Thursday, March 27, 2008

Still More Garden-Inspired Ramblings

This morning, I rose quite a bit earlier than usual and was finished with my Morning Prayer/Coffee routine by 9:15!

During my meditation, I was distracted by movement outside the front window. It was an unfamiliar grey kitty, lurking on our front porch and poised to pounce on one of our resident robins. I walked over, jingled the sleigh bells that hang on the door and both cat and robin vanished.

Which leads me to a rather intriquing discovery that TonyP made, when we were switching out the arbors on Saturday.

^ I decided to add a tall japanese fern to this container, for a bit of height.

The jasmine is a favorite nesting spot for robins and, as we were clipping it back, we noted an old nest was still tucked securely among the tangled mass of vines. TonyP was sawing apart the old arbor when something near the old nest caught his eye. He reached into the jasmine and pulled out a cat collar!

Here's the new arbor and freshly-planted containers. I'm also starting a few cuttings from the jasmine. Against the wall, you can see how far along the daylilies are. No spikes yet. >

Evidently, one of the neighborhood felines had been a-hunting robins and become tangled in the vines but the safety collar had come apart, as it was designed to do. When this might have happened - this year, last or the year before - we have no idea.

I'm sorry that I didn't see it happen because I would have loved to have watched a cat climb that arbor!
These pics were taken today, after I spent a few hours playing in the dirt. It was such a lovely, warm day and I couldn't resist!

^ I'm afraid that the pansies that I planted at the feet of S. Francis are a hopeless cause. The deer simply pull them up by the roots! I don't know if the new red hydrangea will far any better but I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Still Feeling All Floral

Mom purchased this fabric when she moved into her townhouse and used it to cover a small, round table in the bedroom. While the room is still done in lilac and lavender, she's dispensed with the table and decided she wanted to have the fabric converted into pillow shams.
My first step was to pull out the hem and stitching from the circular tablecloth. Then, I pressed everything and made up a pattern, based on the dimensions of the pillows. I used a formula from the House Beautiful Seasonal Guide to Decorating with Fabric (long out-of-print) and had to patch together pieces to make up the backs of the shams.
She's bringing the pillows over, later this week, to try them out. I left myself a bit of room to alter the shams, if necessary. But there's almost no fabric left over so - if I have to make adjustments - it'll be tight!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter at the Arboretum

In case you haven't noticed, Spring appears to be underway!

On Easter, TonyP and I wandered over to campus to see how far along the plants and flowers were. We were quite delighted to see a lot of things in bloom - some early and some a bit late. It makes for a delightful mix.

Here's a short walk down the paths of the arboretum - a little touch of Spring to brighten up your day!

That particular saucer magnolia is a rather unassuming tree but blooms with exuberance.

If you care for hellabores, take a seat and rest a while. Hellabores seem to be quite a favourite at this arboretum and there are quite a few varieties.

This flowering quince does, in fact, have blossoms ranging from deep pink to almost-white on the same branches.

I was a bit surprised to see the irises, as mine have yet to send up spikes. We noticed irises blooming in Durham, a couple of weeks ago! I think that the warmth of the pavement and buildings speed them up quite a bit.

Talk about early! There are several of these azaleas that are in full bloom! Most of the ones downtown are budding or just starting to open. (At my house, what azaleas have not been devoured by deer are still barely budding.)