Wednesday, July 9, 2008

What did YOU do over the Fourth???

Here's what we did......

We dug and pulled vines from the cottage gardens. If you've been with me since the beginning, you will know from my past posts, that this cottage and garden were abandoned for more than a decade. During that time, the vines (honeysuckle, Virginia creeper, trumpet vine and poison ivy) had taken over, not only the cottage, but the gardens, too.

I've fought them for four years now and decided that they were NOT going to win!! Soooo....out they came. With shovels, picks, saws, hatchets and axes, they have been controlled for now.

We also lowered the gardens by about 18 inches of dirt. The constant movement of those vines had mounded up the soil so that watering became impossible. Every rain or sprinkling by hose ran off and did little good to the plants. Watering also moved so much soil into the paths that they had to be reclaimed each spring. What a chore that was!

I was able to save a few plants and lots of bulbs, so those will be replanted. Sadly, some of the herbs were lost, but will be replanted next year. There are still plenty of herbs left in the other portion of the garden that has not been so invaded with vines.

Here you will see the portion of the garden that we left. It is full of lavender, peppermint, spearmint, lemon balm, bee balm, Russian sage, obedient plant, milk weed (for the butterflies), black eyed susans, purple, pink and white coneflowers, delphinium and sweet william.

As you can see, the bee balm is just beginning to bloom. Believe it or not, it's taller than I am! Most of the herbs bloom in late summer and fall. Next spring, I will move many of these plants to the lower portion of the garden so we can redo this, too. I would miss the blooms by moving them now. It's just too hot here in Michigan right now to guarantee a successful transplanting.

It's amazing what two old people can accomplish, if they set their mind to it! You can click on any photo to enlarge. Thanks for visiting!!

Oh, and don't forget that the Cottage is giving FREE SHIPPING for every purchase in July. Your purchase will help replenish these gardens.


rosechicfriends said...

WOW WERE busy. You yard looks so lush and green and your hard work abounds!


Connie said...

Bertieeeeeeeee, that looks like a lot of - dare I say the word?!?! - WORK, sweetpea!! I don't think I've ever seen the before pix of garden, but that is fantastic, my tiny bird!!

vickie said...

So pretty, Bertie! I want to come and live in your house!

Shirl said...

Hi Bertie, my goodness you were busy this past weekend! What a fantastic job you did, it looks beautiful!
Blessings, Shirl
Shirls Rose Cottage

Irma's Rose Cottage said...

Your yard looks beautiful. Love your herb garden.

Irma :)

Sue said...

Well you two certinly got a lot of good work done on the lower garden. I just love seeing prepared, fresh spaces just waiting to be dressed.

Lori said...

Hi Bertie! Well you just helped me set a goal!! I'm hopeing that by mid September to drive over to Niles and see that garden my self! Were long overdo to meet and once this surgery is over I plan on living again! Sending love and hugs, Lori

Secondhandrose said...

It looks beautiful Bertie and I can't wait to see what all you put in there.

Stephanie ~ Angelic Accents said...

Gosh, Bertie! Lots of work, but the end results were soooo worth it! Did you let Calgon take you away afterwards?!?!

Big TX Hugs,
Angelic Accents

rosechicfriends said...

Hi Bertie...I just left you an award on my blog..come on by and get it!

Love ya Lorena

Nancy at ManicForMosaics said...

Wowser Bertie! That was quit a job but I'm sure it'll be well worth it! You have the loveliest property!

Sharon said...

Bertie your garden is lovely but such a lot of work added to your already hectic schedule.

celestina marie said...

Hi Bertie, WOW you have been busy and it shows. I know this is a lot of work but so rewarding for the look you have achieved.
Congrats on your porch of the month too. You so deserve that and great success with your Shabby Lane Shop.
Have a nice and relaxing weekend.
hugs, Celestina
la rea rose

Ele at abitofpinkheaven said...

Wow! Where do you get all that energy? It is going to look wonderful and it already looks so nice and clean. I know exactly what you mean when you say the weeds were taking over! You better rest that back of yours...maybe go and get a good massage!

KARIN said...

I am GREEN with envy. How I wish I could have the garden space you do! A good garden needs good bones, so I say you are half way there. I can't wait to see your garden grow. We have been in a terrible drought with temps hovering near 100 for weeks on end. My garden is barely limping along :(