October 1, 2014

The Perfect Hydrangea – My Fast Growing “Limelight”

Limelight is one of the easiest and fastest growing hydrangeas around! This hydrangea is a truly stunning flowering shrub!  It’s the only one that I have that made it through our unusually cold Georgia winter without any damage. All my other hydrangeas are just leaves with a few blooms (except my Endless Summer ). Here’s why I think this is a must have hydrangea in your garden (zone 3-8).

The perfect hydrangea - growing Limelight Hyrandreas

Hydrangea paniculata  ‘Limelight’  blooms from May into fall and has soft lime green petals. The petal mature into pink in the fall. You can just see a tiny bit of pink on the one above.

Growing Limelight hydrangeas - My Limelight planted with pink zinnias and pink crepe myrtles

Limelights bloom on new wood in the summer which is why this one is doing so well despite our cold winter. You should prune them late in the fall, winter or early in the spring. Although, I never got around to pruning this one and it didn’t seem to mind.

Awesome Limelight Hydrangea!

It is noted for producing large, dense, upright, cone-shaped panicles and is  hardy to Zone 3/4. They can grow to be  8-10 feet tall and can also be trained into a tree shape!

young Limelight Hydrangea blooms

Above is what they look like when they first start to bloom. As they get older and fill out the blooms get ginormous!

Limelight hydrangea planted in 2012

I planted this shrub in the spring of 2012 as you can see in the photo above. That’s it in the pot. The shrub with the white flowers is a rhododendron that died. Just as well-there wouldn’t have been room for both the hydrangea and rhody!

Limelight hydrangeas are easy to grow and grow fast!

That the same little shrub this summer. Limelight is fast growing! This one does get a lot of early morning sun but is shaded by the barn in afternoon.

Limelight hydrangeas growing against a red barn

Limelight is truly a spectacular hydrangea. I highly recommend it especially if you’ve had problems growing other varieties of hydrangea!

Why you should grow Limelight Hydrangeas. They're really the perfect flowering shrub!

Vegetable Garden Tour 2014

Hi everyone! I have a pictured filled vegetable garden tour for you today. I took tons of photos since this will probably be my last year of gardening here since we will be listing our house in a few weeks. I thought I’d share a few with you. This is very bittersweet…I’m ready to move but I’d like to take my yard with me :)

Vegetable garden tour

I didn’t plant as much as I usually do since I think we won’t really be around to harvest much of it.  I also got a late start because I had some other things to finish up (like my deck). So the garden is not as far a long as it normally would be this time of year.

A Cultivated Nest Raised Bed Vegetable Garden

My Vegetable Garden

growing cantaloupe in a raised bed

I’m getting lots of cantaloupes this year! You never know what will do well :) Still no zucchini! I always laugh when people say that zucchini is the easiest thing to grow!

tomatoes planted in a raised bed with marigolds and basil

I’m not growing many tomatoes this year so I put them all in this bed with some marigolds, basil and micro greens (at the other end). The tomatoes in the front are romas. If you want to know how I plant my tomatoes you can check out my post here.

potting area in vegetable garden

I moved my potting bench into the garden when I did a back door area makeover. My daughter and I built this paver patio one summer.

container garden

I planted a few things in pots so I could take some veggies with me.

potting bench with a sink

My husband built me this potting bench out of salvaged wood ( link here).  It’s really wonderful – so large and it has a sink! There’s a bucket underneath the sink to catch water – which is great not only when rinsing vegetables but also when it rains.

growing eggplant in a raised bed

I only planted this one eggplant this year.

banana peppers companion planted with eggplant

peppers companion planted with eggplant

I have lots of different peppers. Which I companion planted with eggplant and cucumber in one raised bed.

bean teepee

The beginning of a bean teepee. This first planting didn’t grow so these are ones I replanted a few weeks back. There’s a pumpkin plant in that bed as well.

I also have a  herb bed. I grow my most used herbs in a container on my deck (link here) so they’re easy to get when I’m cooking . The bed in the garden has mint, dill, thyme, and lemon balm.

There’s also one bed devoted to greens – swiss chard, 2 types of kale and some lettuce.

compost area in the vegetable garden

The compost area.

vegetable garden seating area

A seating area. You can see more of that in this post (link here)

And there are  lots of flowers!

teacup birdfeeder in  clump of zinnias

I like to just let the flowers that pop up stay where they are.

carrots gone to seed make pretty "flowers"

That white puffy flower is actually a carrot that popped up outside this bed gone to seed. So pretty!

flowers in the vegetable garden

I hope you enjoyed seeing some of the garden. I’m going to be doing a video tour of the garden in a week or so that I’ll post to YouTube but I’ll let you all know when that is ready.

Have a great weekend!

New Seating Area In The Veggie Garden

Hi everyone! We’re still plugging away at projects here. But I wanted to share with you a new seating area in my vegetable garden. Some of you may remember that my daughter and I built a paver patio in the veggie garden a few years ago (link here).

A pretty seating in a vegetable garden

Anyway, we moved my potting bench into the garden onto that patio when we re-did our back door area (link here). Plus I took out my strawberry bed and my reclaimed door garden shed. So I had a big open space that I felt needed to be filled with something. So I decided to stage it as a little seating area. I used furniture I already had. I only bought some new seat cushions from Target and solar light/plant hanger from Big Lots.

Let me show you around. I’m really happy with how it turned out!

Entrance into the vegetable garden

As you walk into the vegetable garden you go past our blueberry bushes to your right (we took down the blueberry hut as well link here if you want to see what it looked like).

garden display of coleus, old shutter, old bench and plate flower

This little bench is from a picnic table set we first had when we moved to this house. The shutter I’ve had for a while. I have two- one I actually finished re-painting and it hangs in my screened in porch. Don’t remember where I got the wire basket from but I painted Home Sweet Home on the front.  It’s filled with some coleus (which I really like because they are super easy to propagate). The dish flower is from Cracker Barrel.

old french door repurposed in a garden

This is the door from my garden shed which I’m repurposing as garden art. I was going to hang a window box on it but decided that I didn’t want to damage it since I’d like to reuse it at some point.  The blue pots in iron hangers I’ve had forever. They’re planted with some potato vine. Love their chartreuse color!

blue transferware in an old iron planter

I used to keep some garden tools in this iron planter. Now it’s filled with some blue transferware that I don’t use any more. The blackberry vine is from blackberry bushes I have growing on the outside of the fence.

a concrete chicken in the vegetable garden

The only chicken I have :)

seating area in the vegetable garden

The view is pretty nice from this seating area and it’s a great place to take a break from weeding!

looking out onto the vegetable garden

Tour of the garden coming soon!

zinnias growing in the vegetable garden

Apple Trees That I Grow In Pots

Love apples but don’t have room for an apple tree in your yard? Grow a Columnar Apple tree in a pot!  I do have a mini orchard in my backyard but I was fascinated by the idea of these fruit trees a few years ago and ordered two from Stark Bros.com (there are lots of other places that sell these trees).

Columnar apple trees are great  for balconies, patios or urban gardens where you don't have room to plant a tree in the ground.

These trees are created to mostly grow up (like columns) not out so they’re perfect for a patio, balcony, urban garden or any space where you don’t have room to grow even a dwarf variety of fruit tree. They fruit on the main trunk on spurs, but if you let some of the side branches grow you get a sort of tall apple bush!

columnar apple trees grow up not out. Making them perfect for small space garden areas!

These grow between 7′-9′ tall and you can plant them in the ground but they do well in whiskey barrels. I bought mine several years ago and these are not self-pollinating. I don’t know if they offer a variety that is these days. But that’s something to remember. If it’s not self-pollinating you’ll need two. I’ve had these for about 4 years (when you first get them they just look like sticks!)

Columnar apple tree planted in pots

I was using them as a screen to block the view of the compost bins (there are 3 in a row) since we had a seating area to the left of the trees.

apples on a Columnar Apple Tree

But now I’m just glad that I’ll have some apple trees that produce when we move! I can’t remember what varieties my two apple trees are. But if you’re interested in this type of tree you can search Columnar fruit tree .

You can get other varieties besides apple like plum, cherry, peach, pear etc!

Back Door Area Makeover

Well I’m finally starting to see the light with some of our outdoor projects! Just in time too. It’s already hot early in the morning so soon working outside at any time is not going to be happening. Let me show you what we did with the area outside our back door.

Beautiful back door area makeover with lots of budget friendly ideas!

I finished painting the gingerbread screen door we installed and the door behind it.  I’m excited that I  can cross that off my many painting projects list! This is just an in stock wood screen door from Home Depot. It already has all the gingerbread trim on it. (If we were staying here you know I would have painted that door more than one color :) )

wooden screen door before and after makeover

I used to have my potting bench here that my husband made me out of reclaimed pallets and wood. Which worked for me but we didn’t think most people would be happy to see a huge bench outside the backdoor. So we moved the potting bench into the garden (I’ll show you the new potting area soon) and used a lot of what we had to make this cute little seating area.

Pretty outdoor seating area by a back door -aqua screen door and containers with topiaries

The glider I found at Goodwill many years ago and it was on our patio so we just moved it here. As you can imagine, I have lots of pots!

renew your old resin pots with spray paint!

I’ve had these resin containers for probably 10 years or more! All I did was 1. wash the dirt off the outside, 2.then a couple of light coats of spray paint ( Rustoleum Aqua). Then I 3.sanded the raised areas to let the original tan color show through a bit and I have new pots!

I did buy the topiaries but since they’re planted in pots they will be coming with me when we move. They’re underplanted with yellow Portulaca (which is heat and drought tolerant).

fun outdoor pillows and doormat complete the look for this back door makeover

I bought two outdoor cushions from Garden Ridge and a new door mat from Target. I also had to special order shutters for the window above the glider. It’s an odd size but they weren’t too pricey. I think they were $35 for 2 from Home Depot.  They match the other shutters on the house and give this area a finished look.

We also invested in some rubber patio pavers so we wouldn’t have to trim around and under the glider and pots when mowing the lawn. These we just set on top of the ground – no digging required!

pretty outdoor seating area makeover with lots of great ideas

I have a few hydrangeas next to this area. This one isn’t in bloom yet, but I think this area will look even prettier when they’re in bloom!

How To Grow Bell Peppers & 10 Delicious Bell Pepper Recipes

Bell peppers are usually so expensive in the grocery store that it’s one of those plants that you should try to grow yourself if you can.  I’ve grown them in containers and in raised beds and both methods have worked for me.

How to grow bell peppers and 10 bell pepper recipes

 Tips for Growing Bell Peppers

Bell peppers are a long season plant, so they require patience from gardeners before anything is ready to harvest in late summer, especially if you want red, yellow or orange peppers since green bell peppers are actually immature fruit.

Thankfully though, if you love peppers and want to be able to harvest a large number, each plant is able to produce multiples. Plants do not require a lot of growing space so you can pack a lot into a single bed, or like I said,  grow them in pots.

how to grow bell peppers

Setting Up Your Garden
Bell peppers like loose, well drained soil, so make sure that the soil in the garden bed or containers is not dense and heavy. Add nutrients to the soil with organic fertilizer or organic compost, that is well mixed in. Because bell peppers are vigorous growers, they need to be in a garden space that is located in full sun for at least eight hours out of the day.

Starting Vegetables
You can start bell peppers as seeds. You need to start your seeds 8-10 weeks before your last frost date. Then bring them out into the garden once all chance of frost has passed. Transplants are easier and can be added to a warm garden bed spaced approx 10-18 inches a part (check your tags)  or 1 per square if you’re doing Square Foot Gardening.

Caring and Maintaining Peppers
Bell peppers do not require a lot of oversight before they begin to flower and bear fruit. Water thoroughly and regularly but don’t overwater the plants. Pepper roots do not like to be wet all the time and rotting will occur at the base of plants that are left to grow in soil that is constantly moist. So allow the soil to dry between watering.

Bell peppers are good companions to many other plants but do not plant with the brassica family. I like to plant peppers with tomatoes, basil and eggplants as companions.   Support your plants with cages or stakes because they’ll start to bend once they are heavy with  fruit.

Tips for growing bell peppers

Harvesting Peppers
Once the peppers begin to flower they will begin to bear fruit.  There are always going to be peppers that are ready to begin growing, or are in the middle of growth, so it is important that you carefully remove each fruit from the stem. Use sharp scissors or a knife to cut your peppers off the stem, avoiding damage to the plant. The longer you let a pepper mature the sweeter it will taste.

If you have too many peppers to use at one time, they are easily frozen or dried.

10 Delicious Bell Pepper Recipes

  1. Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers
  2. Chicken Fajita Stuffed Bell Peppers
  3. Roasted Red Pepper Potato Soup
  4. Marinated Red Bell Peppers
  5. Hawaiian Style Sweet & Sour Pineapple and Bell Peppers
  6. Shrimp with Bell Peppers and Swiss Chard
  7. Crock Pot Beef Stuffed Peppers 
  8. Jalapeno Mac & Cheese Stuffed Peppers
  9. Roast Chicken with Balsamic Bell Peppers
  10. Turkey Stuffed Bell Peppers

You might also like to check out my Gardening 101 Series

Gardening 101 Series: How to start a vegetable garden

10 Amazing Flower Tower/Tipsy Pot Planter Ideas!

I think flower towers or tipsy pots are such a stunning way to add vertical interest to your garden, porch, or front entry. But not only that, they also are a great way to add a bit of whimsy! Here are 10 awesome ideas for making flower towers or tipsy pot planters.

10 amazing flower tower & tipsy pot ideas

10 Flower Tower or Tipsy Pot Planter Ideas

tiered flower pots from The Kim Six Fix (flower tower roundup)

I love this flower tower from The Kim Six Fix because she made the whole thing for under $10 and so cute!

galvanized tipsy tower (round up of flower towers)

This insanely amazing galvanized tipsy pot is from  Annie Steen at Flea Market Gardening

Flower tower by House by Hoff (flower tower roundup)

House by Hoff used terracotta pots that she painted to make this beauty.

colorful tipsy pots by Tiaras & Bowties (flower tower roundup)

I like how Tiaras & Bowties used these cute colorful pots for her tipsy tower

flower tower by  Simply Desiging

Simply Designing filled this pretty flower tower with pansies for spring but you could do the same with summer flowers.

Tipsy Tower by Daydreaming Bliss (roundup of flower towers)

Love the color of the pots in this tipsy tower by Daydreaming Bliss

address flower tower

You could put your house numbers on a pot like this one via Flickr or vinyl lettering!

succulent tower by Sow & Dipity (flower tower round up)

Love Sow & Dipity’s version using succulents!

Stacked planters by Home Jelly (flower tower round up)

Love, love, love these stacked planters from Home Jelly!

Galvanized tipsy pots by The Pink Hammer (flower tower round up)

This totally amazing galvanized tipsy pot planter is from The Pink Hammer.

So many great projects and they’re not hard to do!

My Tips For Growing Bigger Better Tomatoes

A perfectly ripe home grown tomato warmed by the sun is NOTHING like the ones you get in the grocery store (as most of you know that grow tomatoes)!  I planted some tomatoes recently and wanted to share with you a few tips that I hope will improve your chances for growing bigger & healthier tomatoes.

Tips for growing bigger healthier tomatoes

I think most gardeners have their own tricks and tips for growing certain things and you’re welcome to share yours in the comments.  Being a gardener means always learning something new!

Tips for growing bigger & better tomatoes

1. I remove the peat pot unless I see that the roots have already grown through the pot because I’ve dug up a few plants where those type of pots haven’t disintigrated. At the very least remove the rim of the pots (the part that sticks up past the soil line. If you don’t, the peat pots won’t retain water and they’ll dry out (drying up the roots of your plant).

tomato plant with peat pot removed

2. Plant deep!  Planting your tomatoes deep creates a stronger root system . There are two ways you can plant deep. One is to make a long trench and lay your tomato plant on it’s side (remove all the leaves that will be buried). Cover the tomato with soil only leaving  the very top  of the plant exposed.

3. The way I like to plant deep is to dig a deep hole and plant my tomato plant as you normally would just really deep (remove all the leaves that will be buried) so that the remaining leaves are above the ground but not touching the dirt. I actually tested both ways of planting deep a few years ago with the same variety of tomato and planting vertically worked better for me. The tomato I planted deep but vertically did much better than the one I planted on it’s side. But give both a try and see which one works best for you.

tomato stripped of lower leaves and planted deep

4. Give them a good start by putting a few crushed egg shells and some banana peel at the bottom of the hole.  Egg shells add calcium and are supposed to help prevent blossom end rot and banana peel is supposed to add potassium & help with overall plant vigor. (some people use powdered milk instead of egg shells but I’ve never tried that).

tomato planted with banana peel and egg shells

6. Prune the bottom leaves. It encourages growth and reduces diseases. Don’t let any leaves touch the dirt.

tomato planting tips

7. I fertilize my tomatoes with fish emulsion and seaweed feed every few weeks or so. Some people like to also use a few tablespoons of epsom salts and coffee grounds, but I haven’t tried that yet.

tomatoes companion planted with lettuce in a raised bed

8. I always plant my tomatoes with marigolds to prevent nematodes. I don’t know if it really works but I can say that I’ve never had a nematode problem and I like having flowers in the garden anyway.  As you can see, I’m not planting intensively like I usually do since the garden is more for show this year (our house will be on the market next month).

bowl of homegrown cherry tomatoes

Just remember that tomatoes are really sensitive to weather! No matter what you do you might run into problems if it rains too much or not enough, or it’s  too hot or you have sudden temperature fluctuations. Those things are just beyond your control.  But it does help if you have strong plants to begin with!

What are your planting tips?

Gardening 101 Series

Saturday In The Garden & Some Projects We’re Working On

Hi everyone!  I have lots of  lovely blooms in my garden right now and we’re working on a few different projects. So I have a few photos to share with you this weekend.  I’ll start with a a couple of things that are in bloom.

Endless Summer Hydrangeas

A lot of my hydrangeas are in bloom! These are Endless Summer.

climbing roses on the front porch

All the roses are in bloom

orange asiatic lilies

These crazy orange asiatic lilies are huge!

Some projects were working on:

unpainted gingerbread screen door

We put in this gingerbread screen door last weekend. Isn’t it pretty! I’m painting it this weekend and the door behind it if the weather holds. I’m thinking I’ll paint the screen door the same color I painted my garden gate and I’ll  paint the door behind it and the other door in garage that leads to the downstairs white.  Actually – I really want to paint the door behind it and the other door in the garage yellow.  Wouldn’t that be pretty! That blue with yellow behind it.

Martha Stewart Robin's Egg blue walls

We had new windows put in the masterbedroom and bath 2 weeks ago so now I’m ready to paint those two rooms. The bedroom is Martha Stewart Robin’s Egg Blue and we’ve been advised by a few Realtor’s that it needs to be toned down. So I’m painting it a grey or greige.  The bathroom is yellow (what isn’t in this house :) ) and I’ll choose a really light grey for that one.

garden seating area to be

I took out my strawberry bed and my little garden shed fell over during a storm so I had this big empty space in the corner of the vegetable garden. So I decided to move things around a bit and I’m working on a little seating area under this crepe myrtle instead of the paver patio my daughter and I built a few years ago (that’s a potting area and my container garden now – more on that to come). The door is from my garden shed and I have a few cute ideas for that – gotta do something with that shutter – it’s been sitting in the garden for a few years now. The picnic table bench is getting a new coat of paint and a few other fun things will be happening in that corner.

I also planted my vegetable garden which I’ll post about another day.

So that’s kind of what’s been going on here plus we’re slowly decluttering. We’ve lived here over 10 years and you know I have a lot of stuff! I want to have less stuff! Actually what I want is to just have stuff I REALLY love. I was going to have a big garage sale but I just don’t have time, maybe before we actually have to move. I’ve been giving things away to friends, neighbors and the Goodwill instead.

I realized I can’t do everything and stay sane and healthy!

Have a great weekend!

DIY Saturday: How To Make A Garden In A Bag Of Soil

This is an amazing and simple way to set up a new garden bed or even to have a little garden if you don’t have much space.  Gardening in a bag of soil is not a new idea (I’ve seen people plant vegetables in a bag of dirt) but I’ve never seen it used in such large scale.  Gardening in a bag of topsoil makes setting up a new garden bed so quick and easy!

How to set up a new garden bed using bags of dirt #nodig_garden

I would definitely give this a try if I was setting up a new annual bed (at the very least the grass under the bags would be killed and the following season you could plant in the ground if you want). This is a great no-dig garden!


Bedding plants

Bags of topsoil or potting mix




Go here  or here to see the full instructions of how to plant in a bag (one is the original tutorial and one is a follow up)


Have a great weekend!

Painted Bench Makeover For The Deck

About  17 years ago my husband and I were walking through Target and I saw a bench that was on clearance. This was my first ever clearance purchase at Target! I can still remember how excited I was that I found it because we had just purchased our first house and money was tight. But this was something I could afford, it had a little bit of storage and it was perfect for my entry way. The stars aligned that day!

Painted bench makeover - the after

Fast forward 3 years-we sold that house and purchased this house and I didn’t have anywhere to put my bench…so it sat on my back patio….for years and years… and years. But now I spruced up my bench with a little paint and put it on my newly stained deck  and it’s perfect! (I’m taking down my curtains in the screened porch to wash them and was too lazy to move the ladder out of the shot).

Painted Bench Makeover

My husband needs someplace to sit when he’s grilling and I used to have a little red bistro set on the deck for that purpose. But I thought this bench would be much more comfortable for him.

painted bench with storage

Plus the seat lifts up and it’s a perfect place to stash his grilling tools (and get them out of my kitchen)!

Black painted bench on deck - before and after makeover

I used some black exterior paint I already had to paint it.  I decided to go with black for a variety of reasons. The deck color is called cedar but when it’s wet it can look almost pumpkin? Sometimes it looks brown sometimes it looks more orange – depends on the light (my husband is not fond of it but I’m not re-doing it).  Black was a color that looked good with the deck color. Also, you see the deck from a big picture window in the kitchen and my floors are black and white and my counters are black. So it helps to tie the two spaces together.

white garden bench

Here’s the before. It originally was some type of blond wood and I painted it white when we moved to this house.

container herb garden with washi tape herb markers

Next to the bench (on the other side of the steps leading to the backyard) is my container herb garden that I showed you how I planted here.

fern potted in a black urn

This potted fern is going to go next to the door leading into the screened in porch.

The deck is done! Yay one project is completed. Only about 20 more left to go before we can list this house! :)

My Tips For Planting A One Pot Container Herb Garden

Growing your own herbs is a great way to save money at the grocery store.  I have a vegetable garden but I always have a planter of my most used cooking herbs on my deck for convenience (it’s right outside of my kitchen).  Growing herbs in containers is a great idea if you don’t have room for a garden – you can grow them on your deck (like me), a patio or a balcony.
6 Great tips for planting a container herb garden. This is a great idea for patios, decks, and balconies!

You could plant each herb in a separate pot but why not plant them in a one pot container herb garden.  Here are 6 tips to help you get started with planting your very own container garden!

1. Use transplants – you’ll be able to harvest sooner if you use seedlings from your garden center.  Some herbs are hard to grow from seed so transplants are a good way to start herb gardening especially if you’re a beginner.

Using transplants for a container herb garden

2. Use good potting soil that drains well not soil from your yard.

3.  Choose the right pot. If you’re planting several different herbs in one pot you need to give our plants some room to grow. So choose an appropriate pot size. Also, I know galvanized tubs are popular to plant in but they get hot and dry out quickly in my Zone (7b) so depending on where you are located, you may need to water them more frequently. Same thing with dark colored pots.

4. I use old soda cans & pine cones  to fill the bottom of my large pots. That way I don’t have to fill the entire pot with soil and the pot isn’t too heavy.  They’re easy to remove if at the end of the season you want to dump your dirt out.  You can also use packing peanuts. I find them horribly messy when you need to dump the soil from a pot  unless you contain them in a mesh bag or something first, so I don’t use them. Fill your pot with soil. Then get to planting!

rosemary planted in a container herb garden

5.  Grow what you like to use. Technically you should plant the herbs that like to dry out in between watering together (like rosemary and thyme) in one pot and the ones like parsley and chives that like constant moisture in another pot. But I’ve been planting  all my herbs together for years and never had a problem.

6. Herbs  need a good amount of sun – 6 hours or so.  If you live some place with very hot summers they may need to be shaded mid day. That’s why I put my large pots on casters so I can move them around as needed.

basil planted in a container garden

This pot has rosemary, lavender, sage, basil, curly leaf parsley & flat leaf parsley.  I have a raised bed in my vegetable garden where I grow more herbs but these are ones we use all the time for cooking.

Tips for Plant A Container Herb Garden

Here is the same pot a few weeks later!

container herb garden

The Washi Tape Herb Markers makers were easy to make!

DIY Washi Tape Herb Markers

You can use paint sticks  (I just happened to find a gardening gift set at Goodwill that had plant markers in it) and paint them the color of your choice. You’ll also need Washi Tape and a permanent marker.

DIY Washi Tape Herb Markers

I wrapped Washi Tape around the top (I chose black since my container is black), write the name of the the plant, wrap more Washi Tape under the plant name (seal if you like but I didn’t seal mine). That’s all!

growing lavender in a container

Remember, herbs like being pinched back so the more you pick the more you get!
Tips for planting a container herb garden


Using Color to Unify A Garden – My Blue Garden Gate

A design concept that I use inside my home is to repeat colors to unify spaces.  I’m one of those gardeners that plants a lot of  “I’ll take one of those & gotta a have one of that” plants as something catches my eye at the garden center, instead of planning ahead and planting bunches of the same colored flowers/shrubs so my borders have a more cohesive look.  I decided to apply that same concept to unify my backyard . I do like a more cottage look but at times it can get a little out of control looking! I think that color used with repetition can unify my garden. Since one of my outdoor projects this spring  is to paint the picket fence that goes around my vegetable garden, I started  implementing this idea with one of the gates and a grape arbor.

using color to unify a garden - blue garden gate and garden hose wreath

The fence is still going to be white but I’m going to paint the gates blue and distribute this color (various shades of this color) throughout my backyard. I still need to paint the back of this gate, but I put my garden hose wreath on it to see how it looks and I love it. That’s not it’s permanent spot  – I think it needs to move down a bit and I may add a ribbon to it. But I think it’s perfect for my newly blue (Cool Water Lake by Behr) garden gate!

blue garden gate to the vegetable garden

I’ve got  a lot of weed pulling and rose trimming to do as well. I have to get on  a ladder to cut back that red Knockout Rose – it’s huge!

blue arbor & Knockout Rose

I just picked out some details to paint on this arbor. It has a grapevine growing on it and I might plant some morning glories at the base as well.

blue trellis behind a pink Knockout Rose

I painted this trellis behind the pink Knockout rose last year (it has a white clematis growing on it).

Spiderworth & Lady Banks rose

I do have a nice swath of blue here because of this self-seeded Spiderwort.

blue gate to the vegetable garden

I think that blue is a pretty color in a garden – it brings the blue of the sky down and is a nice cool contrast with some of the “hot” colors of the flowers I have planted.

Now I just have to spread it around! :)





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