I have to say that over the years as a gardener, I’ve quickly discovered that you get what you pay for when it comes to gardening tools. Of course, there are cheap versions that last a season for those who dabble in gardening, but for those really dedicated to the art of gardening and yard work, the quality of your tools is vital to getting the job done with the least amount of effort and cost. I have found that some of the very best tools come from Europe. From the craftsmanship, quality and durability, they can’t be beat. As many of you know, I have been working super hard in the gardens this year at the new home. There was plenty of work to be done and luckily I had great tools to work with. Today, I wanted to share a few that you just might want to add to your aresnal.
This past week, I headed to Belton, Texas to present at the Mother Earth News Fair. This time my daughter came along with me. Last year, when I visited the Magnolia Market Silos I really wanted to bring her back with me, as she is a huge fan of Fixer Upper on HGTV. So, with a copy of my book, A Kid’s Guide to Keeping Chickens, and my daughter in tow, we drove north a little over thirty miles to give a copy of my book to the Gaines Family. Traveling to the Magnolia Market at the Silos is such great fun and the atmosphere can be compared to a decorator’s Disneyland. Today, I’m sharing our adventures and a few tips for you if you’re going to the Silo’s for the first time.
Oh winter, how do I miss my gardens and hanging outside with my flock as they meander around me. Today, instead of feeling glum, I decided to make a miniature chicken garden. Actually, I got a bit carried away and made a few. Once I got started I could not help myself. As I planted up these sweet little gardens, I was envisioning being in my gardens with my own flock. I swear I could here these tiny little chickens carrying on, clucking as to which garden they wanted to explore.
Earlier this year, my family and I traveled to Hawaii. One of the highlights of our trip was a visit to the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Gardens. This Hawaiian tropical garden was a hidden gem, that we discovered on the Big Island of Hawaii. I had no idea what to expect, nor did my family. My family indulged me a bit as we purchased our tickets. From the outside entrance, it seems as though we would only be exploring for a few moments. Three hours later, we had to pull ourselves from the beauty and awe. In the gardens alone, we took over 200 photos. From the landscape, grounds, orchids, unique tropical plantings and the crashing ocean, we were in awe. I am so thrilled to be able to share this experience with you.
I love Christmas time. It’s one of my favorite times of the year for crafting too. Every year I make wreaths. This year, I wanted one of the wreaths to showcase the beauty of a simple and peaceful Christmas. So I featured a little tin church, some decorative sprigs as well as the Star of Bethlehem. I combined some off the shelf letters and a simple grapevine wreath as a jumping off point. The rest just seemed to come together for this lettered wreath with a little bit of inspiration from the Christmas season displays in town.
One of our favorite things to do at home on a rainy day is make creations with bakeable clay. It’s great fun for the family. In fact, it’s fun for folks of all ages. The clay comes in every color imaginable and it is so much fun being able to permanently capture the kids’ creations. As we were sitting around the table, I spied a block of copper colored clay. How fun would it be to transform it into clay garden markers? With small cookie cutters, I got to work and made a bunch for the spring inspired windowsill garden.
A few weeks ago, I was in Texas speaking at the Mother Earth News Fair in Belton, Texas. When I finally looked at the map, I realized that Waco was less than an hour away. I was going to have to make a trip to Chip and Joanna Gaine’s Magnolia Market silos. As a big fan of Fixer Upper, I too was curious to see what the silos were all about. I actually caught the episode where Joanna first shared her silo dreams with Chip, and it was surreal to be so close to their latest endeavor.
I love gardening in miniature and with spring in the air I could not help myself. My daughter and I decided to create a miniature garden that we would both love to spend time in. With a cottage garden as inspiration, the entire miniature garden came together in under an hour’s time. We had so much fun creating this outdoor scene. For the plantings we chose pansies, grape hyacinths, lettuce, lavender, dianthus and english daisies. We even used a small little bit of sedum. I’ll share more on that later.
Scientists have shown that speaking to plants can be a good thing. Plants respond positively to music, engaging them in conversation, and even touch. A few years ago, an article came out that discussed plant intelligence. I was fascinated. But even if you aren’t a plant scientist, there is something to be learned even by the person who, dare I say has a brown thumb. You see to me, plants speak volumes. You just have to know how to “listen”.
Earlier this week, I stumbled upon this lovely robin’s nest. A robin must have felt safe and stealthy made a nest in the top of my garden umbrella. A few days ago, I went to take the umbrella down because of an approaching storm. I suddenly realized that I couldn’t. A nest with a single blue egg was perched under the safety of the umbrella.