Thursday, May 7, 2015

the sadness of a crabapple tree

Every spring we wait for the crabapple tree to put on this glorious show:

Which is always followed immediately by rainstorms and then this:

Until next year, pretty tree. 

Friday, May 1, 2015

The late April garden

I left a mostly gray-brown garden to go to the hospital, and brought my new baby home to things in bloom.  

White "alba" bleedingheart, planted bareroot in fall 2013.  They didn't bloom last year so I am thrilled to see them this year!

Grape hyacinth, planted by some previous owner.  I find the foliage kind of ratty when the blooms are spent, but the little purple flowers are cute while they last. 

Virginia bluebells, also planted by some previous owner.  The foliage and flowers are so pretty, but they die back completely and leave an empty spot in the garden.  I'm still figuring out how to keep things looking good all season with the here-and-gone perennials. 

A small serviceberry bush, a gift from a friend last fall.  Supposedly there will be berries to eat later, but for now the fluffy buds are pretty enough to be the whole show. 

Dwarf iris, came with the house.  I'm torn on these because I love them- but they haven't bloomed well the last three years and are encroached by grass that I don't know how to remove without disturbing the tubers.  

We also have fern tendrils, hosta tips, lilac buds, and various green things leafing out all over the place.  Between garden and baby it's going to be a summer of watching things grow. 

Saturday, April 11, 2015

the April garden

When we moved into our house in July 2012 I was a little overwhelmed by all the garden space, most of it overgrown with prairie plants or empty.  After clearing out a lot of dead/scraggly plants we were left with a lot of bare ground, which I've been slowly filling the last two years.

The April garden is mostly brown, starting to green up in a few places.  Below some Allium foliage and hellebores are peeking through, and on the left the rusty foliage of Coral Bells is starting to brighten a little.

This is my favorite garden, the one that's gotten the most attention but suffers from a lot of small perennials still needing time to fill in.  There are still a few empty spaces as well.

Another view of the same garden.  Daffodils and Asian Ginger are doing their best, and the other perennials are just starting to come in.  Salvia, lemon balm, sage, pincushion flower, and various sedums are just getting started.  The hydrangeas have tiny green buds and the roses are starting to set laterals.  Against the two sides of the garden gate fence are two climbing roses (New Dawn).  I bought them as bands in summer 2012, and it's taken them some time to establish.  I had blooms last year, but I expect a big growth spurt this year - and to spend some serious time training and pruning from now on.

Bleedingheart Alba, planted bareroot in fall 2013.

Hellebores, recovering from a drastic cutback of their browned winter foliage.

Peonies, planted bareroot in fall 2013 and finally showing a few good sprouts.  I'm really hoping for blooms this year, although last fall I moved a few around and that may mean no flowers until next year.  When I moved them I dug up huge chunks of soil around them, trying to keep the tuber/root system as undisturbed as possible.  But plants are tricky, so the tradeoff is there.

Daffodils!  I don't love them, honestly, but they're one of the early risers so I keep them.  I wish the foliage didn't get so scraggly after they bloom.  Also pictured: a Nepeta catmint in the upper left, and a white azalea on the right, planted in spring 2013.  Last year we had a late spring and the azalea never did bloom.

This is one of my David Austin roses (Alynwick), planted bareroot in June 2014.  It came with a fairly sizeable root system and managed to bloom twice last summer.  This year it, along with its friends, are bigger and hopefully will put on more of a show.  The other Austins I have so far are: Winchester Cathedral, Asma Sharifa, and James Galway.  All own-root for my Zone 5 garden.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Shopgirl Updates

Soon I’ll need to put the shop on vacation and take a non-optional few weeks of maternity leave.  I plan to return May 9, but while I’m on “vacation” the listings will be invisible.  I always think that’s frustrating when I really want to know what should have been there (and will be again.)  So here are the usual things in pictures, with details at the bottom of this post.  The actual listings are (or will soon be again) available to buy from Fairlywell Handmade.

Driftwood Gray with Silver/Nickel Hardware

Driftwood Gray with Gold/Brass hardware

Natural Wood with Gold/Brass Hardware

Walnut Brown with Gold/Brass Hardware

Walnut Brown with Silver/Nickel Hardware

  • Necklace displays are wood with 23 brass hooks. 12″ long by 2″ tall (including hooks).
  • Earring displays are wood with a brass bar resting on two brass hooks. 12″ long by 2″ tall (including hooks.)
  • Command Velcro strips for hanging on the wall are included, two sets per piece.
  • The listings with silver earring bars carry a higher price than the similar listings for racks with brass hardware – the earring bars are more expensive in silver (real silver) than in brass.  They are pretty, though!

The wood color and hardware combinations are available a few different ways, listed below:
  • Single necklace racks (gray, natural, or walnut brown) with 23 hooks (gold/brass or silver/nickel) are $22.
  • Single earring racks (gray, natural, or walnut brown) with two hooks supporting a solid brass rod are $22.
  • Single earring racks (gray, natural, or walnut brown) with two hooks supporting a solid silver rod are $26.  (The additional charge is for the solid silver earring bar.)
  • Sets of three (gray, natural, or walnut brown) with brass hardware are $59 – for any combination of three racks.
  • Sets of three (gray, natural, or walnut brown) with silver hardware are $59 – for three necklace racks.
  • Sets of three (gray, natural, or walnut brown) with silver hardware are $63 – for two necklace racks and one earring rack, as pictured above.  (The additional charge is for the solid silver earring bar.)