My $300 rustic picket garden shed

 

Build a Cute and Unique Garden Shed with Pickets for #300This is my cute rustic shed in the suburbs. It is my secret shed because in my subdivision the sheds are supposed to look like the house, be placed where the HOA says you can put it, and it is preferred to be designed and built by professionals.

The $1000 price tag on a shed from the home stores were outrageous plus I had a big problem…

A shed would have to built in the back yard and where my HOA would tell me to put it…well, I have a pond, beds of flowers, trees, and shrubs, and the biggest reason — I would see a shed from my window and not my beautiful plants. Continue reading

Water the Garden in the Morning

Water the garden in the morningWater the garden in the morning to prevent root rot, fungus, and even mold on your garden plants (and even lawn). I know this may contradict with some of the information you have been told or thought about watering the garden in the heat of summer. After all you do not want the water to evaporate in the hot sun as you water the plants. It also seems logical to think that watering at night, when the sun is going down, will help hold the moisture so the plants will soak up all the water for the next day…

Unfortunately, this is not what happens.

I decided to write this because the other day I went one of my girl/garden friend’s house where she showed me her cottage garden that was browning and looking rather sad. I had been there a few weeks earlier for a glass of lemonade sitting on the porch admiring the beautiful daisies, roses, and coneflowers…but now the garden was, well, dying. She was distraught and asked me “why did my beautiful daisies die? What is going on with my gardens?” So I asked questions and she said “my other friend who is a master gardener said it could be too much watering”. I said yes it could be (and water is usally the first thing I check) but the soil is not soggy so I walked around looking at her other annuals, perennials, and potted plants. I saw many of her plants were either drooping or turning black so I reached over to pull up what was left of the daisy plant and discovered there were no roots. So I said “maybe it is critters in the garden because voles eat roots” but something told me that was not it.Water your garden in the morning

So as we are walking around looking at the gardens and many of the plants were wilting, she said “oh I have to water the garden”. I said “water, now? it is getting dark”. She said “yes, I water every night and soak everything like my master gardener friend said”. I blurted out “I discovered your problem! It is root rot because you should never water at night”. She said “what? I thought watering at night helps the plants so the water doesn’t evarporate”.

I felt so bad telling her that you should never water the garden at night and that you should water your garden in the morning to avoid root rot, fungus, moss, mold, and other garden issues. My garden/girl friend was almost in tears and so I spent the next several minutes comforting her as she was almost in tears knowing that she killed many plants in her garden. I tried to console her and told her that I did this many years ago before I learned that watering your garden at night was a no-no.IMG_20150828_160308

I want to say that all gardeners make mistakes and we learn what works in our gardens. I have learned many things by trial and error and that is why I started blogging- to share my experiences with you. I feel very blessed to have my green thumbs and love that I can work with nature to grow beautiful flowers and plants. I love attracting the birds, bees, and butterflies. I get excited looking out my window to see the hummingbird dining at the feeder. Hummingbird pose

If you ever have a gardening question or just want to share an experience, check out The Garden Frog Boutique Facebook page and watch every day as I share my garden, my projects, and other interesting posts and information. You can even contact me there too!

Thanks for stopping by and you can check out my other blog The Garden Frog Boutique where I share more projects both home and garden and even a few recipes every so often. Talk to you later and happy gardening!

Creating. Inspiring. Gardening without the rules!

2016 Copyrighted material C Renee Fuller

 

 

 

The Wild, Untamed Trumpet Vine

The wild untamed Trumpet Vine, Trumpet Creeper, hummingbird magnetThe wild, untamed Trumpet Vine is an agressive but beneficial vine in nature. From June through September, the orange to red almost 3″ long trumpet shaped flowers of this native vine supply food for the hummingbirds. It is a vine used very often for pergolas and arbors because of its fast growth and pretty clusters of bright orange/red flowers. The Trumpet Vine grows in zones 4-9 will spread by seed, underground runners, and suckers from the base of the main plant.

The fast growth of this Southeastern U.S. native will keep any gardener busy chopping and cutting back the vines and runners to keep it in its place. The Trumpet Vine has its place in the wild where it can grow and reach 50’s from its base. I caution anyone who plants this agressive vine near any ornamental trees or other plants that could get choked by the twining of the vines. This is not a vine to plant and leave!The wild untamed Trumpet Vine, Trumpet creeper, hummingbird magnet, native flower

The Trumpet Vine is wild and untamed. If you choose to plant it, then take caution in where you plant it and take steps to collect seed pods before they open (because the pods will dry and open to reveal winged seeds that get carried away by the wind). You could spend time trenching around the base of the Trumpet Vine every couple weeks to cut of any underground runners and pruning the vines to keep them in check. There are ways that you can keep it in check but it will require time and energy.

The Trumpet Vine will grows and blooms best in full sun where it will bloom profusely. It grows in the woods under the canopies of mighty Oak trees. However, there may not be any blooms. It adapts to any soil and will grow well in dry areas. The Trumpet Vine grows rather well here in the red clay soil of Virginia (zone 7). Wild, untamed Trumpet Vine, Trumpet Creeper, native vine, hummingbird flower

So if you fall in love with the idea of covering a pergola with a Trumpet Vine, keep in mind this is a vine that gets heavy as it twines itself on the structure. It will take a bit of extra time to keep this vine in check and Trumpet Vines will grow along the ground or 50′ up an Oak Tree. I confess, I would plant this along a fence line or on an old barn to attract the hummingbirds and take my chances with its wild and untamed growth.

Thanks for stopping by and remember gardening is about working with nature.

Creating. Inspiring. Gardening without the rules!

2016 copyrighted material C Renee Fuller

 

 

 

Digging up my garden

digging up my gardenDigging up my garden this summer in the 90 degree heat has been the most difficult task for me emotionally and physically. Why did I dig up my garden? I should say garden beds because I had to prepare my house for sale. Being a gardener and selling your home is quite an ordeal because buyers want simplicity- clean mulched beds filled with green trimmed bushes. Ugh- so boring!

house

July 2016

If you are a gardener, then you know that going from flowers buzzing with the sounds of bees and the beauty of the blooms swaying in the breeze to perfectly square foundation shrubs and edged beds filled with neat wood mulch tugs at the heart strings of the gardener. I lived for eye catching yellow of the Blackeyed Susans and the purple spikes of the Salvia mixed in with the blooms of daylilies and coneflowers. My beds were filled with the glorious delight of bees, butterflies, and Finches. Yellow Finch male

But not anymore. I had to rip all that up. It was like cutting away a piece of me. I cried as I dug up my beautiful flowers. For 2 months now I have had to stare out my windows at the few flowers left and all the brown mulch that fills the void where my flowers once stood.

Digging up my garden

May 2016

I saved much of shade garden which is now sitting in pots or plopped on the ground in a shady spot under the Oak trees. I show you a picture of where all my ferns, hostas, and even Iris are just sitting waiting for my new home, my new garden. I have friends and neighbors amazed that my once beautiful lush gardens are now piled in a remote spot which adjoins my back yard. My beautiful plants are still alive and growing. This keeps my emotional state in check and calm knowing that my gardens are going to come with me to my new home (whereever that may be).

Digging up my garden

Some in pots, some on the ground all huddled together in the shade

I saved seeds from my Coneflowers and even a few random seedlings that popped up.I threw (literally) the daylilies in the woods because I just could not save everything. Much to my surprise they are thriving! I have a hydrangea sitting atop the ground surrounded by some coneflowers, Autumn Joy Sedum, and even a few clumps of Variegated Solomon Seal. I had to dig up my American Beauty Bush and even my beloved Japanese Maple.To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow

The house is up for sale and I am looking for my new home. My youngest son graduated from high school in June and it is time to downsize and get the hell out of the suburbs. I found an area I love and hope that I can find a new home for me and my 5 fur babies. I do have a house in mind, another fixer upper, with a decent size lot on the edge of a small town which backs up to woods. Plenty of room for the hundreds of hostas, ferns, and other plants I dug up. The garden is a love song quote

I am getting back on track with my blogs so stop by and visit my other blog The Garden Frog Boutique.Thank you for stopping by and watch as I journey through starting over not only in my gardens but in life. Yellow Finch male

Creating. Inspiring. Gardening without the rules!

2016 copyrighted material C Renee Fuller

 

You should not plant an Oak tree next to your house

Oak trees

Fall 2013

Oaks (Quercus)  are majestic and beautiful. They can tower upwards of 100′ tall and drop tons of acorns in a year. When an Oak reaches about 20-30 years old, it will start producing acorns. After about 40 years, the Oak trees will “abundantly” start producing. I can attest to this because the first fall in our current home, we raked and shoveled over 4 tons of acorns and hauled them away. Imagine a truck bed filled to the top of the cab and that is what we did-twice! For a couple of weeks in the fall it would rain acorns all night- pinging off the roof of the house and the top of the cars.

If you have Oak trees, then when I say -it is not safe to be outside on a windy fall day- you will know what I am saying. Acorns hurt when they hit you from the top of a 50′ Oak.

Then about 4 years ago, I hired a tree trimmer to limb (or take off all the branches) up the top canopy. He said “you are not supposed to take off more than 25%” and I replied “you are not going to kill these trees” and so I had them take off about 50%. It was the best money every spent because it cut down on acorns and it allowed a lot more sun to reach my yard and beds. I am not a pruner but Oak and other Trees  need to be trimmed to keep the healthy and remove dead or dying branches. Plus limbing up large trees allows more light to reach under the trees. Continue reading