I may be setting a summer pattern… getting a post published every other week is about all I seem to be able to have time for… but that’s probably all you have time to read as well! Summer is such a few short months, to waste it indoor is just that… a waste!
In this post I’m going to share with you 2 pergolas and a garden update… one of the pergolas is at our house, but the other pergola is from someone else’s house…
A couple weeks ago my husband and I went to see two of our grandkids play baseball and went over to their dad’s and step-mom’s house after. Yep, like over 50% of the people in America, our family, too, has been touched by divorce. Their dad, our former son-in-law, is a very talented carpenter and in his spare time, he and his crew built a few fantastic additions to their backyard.
This cedar pergola over their dining area is one of those beautiful additions:
His wife is an artist and designer, so I think she came up with the design and he finished the concept as he progressed with the actual construction.
The joinery is obviously constructed by a craftsman.
The ladder to reach the top for maintenance doubles as a plant shelf:
If you’re in the St. Croix Valley area and looking for a great carpenter, I highly recommend his ability, integrity and solid work ethic. Here is is contact info: Bylander Finish Carpentry
Above the table are a collection of birdhouses. While I was sitting at the table, Mama Wren was in a tizzy. She was betwixt getting to her babies in the nest in one of the birdhouses to share the juicy bug in her beak, or fly away because I was too close for comfort.
Speaking of birdhouses, these lovely birdhouses were created by our grandkid’s step-mom.
She made them out of last year’s gourds after drying them over the winter. What a talented artist she is!
That was one of the pergolas…
Back at our place…
Here is an update on all the gardening and landscaping we’ve been working on.
The circular garden is looking great. I pulled weeds a couple of times since planting, getting out the stragglers I missed when I first cleared the old garden. (Here is the original post of the before and after circular garden.)
Then I sprinkled Preen, to stop any more weed seeds from germinating.
The Jacob’s Ladder around the birdbath is done flowering now, but even the foliage is pretty as it gets established.
The creeping thyme around the pair of arched concrete benches is, well, creeping…
with hopes of ever so slowly connecting to its neighbor and completely covering the soil with a blanket of Thyme.
I was thrilled with the bold show of Giant Globe Alliums in the terraced garden.
Speaking of creeping, I planted 2 clematis…
One in the circular garden and one in this terraced garden… you can see it inside the iron arbor below:
When planting clematis, the saying rings true:
“The first year they sleep, the second year they creep, and the third year they leap.”
We’re in the ‘sleeping’ year, so I’m just happy to see green on them. 🙂
Way back when we first bought this house, (we’re coming up on 2 years now) we had to cut down several trees. One of the trees was a big ole maple that sat too close to the house, but it’s large trunk was maybe in a good place for a ‘stump carving’. (Here is the post talking about why we had to cut down so many trees, that also shows that stump)
Did we? Did we carve the stump?
To answer that question with a picture…
Here is where that stump was:
The stump has been cut down, and the remaining part too low to cut, has been ground down with a stump grinder a few inches below the surface. Fresh soil has filled the hole and baby grass is now sprouting on it.
The thing is, once we installed the concrete connecting the existing front sidewalk to the existing driveway, (weird that had never been finished before) I wanted to have a big pergola welcoming people to come to the front door through that way.
It would be a great way to repeat the rough sawn beams that we built the front porch with as well. (here you can read the post on the front porch
All that being said, once the pergola was up, I realized that the stump was going to just compete with the pergola. Then considering the cost of carving the stump, (thousands!!) plus the risk of being stuck with something I might not even care for, I decided it wasn’t meant to be. I did leave the stump for over a year while we finished pretty much everything else, as I contemplated, but in the end the stump came down and grass went in.
Now we have the Betty Matthews Wisteria that will grow up the pergola. (in this post I tell you why this particular wisteria is so precious to me)
I was excited to see its very first bloom too!
Now to the backyard garden update…
The container gardening has really been a fantastic investment! (here is the post showing all the details about these containers, with a shopping link for them too) I really wasn’t sure how well they’d work over the summer, but both my husband and I are really impressed with how fantastic they are.
These pictures were taken a week or so ago, and everything has grown so much more since then. The vegetables are super healthy, the self-watering system in the containers is helping me keep them moist. I gotta say too, having it up at a level I don’t have to bend over to tend to is so nice as well.
The tomatoes are all looking fantastic.
There were some vine veggies I didn’t feel I had room for, so I put them in half whiskey barrels, (zucchini and cucumbers). They too are looking great, but I do have to water them more frequently as there is no ‘self-watering’ feature in the barrels.
Our youngest grandson was super happy to be able to help with that chore! He was so precious as he took careful consideration to get the water into the soil below the large leaves.
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Want to read more? Here are all the posts I’ve written about gardening.