Friday, October 28, 2011

Two Mothers

An amazing night.  Organic good for you food at Two Mothers restaurant.  They get all of their food from local farmers and create little waste. Why aren't more restaurants like this?  It feels good to dine out with your family and know that you are all eating clean food!!  Two amazing moms working to recreate the school lunch programs in our area. 

On the menu for tonight....portobello lasagna, sun dried tomato bruschetta, garlic hummus and red peppers, lentil soup, to die for gluten free/vegan black bean chocolate cake and last but not least my little brother rocking the place out on the guitar!

Thursday, October 20, 2011


I enjoy finding those places that transport you to another time.  One that is high on my list for local must sees is the Danada Forest Preserve.  Danada is the former estate of Daniel Rice and his wife, Ada, racehorse enthusiasts who bred champion Thoroughbreds. With amazing conservation and educational programs, plus the overall history of Danada, it is hard not to fall in love with its rich character.       

The Danada House...where my husband and I got married...sweet memories! 
Some of the fall beds in the formal garden.

I know a mum is a mum, but you can't beat their scrumptious colors in the fall!

The back of the Danada House.

Such a peaceful place....

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Like I said before, when we moved here there was a bed in the back lined with rocks.  Through the years I have found some uses for them....give them to gardening friends, use them for a sloped rock garden, and pile the rest in the side bed waiting for inspiration to hit me in the head.   So I write this with great satisfaction that I have finally figured out what to do with them!

While finishing the dishes and staring out the window at our Douglas Fir (a corner that never sat right with me)  I finally saw it.  A line or a trail if you will in the soil between the Douglas Fir and the Viburnum.  Ah yes! A dry stream bed and a purpose for all my rocks!   

The digging begins!  In the spring I hope to purchase a load of stones for the bottom of the dry stream bed.  I will also be adding and transferring plants here from my rock garden come spring.

I have small to medium rocks so I plan on grouping them together to try and get the look of big rocks along both sides of the stream.

Good excuse to head to the fall plant sale at our local Arboretum!

My daughter wanted to push our plants all by herself. 
She knows her stuff! 
Japanese Forest Grass, Beautyberry, and Amsonia

I can finally start adding plants now that I know what I am doing!
Japanese Forest Grass

My sweet Beautyberry!  A  little sprig from a larger plant...can't wait for it to grow!

I have much to do!

Some lovely examples
via Google

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

perennial combinations on my mind

There are many perennials that I will have to move next year due to reworking our space for a patio.  Our side yard that is south facing is another story.  We have much to do there and thinking about it makes my head spin.  I am thankful that we do get a bit of sun there which allows me to grow some sun loving perennials.  Here are some of my ramblings for combinations...
This garden is massive but has so many fantastic components.  I thoroughly enjoy the colors and forms of this space.  Eupatorium which is the tall pink plant in the background.  Russian Sage in the front border.  The annual Verbena Bonariensis and Sedum. (via yahoo-Kilmalu Gardens)

Pink Bee Balm.  I will be moving this to the side yard from my rock garden. It will get better sun exposure and will be a nice backdrop for the garden.  Purple Lavender and Yellow Yarrow.  I like the color combination of these three. 
(via BHG)

I have said it before...I need to work on my plant spacing among many other things.  The Geraniums that I currently have are being overcrowded. They are number one on the list for relocation next year.  Here is an example of Geranium, Veronica (have not always had the best luck with but love)  and Penstemon. 
(via-gottagarden from Village Garden Web)

Friday, September 9, 2011

the barn out back

My dear friend came to visit after we moved in to our home. She is a true city girl with an enormous amount of whit. When we went outside to sit and chat the first thing out of her mouth was, "Wow Nic, you have a barn."  With a chuckle I agreed.  Now if it was a real barn that would be one thing but it is our shed that is meant to look like a barn.  There are many animals living beneath it due to it not being built on a slab.  A scary place really, if you are brave enough to go inside. 

Here is our shed..I planted an Amur Maple so the "barn" is tucked away.  I also try to soften the edges with potted annuals.

Below is inspiration of potting sheds that I have collected in hopes that one day I will have a space to work as I continue learning as a gardener. 

pictures via-Pinterest and BHG

This is very similar to my neighbors potting shed/greenhouse.  It is south facing and is part potting shed with windows for a bit of greenhouse.  Brilliant for the area I live in and my personal favorite.

This book by Debra Prinzing has some fun ideas about creating a space built around your needs
picture via-Amazon