Friday, July 31, 2015

The Humble Bungalow Garden ~ A Picture Gallery of Changes.

As promised I am sharing images of the on-going garden changes...
the projects are proceeding slowly as I am doing most of the work myself.

Deer, drought, over grown plants, and high maintenance borders have necessitated these changes.

The David Austin Roses...
greedy for water and slightly high maintenance 
are staying put!

There was a bed in the middle of the gravel driveway that took a lot of work and the plants were not too happy.
I laid down some landscape cloth and covered the base of the rose with bricks and filled the gaps with gravel and then spread a cubic yard of "screenings"over the cloth so none of it shows.

This will pack down nicely with time and blend in with the rest of the drive.

The romneya coulteri likes "living on the edge."

The dry gravel and sand are it's best friends!

The rampant invasive violets were pulled and the bed dug deep and we have laid black garbage bags in hopes that they will not come back.
This bed in the back side yard will be replanted after a few weeks or possibly months.

this bed is also under wraps...
ugly I know but I couldn't bear to spray with toxic chemicals.

This patio is in the side yard
and features two dwarf apple trees and a riot of Lady's Mantle and Limelight Hydrangeas.

It's shady part of the day and a lovely spot to sit with a cup of tea.

Look what we found nestled under the overgrown lilies!
It was a slow release "frog" fertilizer and now it looks prehistoric!

The view from the kitchen...

The slide is in the space where the greenhouse is going to be placed.

The grass is full of clover, buttercups and violets...we hope to find a hardy grass that will be green in winter and gold in summer as we will not be watering it much, if at all depending on the water restrictions.

The bed with the asparagus and two climbing roses will be modified and the hydrangeas will be dug out and the rhubarb and strawberries will be relocated near the green house.

Pots were planted up to add colour and interest.

The intimate patio area just off the back basement door.

Out front we planted more deer and drought tolerant plants...
in the front of the bed we chose Blue Fescue grasses.

The bees love the prickly blue eryngium and the lavenders.
Blue Russian Sage and Salvias are mixed in with yellow rudbeckias
and at the front more Blue Fescue Grasses.

Pots were replanted...

Feather Grass


Black Mondo grass and a Lime Green succulent.

The deer have so far, resisted munching these hydrangeas and I am so grateful!
I have several of these out in the front yard and I love them.

I'm considering swapping this blue and mauve hydrangea for another limelight...

Roses planted with lily of the valley as a ground cover.

I have kept a few Hostas which the deer love to dine on...
(as do the slugs)
I will see what happens over time and if they are munched too often I will place them in the back garden.

At the end of the drive against the fence we have a drought tolerant bed of mostly grasses.
Montbretia, sedum, hostas, black mondo grass, hellebores, variegated iris and planters with succulents.

We are planning to install a greenhouse and redo the grass in the back yard which are major projects that are a bit more of an investment and require hiring the professionals...
So they are not going to happen for awhile...
in the meantime I putter and chip away at the tasks that I can do myself.
It's a lot of work, but it's also a lot of fun!

I hope you've enjoyed seeing what's happening in our patch.

These flowers look like a smiling face...
do you see it?
Hope you have a fabulous weekend.

We're on "Baby Watch" this weekend.
Fingers crossed that wee one comes soon.
We can hardly wait to meet her!


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

LBD ~ Linen Black Dress

Keeping cool has been a personal challenge in this hot summer weather.
We are not accustomed to unrelenting high temperatures here in Victoria and like many people I am learning the hard way how to modify and adapt my routine and habits in accordance with the changing climate.

The roses in The Humble Bungalow Garden are totally loving this summer sunshine and they are putting on a spectacular and repeated display of blooms.
A few David Austin Roses in the front yard have proven to be a delicious snack for our local deer :-(

Roses are rather high maintenance in the heat as they are "thirsty plants"...
I've decided that I am in that "same category" when it comes to maintaining my "cool."

Gardening in the sunshine is certainly thirsty work for this Hostess.
I've been mindful and hydrating while I work sipping sparkling Perrier when I am out in the garden.

A little later in the evening after a hard days work in the garden Mr. HB made me a Gimlet.
Do you know what goes into a Gimlet? I didn't.
Roses Lime Cordial, gin and a slice of lime.
It was delicious...

Our lower level of The Humble Bungalow is cool...
( we turn off the in floor heat for the summer)
I love looking out our French door to the patio when I am ironing or doing the laundry.
Sometimes I take a mug of tea or a cold drink downstairs and gaze out at the garden.
I plan a lot of changes when I sit on the bench.

Amalfi shoes
on the cool tile.

When I am not mucking about in the Humble Bungalow Garden...
(wearing my standard uniform of black Yoga pants and a Tee shirt)
I get cleaned up and change into something a bit nicer...

Lately have been wearing a cool loose black linen dress that was made in Italy.
I purchased it from Mercedes Lane, a shop in the Cook Street Village.
I proudly wear my natural linen dress with wrinkles!

It's a "sack dress" with slouchy pockets but the thing is so darn cool that I grab it more often than any other garment in my closet...the women that I met in the South of France wore Italian linen dresses too and they have very HOT weather there.

I wear a sunhat, sunscreen and sunglasses.
~ ~ ~ 

The Humble Bungalow Garden is undergoing a transformation this summer.
It's long overdue...
with marauding and hungry deer and the recent drought I figure it's as good a time as any.
 I will be posting some updates soon.

A lone Allium stands amid a bed of Lily of the Valley...
these dry beautifully and make an interesting feature in a simple glass vessel.

Thanks for stopping by...

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Sea Ray Summer ~ Friday Harbour

While we were moored at Roche Harbour Marina we decided to spend the day exploring Friday Harbour on San Juan Island. We'd been there before, many years ago, once by boat and once via the Clipper and remembered that it was a quaint historic town with a large grocery shop and many small and interesting stores.
The Washington State ferry docks at Friday Harbour and there is a very large Marina adjacent to where the ferry comes in...if we were staying longer we would have cruised into the harbour and stayed for a day or two to provision.

It was a really hot afternoon and we wandered about for over an hour before ducking into a shady patio for something cold to drink and a bite to eat.

Crab cakes for The Hostess!
(minus all the mayo)

We found a bamboo salad bowl set with a First Nation design in the little kitchen shop.
They are made in Vancouver BC!

Mr. HB spied them and mentioned that if we could find somewhere to stow them that we should purchase them for our boat.
As we were paying I said "Happy Anniversary!"
Our 41st to be exact.

We did take time to relax...
we read our books and wandered along the dock peeking at all the boats.

Easy meals...our "Picky Plate."
(when it's too hot to cook we nibble and "pick at" an assortment of things)
That's Maytag Blue Cheese...made by the son of the Maytag Empire and only available in the US.
We try to buy some each time we go south as it is delicious...
I love it sprinkled on a green salad...
a little goes a long way.

Coffee and foamed milk...
 a good way to savour the start to the day.

Black Yoga capri length pants
a white linen Lands End Tee
Sperry Shoes and an "old as the hills" Eddie Bauer straw hat.

I don't dress up much on the boat.
It's comfort all the way!

The winds were strong Gale Force in all the nearby Straits so we chose to stay another night.
We were up bright and early the next morning and scooted across Haro Strait in our SeaRay before the predicted winds rose up again...

I love the hues of blue and mauve in the petals of this hydrangea.

The garden is shaping up nicely with an energetic and dedicated garden helper on board.
I'm so grateful for an extra pair of hands...
you know that old saying 

"many hands make light work."
~ John Heywood ~

And speaking of hands
 a reader has brought me some of those fabulous Playtex Living gloves from the states.
(which I think is so exciting!)
I'm going to meet up with her this week and visit her new home on Salt Spring Island.

I love the kindness and generosity of people in the blogging community.
I've had great opportunities to meet new people and make connections.
It's something that I never expected...

Thank you!