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Thursday, June 19, 2014

Land Scape Ho!

Welcome back, blogmates and neighbors to our Summer Solstice program for 2014!  It is so good to be here, and, see all of your beaming faces eager for knowledge!  I hope I'm not too late for Bermuda shorts, Coca Cola, and watermelon!  And, oh yes, are you ready for the 4th of July picnics and celebrations?  My brother was born on July 4th, and, that made for the most fun celebrations ever!  Hot dogs, cake and ice cream, and fireworks, were the catch of the day!


I wanted to come by and spend a little time sharing some information I recently acquired.  On the Yahoo Shine site, from HGTV Family of Sites, comes a list of 7 Landscaping Don'ts.  So, in getting right to it, here's what we can do to avoid the time, money and maintenance generated by landscaping booboos!

'Must-Not-Dos of Home Landscaping!'  

1.  Landscape Overkill-don't let landscaping overwhelm your house.  You don't want to spend your time pruning trees and shrubs that 'over-grow' to a size, forcing you to fight your way out the front door!

2.  Don't start landscaping without a can draw your own plans out, but do your homework, and plant varieties that are indigenous to your neck of the woods. It's okay to try new and exotic plantings, I've sure been guilty of that, and, sometimes you will be pleasantly surprised.  Just be sure you can access the planted area easily with water and yard maintenance equipment, allowing you to keep your garden healthy and beautiful.  Isn't it great, however, that you can go online to find garden plans from various gardening sites, and garden magazines!  There is some great advice out there!

3.  Don't plant too much of the same thing.  Try to provide a bit of variety of planting, so as to keep blooms coming throughout the seasons.  The photo below illustrates just that!  Beautiful shrub roses, aren't they?  But, tell me what happens once the blooms are gone...what is left in this area to look at?  Additionally, the space must be trimmed and cleaned after blooming season is over.  Not for me!

4.  Don't let a big lawn suck your resources.  A large area of lush grass is nice, but, it can be a glutton for your time, requiring large amounts of water and nutrients. Try to reduce the size of a large lawn with some landscape beds that are attractive and low maintenance.  May I suggest some perennial beds that re-appear over the years, and possibly some low-maintenance shrubs?

5.  Don't let ivy climb your house unless you are ready to do annual pruning.  I agree-ivy vines are lovely, but once they are established, they can cover your windows, clog your gutters, and encourage pests like termites!  OH GAG!  Who'd of thought?  Thanks, but I'll keep my ivy in a controlled pot!

6.  Don't plant trees too close to your house, meaning species that may overtake the yard or your home's proportions.  An invite for headaches and nightmares, I promise!

7.  Don't install one-dimensional planting beds.  Try to plant in layers, featuring low-growing plants such as begonias or impatiens in front of the taller plants to conceal the legginess.  You can co-ordinate your colors to offer appeal, such as red or blue salvia with silvery Lamb's ear or white impatiens bordering the front.
The raised bed below would have been served better with fewer of the tall flowers, say in a rounded formation in the center.  Then, you could probably get away with planting one color of coleus around them, or a colored plant of the same substance as coleus.  Since this is a raised bed, a very low bordering plant such as begonias, would not show up over the edge of the box.  You could border this with liriope, also known as monkey grass.  

And, there we have it, gracious gardeners!  Not a tall order after all, you think?  
A few things to remember:
 When planning for a bed containing various plants or flowers, find the types that compliment each other in size, color...and, do they get along and grow well together?
Sun vs. shade-Zinnias, Periwinkles, Moss Rose, and Marigolds just LOVE the sun, and lots of it!
Hosta, ferns, impatiens, violas, and purple jew can do 4 or 5 hours of sun, and then they need some filtered light shade.

Okay, okay...I'll stop!  But, do your homework, ask questions, and look it up!

Thank You:
Yahoo images

***  Thank you, and, thank you so much for coming by.  I enjoy your visits, and I hope you do too. Did this presentation help answer any questions you may have?  I appreciate you and your comments!  And, as usual,  I did put in at least 2 cents, and added my own suggestions to the article, in hopes of clarifying any confusing terminology.

Our little 'Scooter' * June 8, 2014 * Fort Worth, TX
~photo by Suzanne

"Aaah, summer...that long anticipated stretch of lazy, lingering days,
 free of responsibility, and rife with possibility.
 It's a time to hunt for insects, master handstands, practice swimming strokes,
 conquer trees, explore nooks and crannies, and make new friends."
~Darell Hammond

*note:  all photos except the last one of our Scooter were acquired from Yahoo images.  

Be safe...give love...AND laugh a lot!
See you next time!  ♥


  1. Good advice here, Miss Suzanne. It takes years sometimes to get the plants in the right places regarding sun and shade requirements, and then some tree will grow up and out and mess with all those perfect plantings. Grr

    1. Hi Nancy. Yes, I've made plenty of mistakes in planting things that just wouldn't work here. Who'd have thought daffodils need sun? Haha! Thank you so much for coming by. Your plantings are very nice this year. Have a great weekend ! ♥

  2. Howdy, Suzanne! I brought my beaming face to your place eager for knowledge and, by gum, I got plenty of it! This is all good advice. 17 years ago when we moved into our new house here, Mrs. Shady and I hired an "expert" to help us with our landscaping layout. Nevertheless, some mistakes were made, especially in the years since then when Mrs. Shady essentially planted "one of everything" and turned the property into a hodgepodge. We also made some mistakes by crowding trees and shrubs and planting some too close to the house. Another problem we have is too much lawn which, as you pointed out, is expensive to maintain and can turn into a headache. We've had to replace our St. Augustine sod twice since we've lived here.

    Holy smoke! That house overgrown with ivy is an unbelievable sight, isn't it? The other day I stripped a few vines off one of my walls and even that little bit was an unpleasant chore.

    My goodness, Scootie is getting big, isn't he? Thanks for sharing an updated photo of him.

    Hey, sweetie. I have TWO... count 'em... TWO blog awards waiting for you (and your evil twin) in my next blog post tomorrow morning. I invite you to come by and pick them up. If you don't feel like answering the list of questions, making up a list of your own and passing the award on to others, then I won't be offended. Just consider it a gesture of friendship because I admire you and love your blogs. Okay?

    Good night and God bless!

    1. Hi Shady, just couldn't stay up later last night to see this. So, you were impressed with the Ivy Cottage! What a nightmare. Yes, the grass lawn thing can also be a pain. One year I was visited by grubs-didn't know what that was at the time. And, they went through my St Augustine like it was was nothing, and, left me with nothing. My neighbor told me what it was, fortunately, it didn't overtake the whole back yard before I was able to treat it. Scootie is getting tall, and he was a bit shy about having his photo taken...but he did enjoy his visit. I'll get more photos next time!

      So what's with the awards? You know how shy I am, Shady! Maybe I can answer a few questions. I will come by this evening to see what you're up to. Thank you so much for your visit, and, comments. And, I know my cohort over at KardKorner will thank you immensely-she is working on a fun story, but, it takes time to do research sometimes! So, have a great's Friday-YAY! ♫

  3. Oh if only I had read your post years ago!! Stuffed with sound advice. Plants requiring annual pruning and suchlike maintenance are ok when the gardener is young and agile, but, dear me, when those bones start to ache - uh no.... I made so many mistakes at times.
    However, I shall have no regrets because I also received such pleasure from each garden. We do, don't we.
    It's not only technical knowledge that makes a site such as your interesting, it's the personal experiences and all those extra little touches and whimsies within a garden that makes things so interesting.
    Thoroughly enjoyed my read here today.
    Your dear Scootie is growing up isn't he. Precious times :D)
    Cheers now and all the best.

    1. We just had to learn by trial and error, didn't we Susan? And, now, I can't do such heavy gardening like I used to. I loved digging and building my own gardens...well, I can still plan and do a little work. And, I have received great pleasure from them as you-boy am I glad to have photos!

      Thank you so much for your comments. It means a lot to me that you come by for visits, and enjoy what you read. I love to add a bit of humor whenever I can. And, our little Scootie is growing. We grab any opportunity we can to spend time with him. I think he'll be off to school in the fall and visits will be shorter. Take care Susan, and have a great weekend! ♥

  4. Your blog was good, too many people plant all that stuff so close

    to the house, and then it eventually grows and over runs the


    Talk to you later.



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