Showing posts with label Gardening. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gardening. Show all posts

A Tropical Update

Apr 18, 2014

Are you ready for some palm trees?!


It all started with the two palms behind the waterfall. I just wanted to soften the rocks a bit and loved the way it looked so much that I went back for more a few more palms, and then a few more. Throw a few hibiscus in and I now have a vacation in my backyard. I also had enough dirt in the back of my suv to sprout a garden. That's the price of DIY!

I'm so eating my words now. When we put in our pool I told my husband I didn't want any tropical plants since it didn't fit with our landscape or our home. We planted crepe myrtles and knockout roses instead. They are pretty, but I just wasn't getting that vacation vibe when I walked outside and saw this.


And now...


Much better! I finally bought a couple of pool loungers, too. I decided against the teak loungers that match our outdoor dining table since it hasn't held up that well. You just can't beat the durability of plastic. And they were extremely cheap so if they get damaged I won't feel sick over them.


The large tree is a queen palm. I was hesitant to plant something that gets up to 20ft tall so close to the pool, but the roots are very small and won't damage the foundation. The sago palm is the smaller one and it gets to be a max of 6ft tall. They are nice in flowerbeds, which is why I put one in the bed near the fence.


I love the knockout roses, but I really want to cover the eyesore of a fence. They will probably be transplanted to the front yard later this summer.


As you can see, there is quite a bit of fence to cover up. Once the plants get marked down to 70% off in August at our local garden center I will load up on more palms, banana trees, and elephant ears.


If you're wondering why we have gaps in between the hibiscus, it's because we needed to leave the area behind the fire pits open.

We had a patio area of flagstone put in for chairs when using the fire pits.


The second fire pit and patio on the other side of the palms.


And, a Mario photo bomb.


Isn't this so much better? I'm finding any excuse to go outside and enjoy it. There's still a lot of work to be done out here, but it's come such a long way. Have a great weekend!

TDC Before and After

My Two Favorite and Inexpensive House Plants

Apr 15, 2014

How was your weekend? We had great weather here and then it turned windy, cold and rainy yesterday. Before the temperature dropped 35 degrees we took full advantage of the weather and bought enough plants to turn our backyard into a rainforest. At least that's what my 8 year old called it. I love my kids perspective on our projects. I'll have pictures later in the week of the backyard (or rainforest) once the sun comes out again. I also picked up two of my favorite house plants while out shopping. I love them because they go in any room.  Most of the stores have their orchids out, but only the grocery store has them for $10. That store is HEB for fellow Texans! I picked one up to replace the one I killed in the living room.
I've been moving it around the house to see where else it could go-the mantel, the coffee table, the end table, the bedroom, the bathroom vanity and tub (it's called a garden tub after all :), and the entry table. It looks good everywhere!  I also bought a couple of regency palms since Wal-Mart had them on sale for $10. You probably noticed them on my upstairs balcony in a recent post.  DSC_3432
I have two of these on the balcony. One is behind the camera in the corner. They are great for privacy when I want to wear my pjs out here, which I did yesterday. Not to mention there's something about palms that put me in an instant vacation mood. As with the orchid, I've been moving them around the house and they look good everywhere. One ended up in the entryway.  DSC_3864

And the other is in the living room.


I also like the way they look on the front porch, the office, the bedroom and the dining room. It's a great and inexpensive way to fill an empty corner. Doesn't every room have one of those? Now, I'm off to find a couple of new planters!

Outdoor Spaces

Apr 1, 2014

It's the most wonderful time of the year! For enjoying outdoor spaces, that is. Alfresco meals, doors and windows thrown open to let the breeze in, heated pool for the kids, and margaritas on the patio at local restaurants were the highlights of my weekend. We are beginning the best season for weather in Houston and I'm planning on taking full advantage of it before summer hits. One of the things I love most about my house is the number of outdoor spaces I have to enjoy this great weather.

The front porch


The pool

And the balcony off the master bedroom


That's a lot of outdoor spaces for a fairly small home. How small? I'm not sure if I've ever revealed this before, but my home is just under 2300 square feet. When you have three boys, an escape room is important. Outdoor areas are perfect since the yelling from inside is muted.

Besides the plants I killed, the front porch and balcony are in pretty good shape. I never really got to finish the pool area last year since most of the d├ęcor was sold out by the time our pool was finished. Here are a few things I have my eye on to finish it off.

9' Auto Tilt Umbrella

I really wanted this black and white striped umbrella last year from Ballard Designs, but considering I needed two of them I could not justify the cost and went with plain red ones. I'll be watching these at the end of summer for a good sale and a coupon. I have to at least get two seasons out of my red ones. Isn't the black and white so chic?

Pool loungers are at the top of my list!

I've also decided to put in palm trees behind our waterfall. I feel like the rocks need a bit of softening. Have you ever priced palms? They can be insanely expensive and it's so hard to decide which ones to buy since there are so many varieties. I'm leaning towards the Mediterranean Palm because they're pretty. We'll see what my yard guy says tomorrow about these. I hope he doesn't burst my bubble by telling me they shed or won't grow well in this climate. He'll be planting the trees for me because I don't trust my planting skills. Painting, yes. Planting, no.

This is probably my first project that doesn't require woodwork, paint or any elbow grease at all on my part. I could get used to this!