Simple Ways to Bring Easter Beauty Into Your Home

The Lenten season is one of my favorite times of the years.  But, like many holidays, we all can lose focus of its real meaning.  It’s easy to get caught up in the flurry of Easter egg hunts, parties, and other activities that can steal our joy in celebrating the resurrection of Christ.  Over the past few weeks, I have enjoyed creating a few easy, and cost-effective ways of sharing the glorious flowers of spring with my family and others.  Floral design need not be expensive or take taxing  hours of labor to create aesthetically pleasing creations for your Easter celebration. I hope this post will give you inspiration as I share ideas that I have collected over the past few weeks.

A sweet friend, Michele Plagenhoef, recently arranged potted hydrangeas in an urn for a special reception, and then returned the arrangement for our enjoyment.  I had fun “playing” around in the garden with it..

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The hydrangeas were put in a heaving plastic liner  that can be transferred to other types of containers.

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Add a few Easter eggs, bunnies, and moss if desired . . .

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My garden club hosted a brunch this week, and I love their ideas.  Becky Hewitt added a cabbage leaf and her collection of Mississippi McCarty bunnies to the serving table while Nelda Northcutt designed tablescapes using grapevine wreaths filled with Alstroemeria and Pittosporum to represent Jesus’ crown of thorns..

 

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This charming kitchen counter display was shared by Janet Loftin.  I love the blue and yellow combination.  You can never have too much McCarty pottery!

 

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My Master Gardener friend from Atlanta, Lisa Mann, shared these spring garden treasures from her yard for an elegant sideboard design.

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Easter floral design accomodates my obsession with baskets!  A quick trip to a garden center will give you inspiration for endless possibilities in creating Easter baskets of your own or as a gift.  They can be used on literally any surface in your home.  I found vintage styled baskets at the Dollar Tree that I couldn’t resist.  Grab your gloves and some potting soil and start creating.  There are no hard fast rules in adding the plants – just choose a variety of annuals, green plants, and/or herbs along with some moss and you are in business..

Line baskets with plastic liners..

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Choose plants for individual baskets.  Good choices include small ferns, Pentas, Calla lilies, Zinnias, Begonias, Lantana, mint, Petunias, Duranta, Dianthus, Dahlberg Daisies, Kalanchoes,  Alyssum, Mexican Heather, and lavender.

 

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Remove plants from their original  pots and shake off enough soil so they can easily fit into the basket.

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Carefully place plants and add additional soil as needed.  Finish off with decorative or fresh moss.

 

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These can literally be completed in minutes!  Add Easter colored raffia if desired to embellish your basket.

 

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Our Lord has written the promise of the resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in spring-time. – Martin Luther

An Easter Garden Gift

About this time each year, a  gift of literally divine proportions occurs in the garden of my neighbor and friend, Maurine Johnston.  A trinity of Cherokee Roses, Lorapetalum, and grape like clusters of  Wisteria comes cascading over her fence.  The purple, burgundy, and white combination creates the most glorious spring spectacle. The Cherokee Rose sprawls across adjacent shrubs and literally forms a canopy of extravagant blooms.  God uses so much symbolism in our gardens, and I couldn’t help but think about how the colors displayed here paint the Easter story so beautifully.  The red/fuchsia colored blooms of the Lorapetalum represent the blood Jesus shed for us.  Purple, represented by the Wisteria, is  the color of royalty and  also represents suffering.  Purity, grace, and the power of the resurrection is represented by the white blooms of the Cherokee Rose which also, incidentally, is extremely prickly.  As Jesus was led away to be crucified, he wore a purple robe and a twisted crown of thorns on his head.

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The Cherokee Rose, native to southern China and Taiwan,  was introduced to the United States about 1780.  A proliferant climber, it often reaches 33 feet, and behaves as though it is a native plant.  The rose, both disease free and drought resistant, blooms once in the spring, but with favorable conditions will sometimes produce a second flowering in the fall,  At the urging of women’s’ club in the state of Georgia, it was named their state flower in 1916.  The Cherokee Rose is linked to the “Trail of Tears”, a tragic event that occurred in 1838.  Thousands of Cherokee Indians were forced out of Georgia and areas east of the Mississippi River to relocate.

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My garden is also the recipient of this magnificent floral display!  I couldn’t resist picking some of the delightful, pristine rose blooms to arrange.  Use gloves to protect against the thorns while cutting them!

They look so fresh in small alabaster urns, and the blooms will be pretty for a couple of days.

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I even used the porcelain like blooms to garnish a friend’s birthday cake!

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What a glorious morning as we celebrate Palm Sunday!  This was my view early today..  Thanks, Maurine!!

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I embellished my rustic cross that I love to use each Easter with the pristine roses..

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 “Forgiveness costs us nothing.  All our costly obedience is the fruit, not the root, of being forgiven.  That’s why we call it grace.  But it cost Jesus His life.  That is why we call it just.  Oh, how precious it the news that God does not hold our sins against us!  And how beautiful is Christ, whose blood made it right for God to do this”.

-John Piper

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Living Easter Baskets

Easter, the season of celebrating life and hope, is one of my favorite holidays as the resurrection of Christ is observed.  Childhood memories linger of  live bunnies, ducks, chickens, gathering brightly colored eggs, new Easter dresses often designed and made by my Mother (always complemented by white gloves and the perfect straw hat with ribbons and flowers), and  the quintessential Easter basket!

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I finally gave up doing my children’s Easter baskets when they left for college!  Now instead I love creating living Easter baskets with fresh seasonal flowers, foliage, grass, and moss.

This year as well as last year I planted a rye grass seed mixture in plastic liners that will later be set in baskets and containers for a table display.  With very minimal effort and some bright sunny days, you can expect to see significant growth in about a week.

First select the containers and baskets that you would like to use.  Place fresh potting soil in the plastic liners followed by a generous application of seed.  Gently work into the top layer of soil.  Water well, and set outside in a sunny location.

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After about 5-7 days, the grass is making progress…

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In another few days, the grass will be ready for doing an Easter tablescape.  There is still time to grow your own grass before Easter if you plant in the next couple of days.

The pictures below were made last year, and were done for a garden club demonstration.  Look for more pictures of incorporating grass in floral Easter designs soon.

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In the two pictures below, clumps of rye grass were placed around the urn.

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To design your own Easter basket, purchase seasonal flowers at your local market, and utilize the fresh blooms in your own garden.

Tulips, hydrangeas, star gazer lilies,  forsythia, pear blossoms, Ligustrum,  and cuttings of Loropetalum and Golden Sunrise Spirea are great choices to bring a breath of spring to your home.

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Select baskets and place oasis soaked liners in them.

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Carefully insert forsythia around the handle into the oasis.

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Stems of hydrangea are added first since the stems are more dense and woody.

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Tulips and star gazer lilies are inserted next.

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Below delicate  Bradford Pear blossoms and Golden Sunrise Spirea are added.

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Loropetalum and statice  add vibrant pops of pink and purple hues to the baskets.

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Mist the completed arrangement with water.

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Hopefully, you will be inspired with the fresh colors of the spring palette to create your own natural and uncontrived living Easter basket to enjoy in your home or perhaps as a gift for a friend…

 

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Let the resurrection joy lift us from loneliness and weakness and despair to strength and beauty and happiness. – Floyd W. Tomkins

 

Celebrating Fifty Years Along Dothan’s Azalea Dogwood Trail

Spring is inaugurated about this time each year in the Dothan area with the long awaited viewing of the Azalea Dogwood Trail scheduled to open this Sunday afternoon, April 6, 2014.  With the azalea blooms and Dogwood trees at their peak, local residents as well as visitors from the Florida Panhandle and southwest Georgia can take a leisurely, scenic tour of one of the most beautiful areas of the city:  the historical garden district.  The heralded Azalea Dogwood Trail, dotted with lovely maidens dressed in antebellum period dresses on meticulously landscaped lawns, has been a tradition here for the past fifty years.  Azaleas, referred to as “Royalty of the Garden”, are found in virtually every garden district home in a variety of magnificent pink, red, and white hues.  The annual ribbon cutting at the intersection of Main Street and Woodland Street is scheduled to  take place at 1:50 P.M. on Sunday afternoon.

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Many different architectural styles are represented in the garden district such as Cottage, Georgian, French, Craftsman, Neoclassical, Tudor, and Bungalow.  French, Italian, and contemporary influences are also seen.  If you don’t live in the area, take a pictorial tour through the weaving streets lined with masses of live oak and dogwood trees, vibrant azaleas, spiraling cascades of spirea, and opulent blossoms of wisteria.  What a poignant impressionistic picture  nature paints!

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Enjoy the rebirth and hope of this glorious spring weekend….

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“Snips and snails and Puppy Dog Tails, That’s What Little boys Are Made of…”

As I pointed out in the previous post, one of the joys of a friendship is celebrating those milestones and other celebrations in a close acquaintance’s life.  The Crockett family has been near and dear to me for many years.  Olivia Crockett  is a testimony to the Lord’s faithfulness in her life.   And what an influence she and her husband, Frank, have had on the five children they have raised!  They will be learning the art of grandparenting  in just a few short weeks as their daughter and son-in-law, Elizabeth and David Saliba excitedly anticipate their son’s birth.  Is seems that only yesterday we were packing our bags to travel to Mobile to watch Elizabeth represent  Alabama in America’s Junior Miss Program!  Dale and Fred  Saliba, are  rejoicing in the upcoming birth of their first grandchild as well.  Both families are soon to be experiencing all of the joys that encompass the miracle of a new life.

A group of Dothan family friends recently transformed the beautiful home of Melissa and Jack Jackson into a sentimental baby-themed shower to honor Elizabeth.

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Radiant cascades of  Carolina Jasmine, covering an arbor in the back  courtyard, added a cheerful touch to the floral arrangements.

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The front door’s grapevine wreath, covered with sprigs of jasmine,  carried out the nursery’s giraffe theme.

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Master gardener, Judy Wise, cut dozens of her prized camellia blooms for the flower arrangements.  Melissa planted beautiful elephant ear plants in both urns with  near the front door.  Camellias, inserted in water picks, were inserted around the base.

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A vintage baby carriage, infant scale, and bath tub from the collection of Debbie Hundley helped set the theme for a lovely afternoon.  The guests first glimpse of the theme was the antique wicker  baby carriage decorated with playful balloons and favors for each guest.

 

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Mary Crittenden designed artful cellophane wrapped bags of blue and silver Dove eggs tied with ribbon and blue diaper pins for guests to take home.

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In the foyer,  an antique iron bathtub was used  as a spot for placing gifts.

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Small containers of Creeping Jenny, camellias, Carolina Jasmine, and ‘Jack Frost’ ligustrum comprised the arrangement in the vintage baby scale.

 

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More family room arrangements . . .

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A trio of vases  nestled in a wrought iron container and filled with yellow roses and jasmine add a cheerful pop of color in the kitchen.

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The dining room sideboard,  centered with an ivy ring decorated with a pacifier and porcelain baby shoes, held an assortment of desserts.

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Elegant displays of Judy Wise’s spectacular camellias were used throughout the reception areas.

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A large silver epergne  on the dining room table was filled with jasmine, forsythia, camellias, pear blooms,  and ligustrum.  Silver baby cups from the Jackson’s collection held tiny yellow spray roses.

 

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Silver baby cups, a porringer and a rattle from the three Jackson children’s infancy lended a nostalgic touch to the serving table.

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Throughout the afternoon, three generations of friends and relatives gathered  to enjoy a fabulous array of “tried and true” Southern treats and delicacies as well as celebrate the arrival a new precious baby boy.

 

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Pictured below are Olivia Crockett, Elizabeth Saliba and Dale Saliba.

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Thank heaven for little boys!.

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A beautiful baby boy,
God’s wonderful little gift
Our precious little child
The Lord has blessed us with
Ever so precious to Jesus
And full of His grace,
May he grow to be a man
That will always seek God’s face.

© By M.S.Lowndes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice.. That’s What Little Girls are Made of”

For over twenty years I have called Alabama my home, and how blessed I have been with wonderful friendships that have carried me through all of life’s journeys.  Karen May is once such friend!  I have watched her joy in planning the weddings of her daughters, Courtney and Lauren.  And, more recently, she has taken on a new role as “KayKay” with the birth of Courtney and John Calhoun’s daughter, Lucy Ann, back in July.  What a wonderful afternoon we spent celebrating Lucy Ann’s birth as sweet friends and relatives stopped by to “Ooh and “Ahh” over this precious little gift from above.  Kim and Henry Hart’s lovely traditional home was the setting for a memorable afternoon.  True to form, I chose what was blooming in my yard as a backbone for the floral arrangements.  Two different varieties of pink spray roses, Baby’s Breath, and Jack Frost Ligustrum supplemented the serving table’s’ floral design.

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One of the treasures I found in my parent’s home was a pink ceramic cradle that someone sent to my Mother in the hospital when I was born.   I filled it with soaked oasis to start the design process.  Blocks of oasis were also added to two white pedestal cake stands.  Flowers and greenery were arranged on the pedestals, stacking the smaller one on top of the larger one.  Finally, the ceramic cradle was added to the top for the serving table arrangement.

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An adorable banner greeted guests as they entered the Hart home,  and Limelight hydrangeas were arranged in a vintage piece of porcelain on an antique bowfront chest.

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What a delightful Sip and See celebrating sweet Lucy Ann’s arrival!

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Courtney’s adorable cousin, Savannah, holding Lucy Ann . . .

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 Karen (KayKay)  and Lucy Ann at her recent baptism.  Karen made the gorgeous christening gown…

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Your precious little girl
Is a blessing from the Lord,
A beautiful expression of God’s grace
And what His love is for
May she grow before the Lord
As His princess that she is
For she has come into the world
For such a time as this.

© By M.S.Lowndes

 

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STAY POSTED FOR ANOTHER BABY CELEBRATION:  “FROGS AND SNAILS AND PUPPY-DOGS’ TAILS” – THAT’S WHAT LITTLE BOYS ARE MADE OF”

A Camellia Paradise

About ten miles south of Dothan, Alabama just  off Highway 231-South lies the small community of Madrid and the home to a virtual camellia paradise.  For the past fifteen years or so, Linda and Bill Nichols have been cultivating the pine tree laden acres surrounding their lovely home with a multitude of varieties of prize winning camellias.  There are literally hundreds of camellias on their property, and with the addition of new specimens each year, they have lost count, too!  Their passion for growing spectacular camellia blooms just seems to grow over time.  Bill has even done original wood carved signs for identification purposes, and has become quite proficient at the grafting process as well.  Active in the Southeast Alabama Camellia Society, the couple’s  magnificent camellias win top show honors locally and regionally.  They enthusiastically spent a recent afternoon showing me their incredible camellia garden.  After seeing these photographs (which don’t truly capture their beauty), you will feel as though you have been at a world class garden show.

 

 

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Linda and Bill Nichols – master camellia gardeners..

Feast your eyes on these glorious blooms . . .

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Marie Bray

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Rebel Yell

 

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One of Bill’s handcarved wooden identification signs in the garden.

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Laural Walker

 

La Peppermint is a stunning camellia . . .

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Doris Ellis is pictured below.

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Julie…

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Happy Birthday truly is worthy of a celebration!

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Pearl Terry, with its show stopping velvety pink blooms, won top honors at the local 2013 camellia show.  This is one of my favorites..

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Mary Fisher

 

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Delta Dawn

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Pictured below are the elegant blooms of Mrs. D.W. Davis

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The ever popular Frank Hooser.

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Ma-Dot-Cha, pictured below, was originated by Mr. and Mrs. Mark Cannon of Dothan, AL, and first bloomed in 1962.  The camellia was named for their three daughters.

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Ma-Dot-Cha

 

One of my very favorite white camellias is Dahlonega.

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This unusual camellia is appropriately named Cardinal’s Cap!

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Mary Fisher

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Cherries Jubilee

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Red Velvet

Linda displays Black Magic, one of her favorites.

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Mary Alice

 

Georgia National Fair pictured below . . .

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Feast your eyes on more garden grandeur…

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Buttons ‘n Bows

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Happy Times

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Pretty Lady

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Jubilation

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Alisa James

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Mark Allen

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Walt’s Time Variety

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Emperor of Russia Variety

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Miss Charleston

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Ray Gentry Variety

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Linda Carol

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Lady Panola

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Maroon and Gold

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Blue Danube

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Elaine’s Betty

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Pete Galli

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Wendy

 

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Black Gold

Lovely winged elm trees line the front part of their property.  They have generously shared the unique branches with me for floral design over the past years.

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Thanks to the Nichols for their hospitality and for opening the garden gates to their own enchanted refuge of rambling woodland pathways filled with masses of camellia pompons.  I look forward to more excursions to their inspirational garden retreat.  Their camellia collection has to be one of the most diverse and largest in the tri-state area:   A tour of their garden is already on my garden club’s calendar for 2015!

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Leaving you with the simple splendor of a pristine white camellia . . .

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“If you would have a mind at peace, a heart that cannot harden, go find a door that opens wide upon a lovely garden.”

 

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Dreaming of Daffodils

While in Mississippi last weekend, I couldn’t resist photographing the glorious abundance of daffodils which are making their spring debut.   After a long, cold and colorless winter, daffodils sing of hope of joy!  Their sunny blooms, although short-lived, just make the day seem worry free and brighter.  In my last post, I pointed out the cheerful bed of daffodils surrounding the old Bodock tree that divides the property  between the home of my family and our neighbors, the Peeples. Jean and Bill Peeples have created a tranquil sitting area under the tree with this lovely wrought iron settee and chairs, and this time of year, I cannot think of a better place to sit, meditate, and smell the sweetly scented jonquils and daffodils.

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Daffodils have a relatively short life span, but their availability, affordability, and sunny blooms definitely compensate for this factor.  I cut the daffodils pictured below mid-morning, and after traveling six hours with them, they surprisingly lasted for a couple of days.

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I placed bunches of daffodils in tall glass cylinders that are nestled in rattan containers.  I used a few Cast Iron plant leaves to camouflage the space at the top of the vases.  A vintage blue cloth that was my Grandmother’s creates a pretty vignette.

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Even my cat has a case of spring fever!

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When doing flower arrangements, look no further than your cabinets, garage, or attic space to find containers that can totally be repurposed to create a unique display.  The cylinder containers below were used years ago at my Daddy’s family practice office while the small cup on the left was a 25th wedding anniversary gift to him from my Mother. I then placed three of the cylinders on a pewter tray, and created height by elevating it on an aluminum cake stand.

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The skies can’t keep their secret!  They tell it to the hills  – The hills just tell the orchards – And they the daffodils!”    -  Emily Dickinson

I hope your weekend is filled with all the wonders of spring..

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A Mississippi Spring – Reflections on Gardening, Family and Friendships

Spring is definitely in full bloom in my hometown of Pontotoc in north Mississippi.  I spent the weekend there enjoying the glorious weather while capturing some of the early spring blooms with my ever ready camera. Another highlight of the weekend was visiting with some of our life long friends who were especially close to my parents.  The appearance of the  delicate, showy white star shaped blooms of the Star Magnolia tree in the front yard of the home where I grew up in signals that spring is here!  Planted by a dear family friend, Wadelo Waldrop, many years ago, this deciduous tree is native to Japan.  While the defining feature of this beautiful specimen tree is its flowers,  the Star Magnolia also produces a reddish-green aggregate fruit in the autumn that is perfect for fall and Thanksgiving  floral design.

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Wadelo and his wife, Mary Jane, have a expansive pine tree wooded area in their yard that creates the ideal growing conditions for their prized camellias.  Although the blooms have been affected by the recent episodes of frigid temperatures in north Mississippi, their lovely bushes have resurged for spring.

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Even this lichen covered log reminds me of spring awakening…

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Lenten rose (Helleborus Orientalis), another  spring favorite, is an excellent shade perennial as well as a ground cover.  While new growth appears in late January and February, the petals of the Lenten rose are actually sepals, and will not drop as readily as other flowers.  Their blooms can be enjoyed for up to ten weeks!   The following photographs are from the garden of long time friends, Jane and Toby Winston.

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Spring is infused with the rich golden color of forsythia as seen in the garden of neighbors  Michael and Bob Pennington..

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Jean and Bill Peeples are the kind of neighbors that everyone dreams of!  There is absolutely nothing they wouldn’t do for us.  The times they have gone above and beyond the duties of a good neighbor are too numerous to mention.   We have been the recipient of their graciousness, hospitality, kindness, and friendship for almost a forty year span.  The large Bodock tree dividing our families’ property becomes a glorious display of varying hues of yellow and white jonquils and daffodils in the early spring which Jean and my Mother planted over the years. After the Peeples built their home, she admired my Mother’s early spring daffodils, and planted some of her own which look picturesque against the texture of the trees’s gnarled roots.

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A bed of daffodils near their potting shed provides a colorful backdrop for the many birds that come to the pair of  mounted bird feeders.

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Masses of spirea, commonly referred to as Bridal Wreath, also  add  splendor to the Peeples’ yard.

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Over the course of the almost forty-five years that my parents lived in this home, they cultivated fruit trees, planted at least a dozen magnolia trees, designed perennial gardens and planted hydrangeas,  grew tomatoes and herbs,  and, of course, tended approximately one hundred fifty rose bushes in Mother’s beloved rose garden.  I can only imagine the many quiet, meditative times Mother had in the early morning hours when she was cutting the dew drenched roses.

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Daddy’s role was more of a maintenance one as he spent hours setting out mole traps when necessary, playing “mechanic” with the lawn implements, and experimenting with disease and pest control solutions for the roses and tomatoes after sometimes consulting with several different county extension services in the north Mississippi area!  I can remember Daddy patiently “doctoring” the massive pecan tree overlooking the terrace to groom sagging branches as well as nurturing diseased apple trees and delighting in the fig tree which seemed to become more productive with each passing summer.  After Daddy retired in 2003, he spent many hours in the late fall collecting chestnuts for my Mother’s favorite chestnut soup and famous chestnut cornbread dressing.  Mother’s pride and joy was a Corkscrew Willow tree that she loved using in her extraordinary floral designs.  My Daddy ordered a special lopping pole pruner to expedite the branch harvesting.  I can remember the many times that he cut branches from the tree and packed them in my trunk to take home to Alabama.

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The love and passion for  gardening was always a part of my parents’  lives -  passed down to them from their parents and grandparents.  Even in the garden today, my Great-Grandmother’s Chestnut rose bush along with ferns transplanted from the home place of my Daddy’s family physician and mentor in the 1940′s and 1950′s stand to remind me of the legacy they so lovingly created .

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One of the greatest rewards of their gardening, however, was sharing the fruits of their labor with their countless friends and relatives.  I cannot count the times that my Mother had friends over to share her garden gifts or to simply give them some of her expert gardening advice.  What an untold number of friendships probably started in their garden!  I am so thankful for the profound influence their gardening and cultivation of the land had on my two sisters and me!  And, now, a new generation will start writing another chapter in the Patterson garden….

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“Out of gardens grow fleeting flowers but lasting friendships”.  – Beverly Rose Hopper

Tabletop Terrariums – The Perfect Indoor Gardens

Creating a terrarium is the perfect way to add a touch of green as well as charm to your home. And after an absence of many years, they are back in fashion as a tabletop accessory.   One of the earliest science projects I remember doing with my Mother’s assistance was creating a  terrarium in a glass rectangular container that was first used for our guppies and goldfish!   While the variety of shapes and sizes of glass containers today is virtually  endless,  a “themed” terrarium can easily be created for most anywhere in your home, porch, or even in an outdoor room or on a porch.  Ferns, succulents, kalanchoes, African violets, miniature orchids, and tropical green plants are excellent plant selections for indoor gardens.  Great sources for containers include craft stores, antique shops, and thrift stores.   Tabletop gardens, economical and surprisingly easy to create, are fun projects for both adults and children alike.

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To create your own miniature tabletop garden, you will need:

*  Glass wide-mouthed container

*  Gravel or small stones

* Activated charcoal

* Potting Soil and/or sand

* Gloves

*Tongs

*Large plastic syringes

* Plants

*Moss

Recently my talented friend, Janet Loftin, created a couple of terrariums, and even included got her  precious grandson in on the fun.

First arrange all materials for the project.

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Add a layer of gravel or stones, followed by a layer of activated charcoal.

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We used a combination of potting soil and sand since we were using succulents. Carefully place the plants as desired.

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Next use a clean brush and/or a large syringe filled with water to clean dirt or sand off the plants’ surfaces.

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Place sheet moss carefully around the plants.

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Be careful not to overwater the terrarium.

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The terrarium, placed on its stone base, will add a touch of spring to any corner in your home.  Try placing a decorative bird, rabbit, etc. around your garden.

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A large cyclinder is another perfect way to create a tabletop terrarium.  I especially love the copper accents.

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Sweet five-year old Ellis need only hear the words “dirt”, “charcoal” and “rocks” to know that he wanted to get involved in this project.  Of course the most appealing part of this was creating a special birthday gift for his Mother.  Since younger children often do not have a long attention span, this project is ideal since it can literally be done in minutes!

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A couple of weeks after our afternoon of creating terrariums, I was cleaning out the attic at my parents’ Mississippi home.  Amazingly, I unearthed my old science project beneath a couple of shutters. Truly a gift and an unbelievable surprise after at least forty years!

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Another treasure I found was our original guppy aquarium that had also been used for terrariums as well.  Lisa Mann, a master gardener and DIY extraordinaire, suggested I create a fairy garden using the vintage container from my childhood.  A quick trip to the craft store provided everything I needed to create this magical little garden.

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Miniature succulents were the perfect choice for the terrarium.

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Place the miniature garden implements as desired.

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Multicolored crushed mosaic tiles creates perfect magical walkways.

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I added a miniature bridge to the garden as well.

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Create your own timeless enchanted miniature fairy garden, and enjoy its whimsical magic..

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Tips for maintaining a terrarium:

1.  Terrariums need diffused light and thrive in low light areas.

2.  Avoid overwatering.  Mist with a spray bottle of water as needed. Light watering once a week is generally sufficient.

3.  Rotate the container every few days.

4.  Avoid overcrowding the plants so as to leave room for them to grow.

Use your imagination to create a tabletop terrarium that your family, a friend, or a  shut-in can enjoy throughout the year.  Better yet, share the joy of creating an unforgettable gardening memory with a child..

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