Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Outdoor Wednesday : Garden Before and Afters

Thank you to Susan at A Southern Day Dreamer for hosting yet another wonderful Outdoor Wednesday! Make sure to find the link to her blog at the bottom of this post so that you can enjoy all of the other wonderful garden and park pictures other bloggers have shared today!

Gardening, I've found, is a process. Like an interior, designing the exterior landscape of your home is a series of fantastic ideas paired with the misfortune of "what was I thinking!?" Last week, when I featured the beautiful garden of my friends Dorothy and Dan, Dorothy and I got a chance to look back through the many photos of my garden, and it's journey from blah, to "Eh - I'll live with it for a while!"

Here, a "blah" that I was SO happy with at the time. This photo was taken at the 2008 Garden Walk, just about a year ago. All of the planting was new, including the trees. I was so excited about this "new" garden because there was absolutely nothing there before. This sort of mess, was a project that I had envisioned and completed, and even though it's not as pretty as it could have been, it helped add something to the landscape, and it allowed me to catch that elusive "Gardening Bug" which - hurled me into this year with a bigger and better plan, to add, change, and extend!

So when the snow had melted, and the gardening mafia said it was ok to start planting - I pounced, and snapped the picture above before extending the garden to include the picture below.

Quite a change, huh? Now, certainly I didn't leave it this way, but as the "summer" started to pass us, I noticed that the temperatures never really rose, it continued to feel like spring, and the rain never seemed to stop. I've heard that it's the coldest July on record, not good for the tender root systems of new perennials. And, on top of that, my tropical canna and banana are just as unhappy. Still, though it's not as established as I would prefer it to be at this time, the extension has grown (in roughly a month and a half) to be quite nice:

Here you can see the full curve of the new bed and how it meets up with the prior peninsula. Earl is right at home over there in the corner next to the banana, which is actually much larger than when this picture was taken in early July.

And the photo from the day after the garden walk, a full year from the photo at the very top of the page, I think we've accomplished a lot. It's certainly got more presence, don't you think? Again, thanks for stopping by and leaving your kind thoughts on all of these pictures in their prior posts, and make sure to head back over to Susan's blog: A Southern Day Dreamer for more inspiring outdoor landscapes!
On a separate note: Color Outside the Lines will be going through a few changes in the next few days, so if you link in and see things a bit askew, it's ok! You're in the right place! Pardon my dust while I renovate!


  1. I just love progress photos and the transformation is fabulous, Artie - look how big those trees are getting?! It all looks beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.
    xo Isa

  2. It's all beautiful, Artie, but that last photo....WOW!! Love it!

  3. One of the best things about gardening is watching it grow and change . . . your garden is amazing!

  4. You have done an outstanding job in a short while, Artie...Love it!

  5. It is filling in beautifully!

  6. You are so right about gardening going through a process and changes.

    I have made changes each year now in my perennial beds. I will likely not stop because every year I can see that something would go better elsewhere or the textures of certain plants compliment each other.

    You are doing a very lovely job there at your place. Very nice.

    Becky K.
    Hospitality Lane

  7. Artie--Gardening is good practice in learning patience! It certainly isn't instant gratification but the rewards are worth it! Earl looks very pleased with the progress! Beautiful!

  8. It's not a process,but an addiction.
    "Wouldn't this look better there?"
    kinda thing.
    It's all in just knowing when to quit.When you think it's perfect, take one thing away.....
    You have a designer's eye.

  9. What a great transformation, Artie! Must be nice to sit out there just to stare at this beautiful garden..Christine

  10. Wow, seeing the pictures right next to each other like that really makes you realize just how much your plants have grown and filled out. Earl must be so happy in his new home.

    Can't wait to see the changes your blog will be going through!

    Justine :o )

  11. Lookin' good, Artie. Things are really growing and your garden is taking shape. You know, "they" say that it takes about three years for a garden to be at it's best. I like you larger pix, I have to attempt that. I know that Susan and BNOTP gave us instructions, I have to go back and get them. Is it an easy process? ~ Robyn

  12. The garden is beautiful but that last photo is a stunner. I hope you are having a great day.

  13. Your garden is beautiful! I love the mix of flowers, they are so pretty. Your hard work has paid off!

    Thank you for your kind comment on my blog!

  14. Artie,thank you so much for your kind comments on my photoblog. It's brand-new, and of course praise makes me glow! YOUR blog is amazing.. it's going to take me days to go through and absorb everything that's here. I am "design-challenged" when it comes to decorating my home and grounds; maybe a little of your "dust" as you change things around can fall on me! I'm putting your link on my sidebar so I can find you easily; you have incredible talent!
    Pam D

  15. Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and for such sweet comments. Your pictures are absolutely beautiful. I love all of the flowers. I am a bit of a flower lover myself! You are very talented. Looking forward to looking around your site even more.

  16. Playing in the dirt is so much fun, especially when things turn out looking so nice. It's been rather wet and cool here in Colorado this spring and summer, too. We even had a killing frost in March that really stunted my Rose of Sharon. But that's one of our challenges here on the eastern plains. Thanks for sharing your progress with us!

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