Tuesday, August 24, 2010

~ Climbing Trees ~ Bromeliads





Many years ago riding along the river roads on Florida coast I would see fantastic displays of red flowers. Usually the plants were in the ground where you would expect a blooming plant to be, but often they would actually be growing up the trees that lined the road. The environment was perfect, humidity from the river nearby and it seldom would freeze with the breeze being there off the water.

Although you most often see Bromeliads sold as house plants, they can be grown outside as far "north" as Florida. And there are thousands of types to choose from, with a wide vary of prices. Mine are the most common kind. Simple, pretty and red flowering.

When you purchase bromeliads instead of cut flowers, you certainly get your money's worth. They will last for a long time with just a little care. Buy them before they are in full bloom, just when the flower is emerging. That way it will continue to bloom and you will get the full enjoyment of it. I know you can "baby" them if you live where it is colder and bring them in during the winter and take them back outside once the cold weather passes by. We are lucky and can just stick them in the ground. They can survive a freeze, but do like a tree canopy for some protection.


This area was mostly bare, totally torn up and it was looking pretty bad. One of the few things left the ground was all theses bromeliads. I pulled up a small army of them to replant. When I ran out of steam, I left the ones that were climbing the tree. They remind me of years gone by, both happy tree climbing days, and long rides along the river roads.

A little plant info: ... bromeliads are epiphytes, the same as orchids or staghorn ferns. They like growing up other plants without harming them, but bromeliads can grow in the ground as well. I confess I love them because they require absolutely no attention at all.

~ See Y'All Soon
Donna

Thursday, August 19, 2010

~ Family Room Storage To Love








T
here is one room in the house that I have to agree where it's great to have an abundance of space. Even a little more than you think would be necessary to stuff the whole family in for movies or games, along with the family dog(s) and a few friends.


This room features a secret weapon for keeping even the family room looking clean and uncluttered. A wall of beautifully designed storage housing the entertainment equipment, and the ability to store much more.



I'm a sucker for gorgeous beams in room. The ceiling and wood beams in this house were beautifully executed. When I took this picture I don't remember the middle housing at the fan looking quite as large as it does in this picture. Now I wonder if it was for something more than just the fan.

This house was for an International Builder's Show. So of course the wood built-ins are of high quality both in materials and workmanship. But this is are a great inspiration of using cabinets that you can purchase at the home building centers to create your own perfect storage solution. And it's nice to see wood sometimes without any paint.


~ See Y'All Soon
Donna

Friday, August 13, 2010

~ A Little More Gardening





In the deep, deep south nothing holds up to the heat but the very strong and then it takes water, lots of water. Sweet hubby is holding up better than I am. It is finally bearable about 6:30 at night. Odd time to garden, but I can get twice as much done.
For a while it was nearly impossible to find the more red pentas instead of just the lighter pink. The red goes better with my color combination. What a performer! With the array of tiny star shaped blooms it's always dependable.

I love pots filled with flowers, plants and small trees. This year I got a late start, but the pots are really blooming beautifully after just a few weeks. I forgot how much work they are to keep looking good. Some needed watering more than once day until they got a bit more established. They cannot go one whole day with being tended to with a big drink. Though wonder Disney crews work all night to keep their pots so fabulous.


ThR simple coleus, so pretty. I use them for the quick punch of lime green. Usually he gets deadheaded so that it will last longer and fill out more. But he was determined to bloom. Then I remembered how delicate and lovely those blue shoots of flowers are when it is in bloom.

This little blue/purple guy loves the heat, he just wants enough water to keep from getting too thirsty.

Fortunately I bought a couple large pots years ago. Some days I think that they would look so good painted to look like old concrete. But it would be difficult to turn them back to terracotta. It's tough when you love two (or more) different looks and have to choose.


See Y'All Soon~
Donna

Thursday, August 5, 2010

~ Rosemary & Time, Again... Too Hot To Garden!

When I first posted this it was Jan. Now it's August. How did that happen? It's time to slow time down again. The heat has been a unforgiving, and I know it's not a good time for planting. It's actually more remarkable how many things can take the heat, if you water them twice a day. The small patch of new grass was incredibly perfect, until today. Now it needs some help. I remember why I don't add grass to the landscape. It just seemed to be needed in one place though.

The beautiful rosemary in the picture below was moved outside by the back door for a few months,and did fabulous, until I got busy with other things and just forgot to water it or give it any attention. I'm going to put it in the yard and see if I can nurse it back to health. But getting more herbs planted will have to wait.

For now, a little repost from when the pretty rosemary first came by.
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After holidays, most of us either miss the decorations and ornaments because the house looks empty, or you are thrilled to have less clutter. For me, it feels like a breath of fresh air, and it reminds me to start the year fresh. Time to start anew again.




I love the smell of rosemary. Usually at Christmastime you can find some really pretty cone shaped topiary rosemary plants. (Lowe's, Home Depot and many garden shops carry them.) This one has been sitting on the window sill in the kitchen where I can see when it needs water and it has been doing very well. It's really wonderful in the living room window, but we'll see how long it can stay there without me forgetting to water it.

The pot is terracotta which was painted a few years ago. First I painted it a creamy white, then aged it with some brown/taupe glaze and added a bit of mossy lime green to imitate the moss that would be growing on a pot left outside.

A little word of warning about these Santos cage dolls. I have recently seen them being sold as "vintage" and they are not. Although they look a little older, they are being made today and imported. Sticking a vintage label on them seems to garnish a higher price.

See Y'all Soon~
Donna

Monday, August 2, 2010

~ Outdoor Living Spaces


As I go through the one million and one pictures I've saved over the years, most of the garden and outdoor spaces photos are still beautiful. Unlike decorating inside, outdoor spaces are usually less likely to fall victim to how trends go out of style. Sometimes you can tell an approximate time period from the colors or the materials being used.








(Poynter Landscape & Construction)

This particular outdoor living area will be just as beautiful 20 years from now as it is now. I kept this picture because of the slightly different design of the arbor. The arched piece joining the sides is really a nice detail. We are using pavers right now too, so I was happy to find this picture with this lovely step design.

See Y'All Soon~
Donna