My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

2014 Sheridan Annual Garden Tour, Part 1

As I've mentioned in a couple of previous posts, we went on Sheridan's 2nd Annual Garden Tour on July 19th. (We went to last year's also, in which our friends Al and Jackie's garden participated, but I didn't take my camera. This time I didn't make that blunder!

This year there were eight gardens (we made it to seven) competing in two categories: "Amazing" Estate Garden and "Amazing" Backyard Garden. It was a very bright sunny day, which made it difficult to get good photos, so I mostly concentrated on capturing the whimsy and beauty in the details, rather than taking sweeping panoramics of the properties ~ some of which were too huge to capture in a single photo anyway! I'll share them in four posts as time allows… so let's get started!

This garden, in the Backyard Garden category, belongs to a woman named Lauri, and is a certified Backyard Wildlife Habitat. It was an instant favorite and so gets this post all to itself because I took a lot of photos of it! :-) Lauri's backyard is fairly narrow but deep, and filled with treasures both hidden and not. She has a veggie garden and most of her plantings are from seed. She did all ofd the design and installation herself, and we loved its feeling of barely-controlled wildness and its mix of shady woods and open spaces. But mostly I loved all the whimsical touches! 

You know I had to get a closeup of that adorable birdie-hippie VW bus...

And this fun tent birdhouse! Look at all the great details. The birds in Lauri's back yard must be happy campers indeed!...

Lauri and I share (almost) the same first name and a love of birdhouses…

Anyone know what flower this is? (Thanks to Jackie for informing me it's a fancy clematis!) I thought they were really pretty…

She had a couple of gorgeous clematis plants (one a bit smaller than this gorgeous specimen was taking over part of the garage building)...

I loved the backdrop the neighbor's trees provided at the rear of Lauri's property, especially for this fun sunflower, which made me think of a sailor on watch in a ship's crow's nest...

2014 Sheridan Annual Garden Tour, Part 2
2014 Sheridan Annual Garden Tour, Part 3
2014 Sheridan Annual Garden Tour, Part 4

Thought while I'm at it, I'd share a few recent photos from our modest little front flower bed. It may be small, but it's been blooming like a big boy! 

The zinnias came from my friend Rose, who sent us a seed packet of them and one of snapdragons when we first moved to town. I didn't plant them at rental #1 because it was fall/winter, nor at rental #2 because we were building this place by then and I wanted to save them for our house. But in all the hubbub, I forgot about them till this summer! We planted them without high hopes, and though the snapdragon seeds didn't do anything, the zinnias have been amazing! I kept having to thin and transplant them, it seemed that every seed germinated. They just started to bloom this month…

I love the little yellow "stars" around the center of the pink one, which had vanished just a few days later when I took this closeup...

Good thing I got these photos when I did, because we had horrid winds over the weekend that frequently gusted to 50mph over the course of 24 hours, and by the time they moved on to ruin someone else's day they'd bent, broken, desiccated and denuded most of our zinnias. :-( Fortunately, quite a few were still safely tucked away in their buds, biding their time, and should be showing up any day now!

After my dental and haircut appointments tomorrow morning, we're off on our maiden voyage camping trip with the dogs and Girasole, spending the night at a state park campground about 20 miles away. It's been a really crazy week, but we purchased some more camper/camping gear and made some modifications to Girasole (like adding bed rails and slats; the "sleeping on a table top" concept just wasn't going to work for us) that should make things easier/safer/nicer, yet we still don't feel prepared. But the weather's supposed to be ideal, it's just one night, and not that far from home - what could possibly go wrong? ;-) We're not sure if we'll get another chance to "rehearse" before we all head up to Havre in mid-September for a much longer outing, but hope that tomorrow's experience will provide a good shakedown. Just not one that's too shaky!

Anyway, if I owe you an email (and it's probable that I do!), please bear with me - we didn't know BW's retirement would be so hectic! Our own fault for buying the camper. We thought you just buy one, toss in some food, clothes, and toiletries, hook it to your vehicle and you're off on adventures! We were SO naïve. Here's Girasole in her new home, undergoing a storage modification… can you spy BW? :-)


  1. Love the garden tour and the whimsies. Too many quirky additions are never enough.
    Your garden is looking wonderful too.
    Enjoy your camp out.

    1. I love the quirk & whimsy (hey, that would be a great name for a pub!) :-) Thanks for the compliment on our modest little patch o'flowers (the daisies have returned! Can't believe one of the plants has put out new blossoms!) and our camping trip was fun. Topic of next post. :-)

  2. Cool garden tour! I love zinnias, too! Happy trails with your first camping trip tomorrow ;-).

    1. Thanks! I know, zinnia are so colorful and old-fashioned. They always make me think of grandmotherly cottages with pie cooling on the windowsill and a front porch swing. :-)

  3. You got some good pictures, that was a nice garden. The purple flower is also a clematis. Have fun on your maiden voyage.

    1. Thanks, I had trouble with the bright overhead light, so I was glad her garden offered some shade! Thank you for edifying me on the clematis, it's a fancy one!

  4. What a fun garden Lauri has (and such a great name to boot)! I adore the VW bus and tent birdhouse. So, so cute! I can just imagine the birds and wildlife she gets in her yard with that wonderful habitat.

    Clematis are always so pretty to me. We see them around here quite a bit. I should plant some to grow on our fence... That's very cool that the zinnias bloomed despite being older seeds! They're so bright and cheerful, too. Damn that nasty wind for breaking them, but that's great that there are more to bloom soon.

    I think you'll get a really good idea of how a longer trip will be when you spend the night at the state park. That really helped us to fine tune things so that our second time around we felt quite prepared. I hope you have a lot of fun and that the weather cooperates!

    1. She definitely has it designed with birds in mind, I think if I were a bird I'd have a hard time coming up with a reason to leave! :-) Clematis on your fence would be lovely! I love the climbing flowered vines. The zinnia have resumed their upright and locked positions (lol), and there are a few new flowers to replace the ones that the wind blasted. Fun to see all the different colors appearing! Each one has a different looking petal arrangement, too! It's quite an assortment.

      I have all my photos up for the camping trip post, just have to write it. Haven't been in the mood today, maybe my muse will show up tomorrow morning.

  5. Hi! Laloofah. Nice backyard garden trip. The purple flower is brathtakingly beautiful. I hope you will enjoy your maiden voyage camping tour. Thanks for sharing. Wishing you a wonderful weekend.

    1. Thanks, Minoru, I look forward to posting the other gardens we toured (I think you will enjoy them - especially the estate gardens - also!), as well as our camping adventure. We enjoyed it - I didn't think there would be much worth photographing (it's such a small park and campground), but I surprised myself! :-)

  6. I felt that I just couldn't enjoy Part 3 of the garden post if I didn't go back and look at parts 1 and 2 even though part 3 was handy. My delayed gratification was rewarded with this very full and fun post.

    I really loved all the fun birdhouses with the VW bus as my favorite so I'm really happy you gave us a close up. I love the little driver with his head out the window!!

    My favorite flower photo was the fancy clematis so thank you to Jackie for letting us know what it was.

    I CAN"T believe (though I know you're honest so I guess I do believe) that you got those gorgeous zinnias from seed. How remarkable. I doubt I'd have even tried so good for you for taking the chance - that paid off well!!

    I had to make the photo ALOT bigger before I could spot BW in your newly arranged garage. In the smaller photo I thought his bike had blue saddlebags!! :-)

    Thanks for the enjoyable lunch break!!


Will Blog For Comments. :-)

Thanks for taking the time to leave yours!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...



  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"

free counters