I am just beginning, but my sister's garden has been my inspiration. She and her husband have gardened for many years but only on this one for the past 10 years or so. Their 1930s era home is on three acres about 40 miles south of Atlanta. I think it is the epitome of a country cottage garden. Some photos are from 2009 when their garden was featured on their local county garden tour. I'd like to share it with you. Hope you enjoy it.
Unnamed Austin rose behind the angel in the bird bath. The pillar on which the birdbath sits was part of a foundation pillar from a house across the street which was torn down recently. It's the perfect touch.
Thanks so much, Critter. She does have an inside edge. She and several other ladies own and operate two antique stores so they have access to many opportunities to see people's rusty "junk." Kay also picks up pieces of old iron fences to use scattered throughout the garden. She does seem to have the "touch" to put the right piece in just the right place. She and her husband did all this themselves. Here's one fence piece that fits right into the bed.
Y'all can see why I'm so inspired by all this. I will post my humble efforts as they take place. And mine won't be on such a grand scale because I have no one but myself to do it. But I seem to learn a little more from her every year. Put that with all the helpful folks at DG, and I should at least be able to come up with something decent.
Here's more of Kay and Bobby's garden. Iris growing in a water garden ...
Whew! That's about all. Thank you all for the wonderful comments.
I am so eager to get started on my own garden this year. Will post pics of my efforts as I go along. When I get discouraged, I go to Kay's and wander through the garden. As you all know, gardening is a never-ending thing. They are coming up with new stuff all the time. Seeing it all gives me the boost I need. Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did sharing it. I am so proud of them!
Judy, thanks for sharing photos of your sister's beautiful gardens with us. That old galvanized tub brought back lots of memories. My dear Mother used to rinse her clothes in one every wash day, sitting on a stool, she had a wringer washer until the 1960's. We also took our baths in that tin tub every Saturday night. That is a stunning planter(old rusted coke machine)Who would have ever thought to use it as a planter? I've seen the iron beds used as trellis. Slept in those too. You all have Ga. clay and pine straw and chiggers in that pine straw, right? LOL! Nobody up north uses pine straw for mulching but I know it is a Southern Tradition. Lots of pine trees in the South too. We had 4 1/2 acres of them and I hate a pine tree to this day. They're only good for pine cones and pulpwood.
Mini and Pippi ... Thanks for the comments about Kay's garden. She has just joined DG (I tried to tell her about it last year but she wouldn't listen ... now she says she can't stay off of it LOL) so, hopefully, she will see the comments herself.
Pippi, that old galvanized tub, or one like it, served as a "swimming pool" for us kids when we were very young. That was before they invented plastic play pools. And yes, my grandmother had an old wringer-washer too, and the galvanized tub caught the clothes as they were flattened and squeezed through the wringer. My mother was lucky and in the mid 1940s got one of those newfangled E-Z Spindryers ... a machine that washed in one side and spun the water out in the other. Man! She thought she was UPtown! LOL
Not only chiggers in the pine straw but TICKS! Man, do you have to check yourself carefully after putting down pinestraw! But, yes, it is the mulch of choice for most southern gardens. I love my Georgia pines. I will cut down a sweetgum in a heartbeat but leave my pines alone, thank you! :-)
Thanks, Jean. She has been my inspiration. She is in Hollonville (Pike County) between Brooks and Griffin. The house was built in the 1930s. There was no garden when they moved there, only the pond that had been filled in with dirt. They have really put their hearts and souls into it.
I "toured" your garden and just wanted to cry! The "Gestopo" park manager where we had our little manufactured home (trailer, or what you call in your neck of the woods, 14 x 70) had BEAUTIFUl flower beds I had lovingly filled with flowers I had traded for from DaveGarden friends and LOTS of wonderful garden art. Our manager HATED my garden art and bullied us into getting rid of it. We just sold that place and I'm now trying to rebuild from scratch at a another home. I couldn't afford another pickup trip to get my Garden art (about $100 and one weekend). Oh well...
Psychw2 ... I am so sorry about your garden art. We love our little odd pieces of what some consider "junk" don't we? I'm sure you will "rebuild" ... and have a lot of fun doing it. Please send photos of your progress and start another thread all your own. Things are starting to get a little strung out here. We'd love to see your new "art."
I've quite enjoyed the pictures of this garden and just love the pieces of odd items used in and around giving some added focal points mixed with the foliage and flowers. I'm always on the search for items that I can use in my garden for added interest. Thanks for posting the pictures.
Thank y'all so much for the kind comments. I think Kay could put just about anything in her garden and it would look like it belonged there! Glad I was able to give some inspiration to others. She sure is an inspiration to me. She is a member of Dave's but I'm the "techie" person in the family. I do the pics and post them. One of these days when I get a decent garden going, I'll post some of my own.
It's a beauty, thanks for the rebump. Love seeing how others put persoal touches in. Who ever knew rust could look so good. Maybe thats the only place it should ever show up, the garden. lol. Are those red knockout roses fragrant and what is the mature height? Tell your sis thanks for helping to inspire the rest of us.
Thanks for the compliment, warriorswisdomkathy. My sister should be on here somewhere eventually. LOL. Unfortunately, Knockout roses are not fragrant. I don't know what the "official" mature height is, but one in her garden is at least 8 feet tall, maybe more. She has never pruned or trimmed it. And, with that many blooms, it's almost impossible to deadhead all of them. I started out trying to deadhead mine then gave up. They do look sort of ratty between the big flushes, but they bloom continuously until frost. I don't think mine even lost all their leaves this year because it was so mild.
Judy, I just revisted your sister's garden via your photos and although I commented on it back in May 2010, looking at those pictures again makes me homesick. As a child, I remember visiting some friend's house and her gardens looked a lot like your sisters but on a smaller piece of property. I remember the spanish moss hanging from the trees in her yard and the camelias, and wisteria..that part of NC is sandy, rather than your sister's Ga. clay. Isn't it funny when childhood memories come to the surface and now as an adult, you think it might not have look like that at all? I never had books to read so I don't think it came from my imagination. If you have the right piece of property and the right setting, and creativity, you can do so much, like your sister has done. Her porch is so typical of old houses, reminds me of a craftsman build home..That friend's house used to have French Style doors where she had white sheers hung and when she opened up the doors, and the sheers would bellow(flap?) from the breeze. Does your sister have any "Sweet shrubs" aka Carolina allspice? The scent from that is heavenly, and so are magnolias when they bloom, as are lilacs. Maybe the wisteria I spoke about was really lilacs. Their flowers are similar in color but wisteria needs an arbor to grow on because its vines get heavy and they need a good support system.
Looks like your sister has created" a lot of rooms "outdoors. Beautiful!
Now when are you going to show us your flowergardens, I bet they are just as pretty?
So glad you enjoyed your re-visit to Kay's garden. I haven't even been down there this year but she says it just gets prettier every year ... she says she guesses because it's maturing. She hasn't had as much time to devote to it this year because she has a somewhat new, thriving antiques business (that's where she gets some of that gorgeous rusty stuff). I don't think she has any sweet shrub, but I remember it growing wild in the woods near our house when I was a kid. Coming home from school we'd all pick a bud and smush it between our fingers. What a delightful scent. Wisteria grows wild here too and is considered invasive ... but oh, so pretty draping over the trees along the highways.
I only wish I had gardens like Kay's. I puttered around in 2009, then got started in earnest in 2010 and had beds prepared by a landscaping company. Went as hard as I could but only got part of the front planted before I gave out. I soon realized that gardens like Kay's take years to prepare and mature. Plus, there are two of them and only one of me. Last year I had bad health problems and did hardly anything. This year I'm going to go slower and have the help of portable oxygen to keep me from giving out so bad. I bought two ferns and some petunias for my front hanging baskets yesterday, plus four bright yellow tomato cages (LOL). Hope I can get all that done, hung and planted plus clean up the front porch a bit. I bought new cushions for the wicker chairs last year but never got the porch clean enough that I wanted to put them out. Plus, they may clash with the porch floor ... and you know what that means ... paint it. Groan.
There is a bunch of stuff on my back deck that is still sitting in pots. I'm trying to make myself plant all that before I buy anything else. I definitely am a plant hoarder. LOL I would love to have "rooms" in my huge back yard but I can't figure out how to do it ... divide it up ... whatever you want to call it. I sit and stare and try to imagine them but nothing concrete has hit home yet. I definitely am a cottage garden person ... I love the abandoned disorder and different colors and textures that just sort of come together. I will definitely send photos as I make ANY progress this year. All the people on Dave's have been so supportive and encouraging. Don't know what I'd do without them.
All I have so far are my Knockout roses that are going nuts in spite of being neglected last year. Here's what I'm working with. I have red petunias waiting to go in hanging basket for the front of the porch and Boston ferns for the side. Plus, I have Lantanas and Blue Daze for the planters at the foot of the steps. The second photo shows the front area (back in 2010 before the roses were planted) where I'm working now. Let's see if I can get that done today.
Boy, what a difference the color of the roses have done..You know with the exception of some hanging baskets, you may not need anything else in front. Wow! I didn't realized those type roses spread out like that. I am working with two rose bushes that were planted by the original seller, have no idea of the variety but they do well. One bush produces a coral color rose and the bush(wood)looks old. We've cut it all the way to the ground before and it comes back so I'm hanging on to it as long as it does that. The other rose bush is a nice pink color and in between it I have a yellow minature rose that was given my DH when he was in hospital one time and it is full of buds in the summertime, so they must be planted in right location. That gets the morning and early afternoon sun.
Thanks for sharing the pictures. So glad Kay's business is going well.
Judy, just found this thread and love looking at the pictures of your sister's garden. I also live in Newnan (actually about 8 miles south of the square). Would love to meet you sometime and swap some gardening stories. I am fairly new at gardening. Just quite working 4 years ago and have enjoyed trying to get my yard and gardens in shape after years of neglect. It is a slow process, but coming along. Last year I put in a nice landscape at my 86 year old mother's house near Moreland. It went from trees, moss and clay to a colorful oasis int he woods for her to enjoy. It was fun, but didn't get much done at my house that year.
Thanks for sharing!
Kathy 1 (from Newnan)
I'd love to meet you too. I live in East Coweta about halfway between Newnan and Peachtree City... Thomas Crossroads area. I'm new at gardening also. Would love to have a cohort to learn with. I'm going to a gardening roundup in Cleveland, GA, tomorrow morning. Wish you had contacted me sooner and you could have gone too. This is only my second one but they are lots of fun ... friendship, plant-swapping and eating good food. Will send you a D-mail with phone number.
Kathy 2 (from Colorado). Thank you so much for the compliments. It really means a lot. My little tract house (before the porch and flowers) has turned into a country cottage and I couldn't be happier puttering around and making it look "homey."
Would you mind terribly if I asked the color of the paint on your house, mine needs painting, one of these days, you know after alllllll the other chores, planting, remodeling the kitchen, etc... lol. Kathy from Colo.