A Small Perennial Garden in an Ugly Spot in the Backyard


Sunday, May 25, 2014

Three years ago, ahem, I wrote a post about the five ugliest spots in our backyard. Since I don't even want to go to the place where I describe our quickly-spiraling-downward-backyard let's focus on one little area that has seen a bit of progress.
This is the picture of Ugly Spot #5 that I shared back in May of 2011. It's the little spot between the fence and our lower deck. It was barely growing any grass and just looked awful. I decided to take action. Either last summer or the summer before (where does the time go!?!?!) I went ahead and dug out the grass, added some rich garden soil, and planted some perennials.

I chose two climbing perennials to draw attention away from the ugly, old window as well as the hydro meter and cable lines. One is a climbing hydrangea that was a tonne of money (and that I almost killed but miraculously brought back to life) and the other is a white clematis.

I chose a peony for the middle of the garden because they get quite full and leafy to disguise the window. Oh, and they're kinda pretty.

The rest of the perennials I chose were kind of random. I think I planted some coneflowers, asters, and phlox. I suppose it will be a surprise if / when they flower this season. 

The space still looks pretty ugly. But, it's definitely better than it was before.

The climbing vines are growing up wooden stakes at the moment so I picked up two adorable trellis' on my last trip to the grocery store when I was supposed to actually be in the grocery store and not in the garden centre. Wink, wink.

I think I might have to tweak the spacing of everything once the perennials are a bit more established. But, I think I'll worry about that later.

For now, my helper and I are just trying to keep the plants alive.

Eventually I'll try to find some pretty garden edging. I don't want anything too formal so I pinned this picture of a flagstone edge that I really like. I try not to look at too many pictures of nice gardens and yards though. It gets a bit discouraging when you're trying so hard but your lawn is still invaded by dandelions, moss, and chinch bugs (true story).

Dear picture: please stop rubbing it in that you have a nicer garden than me. It's not nice.

In other news:
- I've got a few posts in the works about how our deck is coming along. I've made it my life's mission to give it a little makeover this summer. 
- Alex is tiling the basement fireplace as we speak! If you were one of my dear blog friends who inquired about the tile name and manufacturer after my last post - stay tuned. Alex stashed the invoice for the tiles and we still haven't come across it. Wow, we're so organized. ;) 
- Our whole little family got slammed with the stomach flu and then a super bad cold. These past few weeks have been tres sucky. But, it's been sunny for three days in a row (THREE!!!) and I think we're finally all on the mend. Yippee!

Following Up on a Few Things. And Thank You.


Friday, May 2, 2014

First of all, from the bottom of my achy breaky heart, I want to thank all of you for all of the supportive, encouraging, and down-right flattering things that you had to say after I shared this post.
I received over 100 replies via blogger, Facebook, and personal email. Many of them from readers who had never ever left a comment before. I was amazed, and incredibly grateful.
There are people out there who read this and actually like it?!?!? (Awkward happy dance.)(Probably The Carlton.)
I wish I could have responded to every single comment. Instead, I will respond by: 
1) Saying THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2) Informing you that we are now besties.
3) Inviting you for a walk to the corner store to get chocolate popsicles.
4) Sharing an adorable photo of a cute kid in our ugly, imperfect kitchen.
 So how about I follow up on a few things, m'kay?
Master Bedroom Mirror
I shared in a previous post that after visiting Crate and Barrel I was having non-buyer's remorse about not purchasing their Frisco mirror.
Frisco Mirror - Bottom Right
Source: Crate and Barrel
I thought it would add a little bit of softness to all of the hard lines we have going on in our master bedroom at the moment.
I also thought it would compliment the large, wooden mirror I picked up from Homesense a month or so ago.
After getting paid for a few little freelance articles (woah does that sound weird or what) I had some extra spending money burning a hole in my pocket. And then the mirror went on sale. And then the mirror arrived on my doorstep.

{Alex asked me why we needed two mirrors. I told him that one of them was to actually use and the other one was to look pretty. I'm almost positive he rolled his eyes at me.}
The colour isn't as dark as I remembered it in the store but it's still really pretty and provides some nice contrast. I can't take a picture of the whole wall because I haven't made the bed in two weeks and the duvet cover is lost in a basket of clean but unfolded laundry - possibly forever.
So here is just a quick snapshot of the new mirror leaning on our sock cabinet (Alex's sock collection is out of control).
Basement Fireplace Tiles
Awhile back I shared a picture of our basement fireplace area.
I mentioned that we were trying to find some tiles that would work with our existing gas stove. Since that last post we have gone ahead and chosen the tiles, ordered them, and picked them up!
Alex hasn't installed them yet but it's still exciting to think that it could happen soon. Here are the tiles we chose.
Despite the weird colouring in my photo, the above tiles are a light grey colour with the look and texture of old wood. They are awesome. We are going to use the small, brick tiles in the fireplace surround behind the stove. We also ordered these tiles in a large, square size for the hearth which will (hopefully) be flush with the flooring.
We ordered only three of these large, reclaimed-wood-look tiles. They will be used around the front of the fireplace surround and the mantle will be built around them. We had to leave some clearance between the mantle and the gas stove so these tiles will do the trick while still looking like real wood.
So those are my little updates for today.
Thanks for reading and just being awesome in general.
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