Thursday, April 12, 2012

Spring in Our Small Back Yard

I don't post about the back yard very often.  It is not the prettiest part of our property, but still has things we enjoy about it.

As we walk out the door, this is what we see on the left.  I plan to plant basil and other herbs in the tubs.

This is what we see to the right.  Larry bought the bag of strawberries a few years ago, and it survives winter in our egress window.  The rosemary plant was in my garden window in the dining room this winter.

The clematis plants will be climbing up and filling up the space, some finding their way into the inside of the deck.

I tried to take the volunteer baptisia in the pot out to plant in the yard, but could not get it out.  I've heard they don't transplant well, but in order to do it, I'll need Larry's help, and the thyme in the pot may end up coming along.

When we moved here 13 years ago, we brought this tub of woodland phlox with us.  I have put several clumps into the yard over the years, and they haven't always survived either the winters or the rabbits.  Now that I'm protecting them from the rabbits, they are doing better, but this one is blooming earlier than the others.

The herb garden on the other side of the fence needs a lot of attention.  The oregano has gone way beyond the space I had allowed for it.  Now that the bird feeders are in there, I've been needing to do some weeding.  Larry put his heated bird bath in there, now that we don't need to have it plugged in.  Oh, and I can't believe the chives are have buds on them!

Looking back to the house, this is a spot Heidi likes to soak up some sun when it is out.

 Heading east, I was not happy with Larry when he put this hose caddy right in the way of going to the other side of the yard, but have gotten used to it.

We can't plant anything where the tub is, because there is a wide gate that we use from time to time.  The goldenrod in it did fine last summer, and I am pleased it survived the winter.

I've mentioned we had to put the gravel in when we couldn't get grass to grow.

I am thinking I got this pulmonaria from a friend awhile back.  When we had the tree cut down in the front yard, this found a home on the east side of the deck.

Last week, a friend gave me these false Solomon's seal plants.  When I read that they spread a lot, I decided to put them in this tub.  I plan to move the sedum type plant that is in there to a sunnier spot.

The hosta on the left was my mother-in-law's, and the one on the right, a good friend of mine who passed away a number of years ago.  I'm glad they like their new home, since they also had to be moved from the area under the tree.

I am a bit behind getting the clematis plants trained so they don't get all tangled up.  I see Larry put Heidi's toys back on the bench.  I'll have to find a new spot where she can reach them.

 The Jacob's ladder and ligularia survived winter in the tub, which is starting to fall apart.

Every spring, I need to put stakes and things in the planting areas  in the back yard, in hopes of keeping Heidi from digging.  It always bugs Larry, so when the plants come up, he takes most of them out, and then I put some back to make sure she knows this is not an invitation to come in and dig.

I trimmed back the monarda 'Jacob Cline' a few days ago.  Here is a link to July of last year to see it blooming next to the gray headed coneflower that is in the corner.

I need to give some plants away that are in the space needed by the coneflower.

I lost the asters that were in this area and behind the shed.  That is unusual.

This is looking back toward the house.  The lavenders would have liked for us to pull them out of the egress window and given them some water before we did, but they have new growth, so they should be fine.  The clump next to the ladder is rough or rigid goldenrod.  I'll have to look that up.

Since this was the area Heidi was digging the most in, I gave up on growing anything, and we moved the squares from the middle of the area to here and put this bench there.  I used it to transplant my seedlings into larger containers the other day.  Heidi likes to lie down in the gravel next to it now.

These dianthus plants have been in this pot a few years.

We still have to protect the aster and variegated false sunflower from Heidi's digging.

As we turn the corner, we are facing the driveway.

On the other side of the garage and fence is my vegetable garden.

Turning around, we see Heidi looking at me from the deck.  Larry says he plans on painting the deck this spring.

Larry likes to decorate the deck with the stuff I drag home from garage sales, stuff he has aquired, and many of the things that belonged to his parents when they lived here.  I like the results.  Fancy, we are not, but homey, yes.


Can you tell a gardener lives here?

I've mentioned I am gardening on the cheap this year, determined to get a loan paid off.  I am excited that the heirloom marigolds I planted last year have come up and these have grown a bit since moving them to the two tubs on the deck.  I will need to get another for the other tub.  These will fill up the space, as they got pretty large last year.  I will be patient.  I guess I could plant another in there, and let them be a little crowded.

I hope those of you who have had early springs, then some freezing temps in the last few days have not had too much damage.  I think the coldest we got was 30. and not for long enough to harm things here.  I did bring my rosemary in for a couple nights.


  1. The covered deck area is probably nice to sit in on a hot day. A little shade and some garden plants to enjoy.
    I like the tubs and the gravel around the path. It all looks like a "room."
    The potting area is smart. Good to have a work space.
    I need to go garage saling for more containers. You've inspired me to find some to leave out with more plants year around.

  2. Since I work for Coca Cola: I spy the wooden bottle carrier. I want it! lol

  3. Its always fun to see anothers garden. I am re -starting home. So I get to take what I have learned to a new location. I like the gravel in the back yard too.

    With All That I Am
    Carrie "forrest"

  4. I always love the whimsy everywhere complimenting the overall flower message and of course the additions and the beautiful Heidi!!

  5. I can see you make use of every available space to grow beautiful and tasty plants Sue! Your woodland phlox is lovely. My attempts to grow it were thwarted by hungry rabbits too. I'll have to try your idea of putting it in a tub near the house - hopefully they haven't invented rabbit ladders yet!

  6. I like seeing your 'back' yard Sue. I think you've done great with it. And I love your latticed room with all the neat stuff in it.

    Thanks for the tour and have a great weekend.


  7. Love the potted herbs. I understsnd mess...that's what my husbands part of the garden looks like. We have that same 1950's metal chair, can't part with it. Liking the 2 shelves up against the shed.

  8. Your garden looks wonderful. I love your use of galvanized tubs. I think I've told you that before but who doesn't mind hearing a compliment, right? :) I hope the mild weather continues.

  9. That deck looks like a great shady place to hang out and relax. And I love the galvanized tubss - a great accent for your garden. Very nice.


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