Welcome to my zone 9 garden. My roots are deeply planted in the sandy soil of sub-tropical central Florida, where the summers are long and hot, but the rest of the year is paradise!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Getting Settled

A lot has happened in the last 3 weeks. We're settling into our new home. There's still a lot of boxes to unpack, but that all takes some time. At the end of our first week, I worked quickly at getting the front yard landscaped so the house looked a little more completed.

Luckily, the section between the road and sidewalk, also known as the "hell strip" is only about 18 inches wide. This is a positive in my book because why waste ground on a tough-to-garden area with numerous limitations. Opting to keep things simple . . . and because family and friends rave about it . . . I went with the Asiatic jasmine groundcover. Hopefully, it will fill in quickly in this small area.

As far as grass goes, this and a very small section on the right side of the driveway is it. A small, almost circular, patch of zoysia grass. Zoysia because the city gave me two choices: zoysia or bahia - no St. Augustine allowed anymore. I opted for zoysia because I've grown bahia before, and I didn't think it would perform well in this much shade. So, there will be a learning curve with this new turf, but at least there's a minimum amount of it.

In the last week and a half, I've been feverishly moving plants from my mother and sister's homes. This is a narrow strip on the side of the house, so I'll be doing a walkway and some vertical gardening here. I'm hoping to hang my orchids from the trellis once some vines are established. 

 There's more plants just hanging out in the backyard waiting to be planted, and 

also on the other side of the house. I've definitely got my work cut out for me from now until May when the weather starts to warm up. My plants are not very happy with me after hanging out in pots over a long, hot summer. I'm going to need to work quickly to get them in the ground where they'll be happy once again. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


One thing that is certain in life is "change!" A lot of change has happened in the past 2 years, and the time had come to simplify my life... a smaller and more manageable home and garden. A place where I can live for many, many years . . . grow old and still be able to manage my home and yard. So, a small lot was purchased, home plans drawn up and 5 months of construction ensued. 

Before I moved from my previous home which was located on 6 acres, I potted up 125 plus plants for use in the new garden. These potted plants were temporarily located at my mother's and sister's homes while my new home was built. My mother kept saying, "I don't know where you're going to put all these plants in your new yard." Sometimes I had doubts about that, too. But I have this vision in my mind. You know. The kind of visions that gardeners have when they're dreaming up their new garden.

The only problem is every time I would walk around my new home being built, I noticed that those visions weren't matching up with the reality of "the small garden" that would soon be mine. If they don't all fit... no problem, I'll share them with other gardeners. But, I'm going to do my best to get all my favorites in my garden. Now, all I need to do is finish unpacking all the boxes so I can get my garden going.

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