Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Even When I Complain, In My Garden I Do Best

Chart - "A Sparrow's Song"
Design - "In My Garden"
Designer - With Thy Needle & Thread
Fabric - 40 count Sand Newcastle linen
Fibers - WDW - 1 strand over 2 threads

I made a couple of small changes to the pattern.  I changed the year from 1810 to 2012, and added my initials on the bottom left.
This is another pattern where the strength of the design shines clear with the use of only four colors: WDW's Palomino, Olive, Cappucino, and Light Khaki.  I love the soft colors used in this pallet.  The soft gentle tones remind me of this time of year when the garden is dieing back and readying for Winter.  

The annual drugery chore task of cleaning up for Winter is my most dreaded least favorite part of gardening.  I start stressing about it in September, and it rumbles around in my mind until I finally get down to it sometime in October.  This year I began my "Great Garden Clean Up" on October 17th.  I think as it turns out I'll have spent more hours fussing, and stewing, and planning, and worrying than the actual project will take.  The Back Patio took only two 90-minute sessions to finish. 

The Agaves are now tucked in to the right of the fireplace.  This side of the house faces the south and receives the most benefit from Winter sun.  It absorbs natural BTUs and retains them for hours after the sun sets. 

The Sedums appreciate that the Back Patio is often 3 to 5 degrees warmer than the north-facing Front Porch in the Winter time. 

As all the Sedums and Sempervivums are under the eves, they're safe from the threat of rot.  (In case you were wondering, the milk jugs contain water for our fountain and birdbaths).

I'll probably get a few more Pansies to put on this three-tiered plant stand.  The 'tube' on the white chair is where Tom-Cat sleeps on the nights he must be outside. 

I tucked the many Salvias and Agastaches into this nook.  The white plastic 'cage' stops the deer from eating the Dianthus and a few other 'tasty' plants.  All receive some protection from the wind on the east and north sides.  The walls on two sides also retain any heat generated by Winter sunshine.  If it does get 'extra' cold, then I toss some old blankets over the plants for the night.  I had over 90% survive last Winter in this location. 

After finishing the Back Patio, I began to dismantle the Front Porch.  The first load off: the birds, bunnies, bugs, and watering cans.

Saturday morning I brought in my 18 begonias.  I'll let them spend the Winter in an unheated storage room in my father's shop.  They'll go dormant, and I hope, the tubers will regenerate come Spring.

The first step was to cut them back hard to just a few leaves.   Those I expect to slowly wither and die back as the plants go dormant.  I ended up with a couple of large plastic trugs of blooms and foliage.

Fortunately my Instant Garden Composter was at hand.

By the time she finished up there was not a leaf or petal left.

We have a Winner! Suze (comment #6) is the winner of "The Painted Garden" by Mary Woodin.  Suze you need to contact me to provide a mailing address.  You can do so by clicking "View my Complete Profile" under "About Me" on the right-hand side of the blog. That will take you to "Contact Me" and "Email" where you can reach me off-line.   


Margaret said...

You have a gorgeous house -- love that back patio area! It looks great after the fall cleanup too. Wonderful to see! Love your stitching as well -- and your automatic composter. lol!

Vickie said...

Beth I am just stunned at the beauty of A Sparrow's Song. Wow! It turned out so great. LOVE it.
Wanna come clean up my yard?! I am taking it bit by bit. I wish I could just get it all done. I just can't without a lot of pain. So slowly I go!

The Inspired Stitcher said...

It's fascinating to see how you winterize the garden being a non-gardner myself. I love the colors in the stitching too. I just recently used Cappucino and it may be my new favorite color.

Nicola said...

A composter that fertilises. Brilliant !

cucki said...

wowwww your sampler is so pretty..i love the colors so much..
you have a pretty house..
lots of love for you xxx

Ann at Beadlework. said...

I do like this design, the colours are so calming. The deer photo made me smile, what a lovely treat.

Ranae said...

A sweet design, Love that watering can
Awesome photo of the deer with the flower in her mouth

Mary said...

Just love the last photo with doe and flower in her mouth...looks like "tango anyone".

Barb said...

A Sparrow's Song is just lovely. I think the simple use of color makes it striking. Looks like you do have quite a clean-up!

Pam in IL said...

That's alot of winter prep work you've been doing. How cold does it get in your area?

Sparrow's Song is gorgeous. I love the colors too.

You have a great looking home. How about a walk through your house to show us your indoor garden?

Love that the deer seem to be waiting and watching your prep work in the hopes of getting treats.

Carol said...

This is one of my favorite finishes of yours this year, Beth--the colors are so soothing and the design just fits you so well :)

Love the deer eathing the flowers--we had one visiting the other night eating the old sunflower heads--so cute!

Anna van Schurman said...

Pretty finish! I keep putting off the garden clean up. But my bulbs have arrived so I've got to get out there! This weekend for sure. ;)

Melanie said...

Very nice piece! You could do it with four darker colors and it would look totally, totally different - like a whole new pattern.

If you hadn't said, I would have assumed the water was for an power outages. Of course, I' currently planning for some hurricane action coming our way in a few days so *I* am ferreting out water containers 'just in case'. I do okay overall with no power - except for the lack of running water. Always a bummer, that. *sigh*