April 08, 2019

Austin's Awesome Container Plantings

A Container 1
Stock tank plant display area at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

At the Austin Garden Bloggers Fling last May, I learned that the soil in the Austin area varies widely, depending on the location of the garden. I also learned that Austin gardeners are incredibly creative with their container plantings--often dealing with soil challenges, but sometimes simply because they're talented folks.

Stock tanks, like those used at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to showcase native plant species, are a common vessel for plants in Austin.

A Container 2

Terra cotta pots set on gravel and surrounded by beautiful rocks are a great way to showcase a little corner of Jennifer Stocker's (Rock Rose) impressive plant collection--in this case, a sampling of succulents.

A Container 3

Metal planting beds edged along a stepped walkway with matching caging seem elegant, and blend well with the natural surroundings at this private garden.

A Container 4

Designer Colleen Jamison's whimsy with pots and plantings includes this delightful stacked display leading up to the door.

A Container 5

A colorful ceramic pot filled with blue marbles suggests water and floating succulents.

A Container 6

Creative window boxes always catch my eye, and the colors in this one are dramatic, but complementary to the structure's paint colors.

A Container 7

Pam Penick's (Digging) stock tank pond is really something special--it fits the surroundings, and the brick pavers framing it.

A Container 8

A totally different style and use of potted plants awaits at the garden of designer B. Jane.

A Container 9

A Container 10

The collections are expertly arranged around the foundations of the buildings and the pool.

A Container 11

Traditional designs are wonderful, too, like this one at a private garden. I love the look of this old-fashioned well-surround, planted with Daylilies, Daisies, and other plants, along with the Celtic cross.

A Container 12

Author/designer Lucinda Hutson certainly works magic with her colorful planters. I love the bright colors of this pair.

A Container 13

This little courtyard on her amazing property is filled with potted fun.

A Container 14

Her unique use of pastel beauty really makes a statement.

A Container 15

Another private garden makes a nice use of echoing potted succulents on the table with a complementary arrangement on the patio. The warm earth-tone colors of the pots set off the beautiful limestone brick.

A Container 16

Succulents spilling over the edge of a metal pot, framed by Salvias in the courtyard--very nice.

A Container 17

Talk about creative--I love everything about this grouping--from the face sculpture to the metal door/trellis to the bright blue pot.

A Container 18

Sometimes pots are so vibrant, the best plants for them are angular and green, like this Pencil Cactus Euphorbia.

A Container 19

Designer Diana Kirby has some unique planters, too, like this vertical planter with succulents, reminding us of the important things in life.

A Container 20

This vibrant blue pot with a tasteful collection of plants spilling out all sides is simply lovely.

The Garden Bloggers Fling is always inspirational and fun. This year we're meeting in Denver, Colorado, June 13-16. To learn more about The Fling visit this link: https://bit.ly/2I7l5ao.

February 28, 2019

Results of the #Shortdays Challenge

shortdays challenge

At the beginning of November, I started a #shortdayschallenge on Instagram. The purpose: to increase my appreciation of the blessings of each day--even through the coldest, shortest days. I wanted to avoid my common habit of wishing the winter away, which can mean missing out on little pleasures and living in a sour state of mind for weeks on end.

Did it work? For the most part, I would say yes, posting about a special thing each day helped me better appreciate the season. Admittedly, this particular winter with its deep polar vortex and erratic temperature and weather changes has been tough. But the #shortdayschallenge did help.

Now that the challenge is completed, I'm cutting back on social media for a
bit--not an official break, but a slowdown. I have some good reasons.


One reason is this little fellow--our new little cockapoo puppy, Nicholas. He's really smart and he's catching on quickly to all things puppies need to learn. I'm trying to savor the time with him as a puppy. It will pass too fast.


Also, I need to get going with some seed-starting! Spring will be here before we know it, and I hope to have some healthy starts to plants for the potager garden. Other family events are keeping me busy, too. So, I apologize for not being as attentive with visits and comments on your posts for a few weeks. Time to prepare for the growing season ahead!