Friday, August 27, 2010

Planning for next year

Since the growing season is slowing down and I'm putting the garden away bit by bit, now it's time to plan for next year! Yes, gardening is a never-ending journey but for those of us who love it that's the way we like it.

First Project: Spring bulbs

I always forget to plant bulbs in the fall for the following Spring. By the time Fall gets here I'm usually too tired to even think about planting anything. This year I've done a much better job at spreading out the work - and it's been my most successful gardening year yet, both in terms of vegetable production and aesthetics.

Tulip Field

So, in the next few weeks, I plan to go the local gardening center and purchase some daffodil and tulip bulbs. I'm tired of only have a few tulips every year (although that number does keep going up with our miracle 'family tulips') and even though we had a couple of daffodils bloom this year, that was a freak occurrence. And really, two daffodils? How is that anywhere near enough, amiright?

Golden Daffodils

Second Project: More Bird Baths

Since my sole bird bath was such a big hit this year, I would like to have a couple more spread around my other beds. I also like to add my own creative touches - and keep down costs - so I plan to build my own bird baths.

It looks pretty simple. All you need are some terra cotta pots of various sizes, some liquid nails, some paint and some sealant and voila, you can create some beautiful baths. These are just a couple of examples I found online.

You can make them as tall or short as you like and you can make them any color you wish. If you're not artistically inclined, you can always apply decals instead of painting - or just paint a them a pleasing, single color.

Third Project: Add Interest to the Flower Beds

One problem I always have with my flower beds is the lack of interest. The flowers I choose may be pretty, but they're pretty much all on ground level and that's all there is - flowers. My favorite gardens have garden art and, even more importantly, varied heights.

One simple way I plan to combat this flower bed boredom is to purchase a couple of low hooks to hang some baskets from. Another way to fix this issue is to build some planters - once again from the ol' reliable - terra cotta.

This example isn't finished, but it gave me the basic idea of what can be done with inexpensive terra cotta pots and bowls. A pot saucer can be added to the top to create a combination planter and bird bath.

The only problem I think I'll have with all that terra cotta is winter storage - it's not going to be fun lugging that stuff around at the end of the season. But I think it'll be worth it.

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