Changing of the Guard

The changing of the guard.

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Down here in the south, we have more than one flower season, which means we rotate our flowers from winter annuals to summer annuals.

Worn-out flowers that are just past the stage of perfection are now being replaced with summer flowers of a tougher nature. These are flowers and plants that will tolerate intense southern sun during the daytime hours. These flowers must be heartier and very tough varieties because we have such extremes down here: we can have intense thunderstorms every afternoon at 3 o’clock or we can go for a week with no rain and high 90s. So these plants have to be durable and yet still beautiful so we can enjoy them.

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But as we’re getting ready to put in the new summer annuals, does anybody really look at their old winter annuals does anybody say thank you for the months of beauty and enjoyment they gave us? Probably not. Most of us just get in there and remove the old plants, turn over the soil, add a little bit of fertilizer and get ready to plant the next batch.

Yet, those flowers we’re ripping out to throw in the garbage did give us many hours of beautiful calming enjoyment. It almost feels like we should be paying a homage to those spent flowers, just being trashed. We make no attempts to save them, really it’s not economical, but I think we should at least take pictures of that we can look back and say “wow that was really something”.

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So as you change the guard with your flowers going from one season to the next take a moment and be thankful for the beauty and enjoyment that you had with last season’s batch of annuals.

Mixing It Up!

Mix it up

Do you walk outside and wonder what happened? Do you look out your windows, pull in your driveway or turn the corner and wonder “when did my landscaping get so old?” And then you moan: I can’t afford to re-landscape my whole yard.

BUT, you can afford to mix it up!

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Instead of being frustrated by thinking you have to totally redo your landscape, find an area that looks a little overgrown, and concentrate there. By adding a simple pot full of color, in amongst the bushes, you can give a whole garden a new look. Or take that one section and tear it out. Now you can make it a special spot by putting a rose garden, a herb garden, a cut flower garden or butterfly garden, depending upon what you like.

But don’t stop there. Rearrange your garden furniture. Put your favorite lounge chair in another corner, and you’re getting yourself a whole new view and a whole new attitude. Add a free-standing garden umbrella and you’ve given some shade in an area that you normally wouldn’t use. Suddenly you have a whole new seating area. But don’t stop there. Add a few pots of flowers in a cluster around your new seating area, you’ve given it a  new look and feel.

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Bringing some sound with the addition of wind chimes, add some movement with a flag flapping in the breeze, bring the wildlife in with the addition of the bird bath or bird feeder.  These can all give new life to an old garden.

And don’t forget the evening hours you’ll want to spend in your garden. Adding low voltage lighting, up-light a tree trunk for interest or even add a fire pit can make your garden something you can enjoy night and day.

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But regardless of what you do don’t give up on your garden…
Mix it up, Re-invented and get out there and enjoy that outdoor living!