30 July, 2014

Summer Time And The Living Is Easy

I have had a love affair with this exotic canna lily for years. I don't take them out of the pots for the winter and every so often they freeze to mush. I just buy more. I adore their red & ruby striped leaves and then about now, they pop into huge orange blossoms.

This is our back patio with the pergola above and the hanging baskets. We sit out here in the shade (clematis (montana) above), sip our gin & tonics, eat dinners out here.
When we built the house many moons ago, we wanted something beyond the concrete slab. I checked out all the gardening structure books from the library and we had Bill & Ted (our excellent builders!) put up this 'open to the sky' pergola. When the clematis covers it, you don't even get drips on misty rainy days.
There is room for the BBQ, patio table, swing, and, at the time, also room for the kids to ride their bikes past without banging into us.
A great place for entertaining.

This is a hydrangea that jumped into my cart a few years back that is conical in shape. It used to be more ruby red but in my soil, its more white with pink. I need to add something like epsom salts - or whatever(?), to see if I can get the ruby red color back.

Another new flower (dang - forgot name) that is stunning in a patio pot. I have a pink candy striped geranium, ruby diascia, and a coral coleus in there too. Beautiful pot.

Looking towards runway on left, covered blueberry (still producing).
We had some terrific freezes last winter and as a result, no aphids on my stunning fuscia ( pot on bench by the first post).

It's behaving.
I don't know about you, but if I forget to water a fuscia one lousy day, its covered in aphids the next and it's all downhill from there.

This is trio of pots leading up to patio door on left. The sidewalk angles in here.
Need more Cannas!

Probably my favorite hanging basket this year. The peach Million Bells next to the deep purple verbena. Mmmm.

I gave myself permission NOT to have a garden this year. Keeping up with my acre, and my always increasing workload, I decided it was okay that my tomatoes are 'thriving' in their 4" pots.

Left hand side of the patio door.

I like my baskets to last well into the fall, so I make them myself. When you buy an already blooming hanging basket in May, it's already root-bound. This means you have to water it twice a day and its pretty much gone by mid-July. I bought these rubbermaid hanging basket pots over 20 years ago. They have a water reservoir at the bottom - if you forget to water, there's still some by the roots.
On our hot July & August days in the Willamette Valley (very little rain), these pots allow me to water once a day or even, every other day.
Most other plastic pots get brittle under the sun's UV rays.
I change out the soil every year and I use Osmocote or other time-release fertilizer in them.

I'm not one of those people who matchy-match everything. My happy dance revolves around happy accidents. Look at this peppermint impatient and the ruby diascia. There's a deep red coleus in there too but the impatients are keeping him checked.
I buy plants that I like and then put them together but without an overall theme.
I might buy fabric that way too.

A trip of pots containing a Japanese green maple, hanging Ivy geranium basket that never got hung, and the new flowers on the right which I already forgot the name of but have been blooming their heads off since May. and show no signs of stopping.


Summertime, And the livin' is easy
Fish are jumpin'  And the cotton is high
Oh, Your daddy's rich, And your mamma's good lookin'
So hush little baby, now Don't you cry.

One of these mornings, You're going to rise up singing,
Then you'll spread your wings, And you'll take to the sky.
But until that morning, There's a'nothing can harm you,
With your daddy and mammy,  standing by.


  1. Your garden looks great! We have a covered patio too: not as tidy as yours, and a but smaller, but enough that we can eat out there and hang washing out even when it rains! I love it

  2. What a wonderful tour of your patio and garden. I love all the color you have added through the use of pots. We are working on our own landscaping here in Tucson which will feature drought tolerant bushes, cactus, and agave.

  3. What a great tour of your garden! It looks like an oasis!

  4. Wow, your garden and plants are so beautiful, colorful and lush! Good job! Thank you SO much for the bells.. how very kind and generous of you! They work perfectly I'm about to do a post and show how they turned out.

    *T*H*A*N*K* * *Y*O*U*!*!*!*

    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)


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