Saturday, June 11, 2011

Fresh Herbs and Landscaping

In my last house in WV we were able to have a little garden area with veggies and herbs.  Here in Delaware I don't have grass out back so a garden was not in the cards.  However, I knew that I wanted to have some fresh herbs lying around for cooking.

The picture that is the new header on this page is my funky new example of planting herbs.  Even if you have the teeniest, tiniest patch of dirt you can plant 4-5 different herbs.
The idea for this arrangement came about when me, Courtney and my mom were at a local nursery and saw them displaying plants this way.  The pole is actually a piece of rebar....that stuff they use to reinforce concrete and buildings.
Here's how you do it...
1.  Buy a small piece of rebar at your local hardware store.  $1.99
2.  Spray paint the rebar with any color that you would like....unpainted they're kind of a gross rusty color.
3.  Pick our as many herbs as you think will fit on your piece of rebar.
         -  From the top to bottom I have basil, rosemary, and cilantro.
4.  Buy pots for the herbs...they must have a hole in the bottom.  $3 a piece for terracotta pots.
5.  Courtney and I painted these pots with chalkboard paint, and it looks totally cute if you write the name of the herb in chalk on the side.
6.  Also feel free to paint the rims bright colors like Courtney did.
7.  Throw some potting soil in your herb pots and plant them.
8.  Make sure to water them at least once daily.  I've been doing twice daily since it's been so hot and humid. 
Courtney doesn't really have an outdoor space, so she put these in her kitchen window and they look great!!  All they need is sunlight, whether or not you put them indoor or out.

Let's talk landscaping...or lack thereof.  When Andy and I moved to this new neighborhood, we were drawn to how manicured and landscaped everyone's lawns were.  Everyone had flowers and beautiful trees that were well taken care of.  However, our house had not been loved in the landscaping department.  Basically, the people who lived here had never trimmed any of their shrubs or planted flowers since they moved in. 
This is us when we moved into the house.  Check out the overgrown, 1980s style holly bushes.  Bleh! These pieces of crap are for people who don't like to do anything in their yards.
 This is the overgrown backyard (and that's Andy's fish tank stuff.).  These people seriously had no sense of style when it came to their yard.  Really???  I think we'll just plant random bushes wherever we feel.
  My parents came up for the weekend with the only intention being that they were going to help with landscaping.  My parents have a beautiful yard because they love to garden and plant flowers.  They were such a big help to me, and gave me the landscaping as a housewarming gift.

First off, we ripped out all of those plants in the retaining wall.  They were both overgrown and unsightly, and I prefer lots of color in landscaping, not greenery.  Also, there was no mulch and the sellers had just thrown down ugly rocks. 
Now when you look at this you might be thinking, "Well now there's nothing there."  The plants I picked out are perennials (will come back each year) and will get very big and full.  Unfortunately, you have to start small. The yellow flowers in the center are St. John's Wort, and will grow to be a huge cheerful yellow bush.  The 2 plants flanking each side of that are a really pretty species of daisies in white.
 All you had to do here was fill the space with potting soil, plant the flowers, and then cover in black mulch.  I also added little solar lights for a nice little touch.

This is the side of the yard where I now have my herbs planted.  I also have 2 extra pots beside the with a roma tomato plant and the other with a yellow bell pepper plant.

This is the entrance into the laundry room from the back porch.  The hanging pot was painted bright yellow already and I also found it at the nursery.  The flowers that are in there are beautiful and bloom up a bright orangey yellow.  The pot on the ground has white impatiens.

Remember those ugly holly bushes????  Gone!!  We ripped those suckers out and planted 2 pink knockout rose bushes.  I can't remember the name of those yellow flowers, but they're just being used as filler for now until the rose bushes get full grown.  Also added solar lights up here along with a flag with our initial.
 Table with 6 chairs..$100 on Craig's List.  Umbrella $40 at Big Lots.

There you have it.  The newly landscaped Whitley lawn.  Throughout the week, people stopped to tell us that our yard hadn't looked that good in 20 years.  One quick last note...the light fixture above our street number was also replaced.  ($19.99 at Lowe's)  The initial fixture was a hideous brass one.

Stay tune for my next post!!

1 comment:

  1. It looks great!!! I love having fresh herbs to just pick right out of a pot. It's so much cheaper than buying the fancy packaged ones in the grocery store. I love landscaping, but down here it can literally be hazardous, especially in Fort Myers where we're moving to. Fort Myers sits on a stretch of road called Alligator Alley, and for good reason. There's also a ton of venomous snakes and these crazy Nile monitor lizards that are huge and lurk in your gardens. Yuck.