Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Surprised that my favorite David Austin rose, Abraham Darby has been discontinued.

I am madly in love with Abraham Darby roses. This may not be the best staged photo ever, but I really love this photo of my precious roses in my little Waterford vase in my old house in Sidney. I now live in the Gulf Islands, and below are my first flowers up here at my new place. Next year I will definitely have lots to pick and share. I’m a happy girl. 

I feel bad that David Austin has discontinued them. So many people will be deprived of the beauty of this amazing rose. That said, I will be selecting two new varieties for my garden next year. 

Sunday, July 03, 2022

Front door makeover

A couple years from now, on the renovation schedule, we will be moving the front doorway forward and putting a westcoast style beamed entry over it. This will of course include a new door and lighting. In the meantime though… we ordered a piece of safety glass and decided to turn the existing very outdated western horseshoe/English Lion knocker/bizarre carved panel combo door that created a claustrophobic and dark look to this part of the house, into a simple glass door. Win win. More light and not so oddly a 70’s, western and English style combo door. Also, the door bell didn’t work and there were wires dangling from it. All in all, it needed a bit of love. 


Saturday, May 07, 2022

Trees on the move… and a new Japanese maple tree.

I cannot believe how much work the new garden is. But also how exciting it is. Moving a few large/mature trees is wonderful. It will give the garden a more mature look instantly. We moved a lilac tree and a Pink Lady Dwarf Apple today. 

It is the second time I have moved my favorite plants from my old garden in Sidney, in the last two years. I located another of my favorite Japanese Maple “Harvest Orange” at Dinter in Duncan and will be picking it up on Tuesday. They had a large one, so that is wonderful. I’ll take a good look around while I’m there and see if there is anything else they have that is on my list for this year. I don’t really plan on moving again any time soon, so it is fun to be setting up a garden to last for many years of enjoyment. 

My Sidney Japanese Maple “Harvest Orange” 
See why I love it so much. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Raking sticks and large pieces out of bark mulch in the flower garden

This is something I learned in Sidney when I turned two large back yards into a Back to Eden garden. When you get free wood chips there can be a lot of sticks and debris to remove. (I have learned that even if you buy it, that can still be the case). I just do a gentle raking over the surface, in kind of a herringbone type pattern with a soft leaf rake. (Either water it well first, or wait for a heavy rain. It is so much easier). It allows you to both level the mulch and make piles of sticks and large ‘chips’. Look at the difference it makes. 
Jumble of sticks and huge chips… close-up

Very messy garden

Piles to be disposed of

One side done, one to go 


I do this raking every week or so for about a month and after that I just pick up sticks that pop up to the surface. So easy.

Tuesday, March 08, 2022

Sunday, February 20, 2022

Slow going but I got ‘er done!

It was a heck of a job but it is all done and a temporary herb garden installed. 

This full of potential 11x3’ alcove just under the dining room window was a bit of a nightmare. It had been raised with brick and boards, half filled with dirt and like every other garden here, filled with a minimum of 6” to about 10” of irregular sized rock. Mostly in the 2-3” size but wildly varying. So many of them are buried in the dirt after years and years and impossible to get out with out picking them out of the packed soil one by one with your fingers. It really has been a crazy amount of work for just a few smallish gardens. I removed two Sidney back yards replacing lawn with huge vegetable and flower gardens in clay no less, and that was a lot easier than the little bit I’ve done here so far. But here we are. Getting it done. 




These stones are all now holding up fence posts securing 
the wire deer fencing in place. 

Wednesday, February 09, 2022

Just planting a few things…

Until the deer fencing goes up, I am very limited in what I can plant. But there are a few things. Deer don’t seem to touch daffodils or snowdrops. And the hostas are dormant so no worries. That means I can plant the shade loving plants in the garden by the north wall. 

Garden cleaned of all the stone mulch (what a job) and planted with hostas (pink flags showing me where they are because they have not begin growing yet), snowdrops and narcissus brought in from my old garden. Then I top dressed with mulch and chips from the fir trees we had removed. They will be used 100%. Mulch and chips, lots of beams for building and some firewood for the pieces that can’t be used. This makes me feel very good.