As you may have noticed, my blog has undergone a few cosmetic changes. Nothing to worry about….just trying to streamline and revamp the overall look with the aim of expanding topics and tutorials! I am slowly starting to get back into the blogging swing of things and have planned a few fun posts and videos to come out over the summer – as long as nap times stay consistent (you know #MOMLIFE!) More details and such will make their way over the next few weeks, but in the meantime, I hope you enjoy today’s post.
It is half way through June and I finally feel that summer is officially here! My gardens are overall doing well…although I have certainly fretted and fussed over my kitchen garden sprouts. While I may not be able to spend hour upon hour in the garden, I can definitely squeeze in a solid twenty minutes after my daughter goes to bed. And nothing feels more therapeutic then slipping into garden shoes and my garden apron. Although based on my neighbors reactions and gentle ribbing, it feels as though I am the only person in the world who wears an apron to garden. I suppose I may be the minority, but it sure beats having to change into “work” clothes which can mean a loss of precious gardening minutes. So I proudly don my apron, step into my small yet efficiently designed garden, and weed away!
Are you looking for a garden apron? I’ve rounded up a few of my favorites!
I promise myself every year that I will plant bulbs in the fall, and this year I am doing it! I always have good intentions, and then the weather gets away from me and I am stuck with another year of a brown garden in the spring.
Not this year! 🙂
As I began researching which bulbs to plant, where, and at what time, I was amazed at the variety of resources available, in addition to some wonderful vintage advice. So I thought I would share my findings with all of you!
Now Is the Time to Plant Your Bulbs by Helen Van Pelt Wilson
“Gardens are ruled by a gay triumvirate – bulbs, perennials, and annuals – but in the spring the glorious flowering bulb is the mightiest of the three garden kings.
In long loved drifts blossoming bulbs will glorify even a tin garden from February until June and, if lilies are included, there will be scattered flowering far into September. Planted with such bright ground covers as forget-me-nots, pansies, English daisies, hardy candytuft, and yellow alyssum, bulbs will create such spring beauty as is breath-taking in its swift, exciting gayety after the dull gray days of winter.
Yet long before spring the thoughtful gardener must plant bulbs. Through the autumn she must tuck into the soil these surest of nature’s promises – for good bulbs can absolutely be counted on to bloom. Within its plum brown skin, each carries an embryo blossom with enough food to nourish it for a season.
Many of the smaller kinds are appealingly pretty for the very early garden. Snowdrops bloom in March or early April, while the bright yellow crocus, grape hyacinth, and Scilla Sibrica carry on into May.
Of the larger bulbs the narcissus family blooms first. In this group are the white, cluster-type narcissus, the trumpet narcissus common called jonquils or daffodils and the Narcissus Poeticus which blooms about two weeks later than the other two.
Many varieties and colors my be included even in a small border. Mixed collections of the tiny bulbs and of the larger narcissus are entirely safe. Hyacinths will not clash either, but tulips, because of their vivid contrasting colors, are best planted in named groups.
Good bulbs this year are offered at most attractive prices. For less than twenty-five dollars a boarder six by twenty feet, for example, can be solidly planted with a large variety of spring bulbs. Follow theses with a few packets of summer and fall-flowering annuals and you will have a complete garden.
How to Plant a Bulb Border
Along the edge of this border plant a single row of fifty mammoth yellow cross. Behind these in an eighteenth-inch drift, plant a mixture of fifty glory-of-the-snow, fifty snowdrops, and fifty Siberina squalls. Sow seed of the annual sweet alyssum month these in the fall or in very early spring.
Behind these tony bulbs, plant a second eighteen-inch band of three spaced groups of five dozen mixed single narcissi, including Star and Trumpet varieties. Between these three groups, in the same band, plant three dozen heavenly blue trap hyacinths hacked by three dozen pink wood hyacinths. Sow this autumn seeds of the annual pink Shirley poppies between these bulbs.
Of course, there must be lilies, too, but none growing so tall that they exceed three to four feet or their height will be out of proportion to the width of this bed. Set a dozen lilies in four groups among the tulips, each group con tainting one each of the three varieties – the Candidum set within two inches of the surface, the Regale five inches deep, and the Auratum twelve.
When you picture your perfect summer afternoon, what do you see? For me, it is relaxing in the shade of a lovely park with perhaps a nearby pond with tiny fish darting about, robins bopping along looking for a snack, and of course the delicate aroma of flowers wafting in the warm smelling breeze. Can a summer breeze smell warm? Of course it can!
The warmth of summer brings with it a jolt of life which, if you look carefully, touches every living thing around us. The crickets sing louder, the birds chirp livelier, and the children run faster and play harder (of course, the end of the school year could have something to do with that.) Our bones respond to this new change, and crave the outside as we collectively meander into our gardens, both large and small, to pull out the old, and plant the new.
While I may not be a great gardener, I do love the feeling of dirt under my fingernails, and the earthy scent of soil, fertilizer, and roots. For one living thing to help another living thing grow and prosper is a unique gift that should be treasured and cultivated. The sign of a well-loved garden, in my opinion, is one where the plants are allowed to grow as they please with only mild intervention as time and nature pass by together and where even the bees and butterflies view the plants as old friends.
I remember this one painting my mom had hanging up in our house for years of a mother and daughter wandering together through what had to be the most beautiful flower garden I had ever seen. Perhaps you have seen such a garden? One where all colors are present and lush, and where tall hollyhocks and iris watch over their flock of the smaller bachelor buttons and pansies. Oh, to have such a garden myself…. 🙂
The beauty of an old fashioned flower garden is timeless. It speaks of love, care, and a sense that time does nothing but add to the beauty of the flowers and their caretakers.
The size of the garden isn’t important, nor the amount of money one spends. It’s the thought and care one takes into creating a beautiful spot for humans and animals alike. Remember even the ladybugs have outdoor picnics…and I bet they have them right underneath the golden heliotrope!
Wish to start an old fashioned garden of your own? Here are a few links to get you started!
Old-Fashioned Inspired Garden Sources
To learn about various types of “old-fashioned” flowers, Frances from Fairegarden gives a wonderful overview.
Looking for that classic “old-fashioned” flower collection? Try this seed kit by CheapSeeds or these unique Heirloom Stock seeds from Natures Potions Ltd.