Garden Photos forum: Evey's Blissful Garden =)

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Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:39 PM CST
The whole idea with these tour threads is to have a separate thread for each home/yard that shows how it really looks every day... not just vignettes that show perfection, but practical every day living. We can all post photos as the year progresses showing how things change over that time, as projects are completed, plants start to bloom, etc.

Here's a front view from last spring as plants were just beginning to green up from the winter. By the end of the thread, I hope to have posted pictures from every season.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:43 PM CST
I'll start the tour with photos from a chillier-than-normal late November day with front flower beds still waiting to be weeded because it won't stop raining. That's about as slice of life as you can get in the South!!! Hopefully my ratty condition photos will inspire others to show how it really is so we can all feel encouraged that our homes with unplanted pots, piles of dirt bags, and half dug gardens are just fine... perfection is a goal but not really a necessity for bliss! =)

Okay, here are my unweeded flower beds out front. I had already pulled out the pentas and had Cherry Wave petunias just waiting to go in, if would ever stop raining!!!



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:44 PM CST
Bed on other side of front door...



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:45 PM CST
Front of house. Note that I still haven't put the blinds in the top window on the left (we've been here four years now!!!). They still sit in a box in that dormer, just waiting for me to be inspired to put them up!!! =P Ms. Dougie, one of our 93-year-old neighbors, lives to the left in this photo. The Lively family lives to the right. We're blessed with great neighbors!



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:46 PM CST
The secret garden is on the Lively side of the house. Here's the entrance on a rainy fall day...



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:47 PM CST
Behind the secret garden is a storage/maintenance area. It will eventually be completely hidden from the street by the trellis that sits in front of the wood pile. Here's the view of the wood pile from the maintenance area...



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:48 PM CST
And here's the rest of the storage/maintenance area. Homes in Louisiana usually don't have basements because they would quickly become swimming pools... so we don't have the same storage abilities that homes in the north do (I sure wish we did!!!). That a/c unit is rarely used, as it's just for the back two rooms of the house... and they stay cool because of the oak tree. The short storage container houses our lawn mower, edger, weedeater, etc. The tall storage shed by the pool pump houses our pool chemicals and the tall storage shed by the fence houses all the pool maintenance equipment (Dolphin, nets, etc.).



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:51 PM CST
Going up the driveway on Ms. Dougie's side of the house, you get your first view of our oak tree (otherwise known as Alvin Oak). You can also see all the plants that I've stuffed into the carport because of a hail storm coming. The car under the cover is our son's 1956 Chevy Belair. It's become a lovely focal point, don't you think?! Brad pulled it into the center of the carport one day about two years ago with the intention of changing the brake lines. He put it up on the lifts and took all the wheels and brake lines off. Unfortunately, after it was completely immobile, he realized he didn't have a clue what he was doing. So, there it sits. Argh!!!

You can also see here that we're in the process of replacing the fence. We have one side left to go (flanking Ms. Dougie's yard). It's taking a lot longer to get this process done, and we have to go in sections because of the pool. We can't just tear it all down at one time, but can only take down what we can put up again in a day.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:56 PM CST
As you turn the corner at the back of the house, you get your first view of our courtyard. Here's the view into the house. That row of windows opens into the kitchen and casual dining area. The window on the far side of that room overlooks the secret garden. When everything is in bloom, it's a beautiful place to be! In this photo, it's a great view of all the frost bags covering most of the tender plants. The Birds of Paradise are in three large pots that sit in front of the main air conditioning units (to the right in the photo).

On the back of this short brick wall is a waterfall and fish pond, with a deck going over part of the pond leading toward the 2nd back door.

Looking back at this photo, I realize how brown everything looks now compared to even last fall. We've had several weeks of extreme freezing weather (in the teens) and many of our plants just aren't built for that type of weather! I fear we have lost most of the tropicals and I'm certain that the Birds of Paradise are now gone. =*(



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 5:59 PM CST
Here's a view of the carport and a small seating area under the oak tree. You can see the waterfall and some of the decking in the front of the photo, and our pool toward the back. To the left behind the carport is a covered patio area that has a tv, table and chairs, grill, etc.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:00 PM CST
Just inside the wrought iron gate to the pool area are the sasanquas. This is the time of year for pink snow. You can see the small wrought iron cafe table and chairs as well as the wrought iron glider swing on the courtyard side of the gate underneath the sasanquas. This is probably my favorite spot in the yard to have breakfast or a coke. It's always cool and shady there.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:02 PM CST
Moving further into the yard, you can look back and see the oak overlapping the corner of the pool area. Ignore the dirty pool!!! It was cold and rainy... not the best time to go out and skim or clean the pool!!! I promise to post some better pics of the whole pool in the summer, so you can see what it normally looks like. The staghorn fern is on the wall under the oak, covered with a frost bag. It took a hard hit with our freezes, but it has ONE green frond remaining that I am now protecting as if it was my first-born child!!!



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:05 PM CST
When we replaced the back fence, we put in six taller posts so I could build birdhouses for them. Here's two of them (the rest stretch across the back). I then put chains between each of the taller posts. I'm training clematis and climbing roses across the chains so that we have a bit more privacy above all across the back of the yard. I didn't want an 8-foot fence because they look like billboards!!! Something I've noticed... in all the photos posted by people in California or up north, they have lovely fences... with top and bottom trim and often with lattice on top. Those kind of fences just don't exist down here, supposedly because of the humidity and heat. Our fences experience a lot of expansion and shrinkage during the year with changes in humidity, so they are usually just constructed as runners with simple planks... nothing architecturally attractive about them at all. That way they can expand and shrink without worry regarding shifting joints and moulding. We'd have to paint our fences regularly if we wanted to have the beautiful ones... or at least that's what all the fence companies tell us. Hubby and I talked about trying to do a pretty one for quite a while, but finally just decided to go with the norm for this area and then try to dress it up with garden art, roses, etc.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:07 PM CST
This is the covered area that I mentioned that is the rear section of our carport. The lattice to the left rolls open to the carport, so when we have football parties, we can use the entire space as a covered area for serving tables (or at least we could before that lovely Belair was parked as a permanent fixture!!!). Hubby calls this area "the sports cave" because he loves to come out here and play in the pool or grill while watching football games. With the table and the standing ice cooler (by armoire), everything is right here... snacks, football, beer, etc. I've been toying with putting a small refrigerator inside the armoire, but right now it houses grilling equipment and a rotisserie.



Thumb of 2010-02-03/BlissfulGarden-f5b36a
~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:09 PM CST
And here's another shot of the covered porch... looking in from the rose garden toward the covered area. The gravel between the raised porch area and the pool deck adds drainage, allowing water to flow from the courtyard and shade garden to the back of the yard and then through a PVC drainage system we created with the neighbors between all four houses. That way we didn't all drown each other out with ever-increasing raised beds!



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:12 PM CST
I thought this might add an interesting perspective to the tour. Here's a shot from Google Earth overhead for our house. Actually, it's got our current home and our previous home in the shot (as marked). Yep, we moved one street over so that we could have a larger home and a pool. One of the attractions for this home was also a large extra room that could be converted to a mother-in-law suite or home office. I have great plans for it!

In the Google photo, you can see our car at our previous home, as well as the heavy tree cover there (so no possibility for roses). Because the pool cover is on at our former neighbor's home, but the sweet gums and maples have already leafed out, I believe the photo was probably taken in April. I also know the photo was taken over four years ago because the pool at the corner of our current block (the one that's totally black and disgusting!!!) was filled in four years ago, but it's still a pool in the photo. You can also see that there are literally no plants in the back yard at our current home and that the pool is drained. Overall, the Google image gives you the "lay of the land"... where the pool is in relation to the house, how close the homes are to each other in our neighborhood, etc. We're pretty typical of Southern suburbia I think.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:18 PM CST
I don't have any Fall photos from the back and fourth corner of our yard, and unfortunately that is where our clematis reside... but since they are in prime form during the spring, I'm sure I'll have plenty to add this spring!

In the meantime, here are some winter photos from one of our annual snowfalls (yep, we even get snow here in South Louisiana!). Growing up, I experienced snow here maybe every two years, but now it seems to come at least once a year. Global warming???? HA!

Unfortunately, it was dark out when the snow was falling for these pics. My little point and shoot Olympus just wasn't up to the challenge while it was still dark. But I think the pics are still pretty.



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:20 PM CST
Continuing the winter tour, here are the two flower beds I started with at the beginning of this thread...



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:20 PM CST
Other side...



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa
Name: Evey Blalock
South Louisiana - Zone 8b/9a (Zone 8b)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Dog Lover Ponds Herbs Garden Art
Daylilies Irises Clematis Roses Region: Louisiana
Image
BlissfulGarden
Feb 2, 2010 6:24 PM CST
A few more angles of the front...



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~Evey =)

"Grow where you are planted." - My gpa

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