For the most part, I garden in the back yard. But out front there’s a tiny patch I’ve been working on, as well. I thought I might offer some photos that Tom took for me yesterday morning of that little space.
The garden isn’t much- it’s a little patch of landscaping that sits directly in front of my art studio window. When we built the house, the original landscaping included a full-grown yellow hibiscus and surrounded it with Mexican Petunias, which always looked really wrong to me. (And this is *so* ironic, considering I’m now obsessed with traditional petunias…)
At some point I decided that I would like to turn the little patch into a butterfly garden, so Tom went out and pulled all the Petunias, and has been adding plants for me, one at a time, around the hibiscus, which I *do* like.
I grow plants in my container garden out back, and when they are big enough (or TOO big), Tom takes them out front and plants them for me.
Right now we have the original hibiscus, another hibiscus I added in (Sprinkle Rain), a miniature rose, jasmine, milkweed, some pink vinca, and two terra cotta planters (one on each side of the garage) with a shrimp plant and a hydrangea.
The shrimp plant is from a small cutting off my original shrimp plant, which was the first plant I bought for my garden three years ago. It’s now HUGE- in fact, I cut it down to the stem today in a fit of frustration, and I’m hoping it will bounce back a little less tall and gangly, and a little more compact and full.
There’s also some crown of thorns that I actually started growing back at our condo, way back in 2000. The one crown of thorns plant has turned into about twenty- and our landscapers always split it up and replant it around the yard. I think it’s kinda neat that something I started growing way back when now makes up a big part of our landscaping.
At some point, the original yellow hibiscus grew in a really crazy way, so Tom trimmed it back. All the way back. He left one set of leaves on it, to be exact. It scared the crap out of me when he did it, but I know from experience that hibiscus plants will bounce back as long as the branch is green at the cutting site, so I took a deep breath and kept an eye on it. Now it’s sort of this puff of a bush and I have to say, even though I am NOT a fan of severely trimmed bushes and trees, I kinda like it. I get a lot more light in my studio, and there’s more space around it for other plants. And it’s starting to bloom again.
We have three bird feeders in the little garden, so there’s almost always birds crowded in the space. When anyone comes to our front door, it’s a little intense because all the birds hidden within the bushes and around the ground the space will take off at one time. For instance, the poor UPS guy will be walking up to our house, and all of the sudden 40 or so birds will FLY at him from that tiny patch. It’s very disconcerting. I kinda feel bad about it, but I like having the birds come visit.
We now “recognize” a lot of the individual birds, so it’s really nice for me to look out the window and see a particular dove or Woody, the cardinal who has been visiting us for years. And it’s always exciting when new birds come, like when the blue jays came a few weeks ago. I’m hoping for more.