2016: A Look Back in the Garden

It’s hard to believe this is the last day of 2016. What a year! Here’s hoping we have a more peaceful, content 2017.


My bayberry candles are lit and I’m ready for a happy 2017!

I want to thank all of my readers for sticking with me through this year. I have been trying to change things up, but at the same time, I didn’t post as much as years before. This is something I am going to actively improve in the new year. Posting more, even if it’s something small, and it doesn’t have to be as uniform as I have been trying to make them in the past.

Now, back to the garden…

This was the first year my husband and I experimented with tomatoes! We had a great crop! We also had a few small pumpkins and gourds from the seeds of our Halloween pumpkins the year before! We have since expanded this bed and I plan to start shopping for more veggies to plant this year!


This past year was the first time I really enjoyed Spring. I loved all the cherry and apple blossoms on the trees, and I planted more unique bulbs that truly made me happy.


This hair allium was the showstopper of my back of the garage flower bed. I was so happy they came up!

I also took a big interest in window boxes. For those of you who can actually have window boxes, please try having one. I love how they make your house look so homey and quaint!

front window box

Another highlight– seed collecting. I had never taken the time to do this before. It was actually very enjoyable, and I found a new appreciation for the beauty and uniqueness of seed pods. They are all different– some you wouldn’t even think were seeds!


This is a Giant Hibiscus seed pod. I think it’s beautiful, and gave these away as Christmas presents!

So? What on the schedule for 2017? I am tackling projects I have wanted to get started on for the past few years, but something else always took priority.

Here’s what’s on my list for 2017, and you can hold me to it! 

  • Pergola project –I am going to make sure my pergola project gets under way. I have been dreaming of one of these for about 3 years now, but we have always had to set it aside for something else. Sometimes you just have to make it happen!
  • Window boxes— I am going to add a few more window boxes to my little house. I really LOVE how they add so much character. My dream would be to have one at every window, but I have to get approval from the hubs, first!
  • The Veggie Garden— we are expanding! If you follow my instagram account, I posted a picture of how I extended the bed on the side of the garage to accommodate more veggies– my hubby wants it bigger, so we will be expanding the bed even more, which means more veggies in the garden!!
  • Garden Appreciation — I am going to start touring more and spotlighting more great gardens this year. So many people have so many great gardens, I think their designs should be shared!

I want to wish everyone a great 2017– enjoy every moment and be happy with everything you have. You wouldn’t believe how much more beautiful life will be!





Thinking Outside of the Window Box

Good Morning!

It will be a short and sweet post today, as I will be heading out of town for the weekend. It’s going to be a beautiful, sunny weekend for us, though I wish we would get some more rain. Western New York is “abnormally dry”. Our lawn is brown!

And because we have had so little rain, we need to water everything– most importantly, container plants– window boxes. ( That was a pretty good segue, I think!)

Of course, this leads me into the subject of the post– window boxes. For the first time, I received Proven Winners gardeners idea book for some ideas on how to change things up in my window boxes.

pw pic

I was not let down– I pretty much wanted to copy two different window box ideas in the book, but couldn’t find some of the flowers– they were sold out!

So, I improvised. And it was great anyway!

*Do not be afraid to try different combinations of plants for your window boxes.*

We are so used to going to our local nursery and getting the same things — geraniums, marigolds, creeping jenny, spikes (don’t worry, I purchased the last two anyway because I love them). And if you like those plants, there is no need to change them! We as gardeners tend not to look beyond the same, familiar flowers just by habit. We don’t look past the “norm” and see all the great, different plants you can put in your window boxes!

That’s why I love this idea book from Proven Winners. It gave me insight on plants I would never think of putting in a window box.


My window boxes for the front of my house contain:

L to R: Coleus (Alligator Tears), Chenile (the red fuzzy plant), Sweet potato vine (yellow leaves) and capped off with another Coleus.

The red fuzzy plant called Chenile I actually saw at the Farmer’s Market in a basket. I was browsing the nursery a month later and found them in packs. I just HAD to add that. So different!

I have discovered the great shade/part sun annual Coleus this year. There are so many varieties at your local nursery. I recommend them to anyone with lots of shady spots in your landscape!

The window box I have on my daughter’s swing set contains:



Bottom to Top: Coleus (Kong Red); Sweet Alyssum ( tiny purple flowers); Black Sweet Potato Vine. I have each of these plants in this particular box as every other. 

So please, take a look at some different flowers for your window boxes if you haven’t already done so. It’s amazing the beautiful combinations you can make it look beyond your typical flowers!