some others, I have more than one blog.  Shortly after starting this one, I got the idea to start a blog called, "Keeping my Branch Connected to the Vine" because I wanted to post about my faith walk.  I've ended up neglecting it for the most part, but want to try to keep up with it better.

I have also neglected our grandson's blog, because I couldn't decide whether to start another blog for our second grandson.  I decided to change the blog to, "Time with Grandsons".  I did get a post up to try to catch some of the time I missed posting on it.  Since I am not good with crafts, this is my "scrapbooking" to share with the guys.  I try to show KJ what I've posted when he's interested.

I used to work in a school's childcare center for the student parents.  One of the gals I worked with lives in another state, and a year or so ago, she talked me into starting a Facebook account.  I have met up with some of my blogging friends and acquaintances there.  I almost put my blog there, but didn't like something I read there, maybe some advertising or something, and changed my mind.  I recently put for my status that I don't play games or join networks there.  I spend plenty of time on the computer already.

 I am going to link up to Jean's Bloomin' Tuesday.  Jean, I hope you don't mind my huge post linking to your party.  I am tickled to have so many blooms this time of year.



  1. Sue, I really enjoyed the last two posts and seeing all the transformations in your gardens over time. What a lot of hard work you have done and how beautiful it is! I bet your neighbors are thrilled to have your lovely garden to stroll by. I know I would be walking by every day!

  2. Wow Sue, your garden is just gorgeous! You are totally my inspiration when it comes to transforming a front / side yard into something spectacular. Happy Blog birthday!

  3. PS, there are so many wonderful things to look at in your garden! I'm sure it's even more amazing in person!

  4. Sue, years ago I saw a picture of a front garden on a sloping lot in California and there was no yard, just tons of flowers and it was gorgeous. Yours reminds me of that one.

    I am still voting for a very small ornamental type tree in the stump bed....I think the change and height would be nice. It looks good now too.

  5. Love how you've done away with the sod and added so much beauty to your yard! Enjoy every bloom!

  6. Sue you have lovely gardens and so many blooms still going strong........ enjoyed my visit.

  7. I've enjoyed watching your garden evolve through these before & after pics. Thanks for sharing your garden journey. Beautiful blooms this week too! :)

  8. One of the things I love about blogging is the "scapbooking" of our lives. I really enjoyed watching your garden transform. It looks wonderful.

  9. That's a ton of blooms! Happy blogiversary!

  10. Great post, Sue! I love seeing these posts that really show how much a garden can change over a few seasons! Isn't it amazing to look back and see how small things were...and how much they've grown! In particular, I'm very impressed with the 'September Charm' great!

  11. Wow, your gardens are amazing! That's a lot of flowers!
    I'm all about taking out the lawn. Gardens just add so much more! Awesome!

  12. I'm amazed at how beautiful your garden still looks. Happy blogiversary.

  13. Your garden looks so inviting! I've always grown my gomphrena in pots, but I like the way it looks mixed in with the other flowers along your walkway. I think I'll add that to my Summer Garden Ideas 2012 list! :o)

  14. I am glad Larry was ready and willing back when your were initially inspired. You and your corner have really come along way. Happy birthday.

  15. Wow Sue - great job, your garden is lovely! Nice to "see" you too, Happy Blogaversary!

  16. Happy blogoversary! Your garden sure looks nice! I love the incidental dog in the shots. I often have an incidental at in a similar color. :) I've never grown sweet Annie; maybe next year.

  17. Sue write a post on how you keep all the weeds and grass out. I inherited perennial gardens all over this yard. That have grown up with grass. I am afraid of losing the perennials to the grass. My neighbor told me that there is a weed grass killer that is especially for perennials when his mother lived here. I haven't been able to find any that works, and it is too overgrown to work it and the vegetable garden.

  18. Happy blogoversary. You have so much blooming and it was nice to see images of the transformation of the previous posts. Your garden is very deserving of your sign that is posted. I can see the garden filled with butterflies all summer.

  19. What a transformation you have made, Sue! Those purple datura are gorgeous and deserve a spot in the garden every year. I meant to add on Part I of your blogaversary post that I often do some negotiating with my husband, too. I keep telling him the more garden space I create, the less grass he has to mow:)


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