Garden Tips

Fireplaces and Things That Bug Me

Burning memories

Consider extending the season in your garden by building a fireplace or fire pit.


Last winter we were invited to dinner. Our friends had an outdoor fireplace, crowning a high point off the patio, overlooking their gardens. It was a reasonably mild night, no snow. After dinner, our host stoked a roaring fire, we took our blankets out and sipped wine and shared stories for hours around the warmth of the flames. It was delightful. It reminds me of this snippet from a book I featured on “Fussy Finds” a while back. Janice Wells from the “Gin & Tonic Gardener”, Chapter 26 / Before You Hibernate… (She’s talking about garden magazines and more specifically an article on fire pits in gardens.)




Spring Tips

For you “fussy gardeners” out there, there’s nothing better than a good straight spade to edge all of your garden beds. This defines your garden area shapes from the lawn and dramatizes the visual distinctions within your property. I like to bevel cut the edges of the grass around the beds to further enhance a crisp aesthetic.


Recycle Unwanted Organic Material

Leaves and small branches are a wonderful compost material, so if you have lots of big trees on your property, consider using as much of them as you can to add to your compost pile. I’m still training myself to bag organic kitchen waste to add to the mix: things like egg shells, fruit, old lettuce and other vegetables can all be part of your compost cocktail. Stir in some soil periodically, moisten with water and you’re underway creating your own humus. Nothing better for those garden beds, plus you save on buying the bagged stuff.


How’s the Grass?

When summer comes with all of its heat, it’s important to raise your mower and cut the grass higher up from the ground than you usually do. This with regular watering and over seeding helps to keep your lawn healthy through the stretch of heat fatigue.




Slush Fund for Spring Cleanup

One tip that crossed my mind the other day as the courier truck slid off the road while making a delivery to us, landing in our beautifully landscaped culvert, was to put money aside to repair winter damage. This event and the snow plow taking up my guard stones and lovely new sod more than once, will require some concerted effort in the spring.


Summer Backdrop

Keeping plants alive, beds weed free and grass green are my three prime objectives every summer. Especially when things tend to fatigue mid July. This is just core to good gardening.