Pleasant Home Farm

Preserving old traditions, making new ones, and building family and community


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Planning a new flower bed: now with “junque.”

Wow! Time has sure gotten away from me. It’s been way too long since my last post. I could make all kinds of excuses: my job search, my sadness because I haven’t gotten into grad school yet, the awesome tea party birthday party we threw for our granddaughter

The set up before the party. When the girls saw it, they were just giddy.

The set up before the party. When the girls saw it, they were just giddy.

… but everyone has a life and I don’t want to bore you.

So instead, let’s move on to what’s been obsessing me lately: the planning for my new flower bed that will surround our old pump house. I confess that aside from the terraced beds in the front of the house, most of my gardening energy has been focused on veggies, much to my mom’s chagrin. (She has been trying for years to get me to pretty up the place.) My friend, Jean Smith has changed all that. She is a wonder! She gardens and blogs and has a passion for turning junk into garden art that she calls “junque”. Recently, she has begun blogging for the Detroit News Lifestyle section, too! I’m so excited for her (in case you can’t tell). Anyway, she has inspired me to look around the farm for stuff we can use to make our gardens more exciting. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

It may not look like much yet, but trust me. It's gonna be great!

It may not look like much yet, but trust me. It’s gonna be great!

The things on the left are old hay forks. They used to be used for grabbing loose hay off of wagons and pulling it up into the hay mow to be stored for the winter. These two are rusted so badly that they don’t work anymore. I’m thinking they might make good trellises for miniature roses or other small vines. I just love the architectural look of them, don’t you?

Rusty hay forks.

Rusty hay forks.

There is also an old kids’ wagon. I keep picturing it full of trailing petunias, parked in front of our huge mock orange bush.

Of course, any old galvanized container like this coal scuttle or the broken watering can or mop bucket makes a good planter, too.

Of course, any old galvanized container like this coal scuttle or the broken watering can or mop bucket makes a good planter, too.

Another exciting find is the chassis for a Victorian baby buggy. I may or may not use it with the crate that’s sitting on it in the photo:

What great cursive lines!

What great cursive lines!

But the best thing of all is this upcycled planter that Gene cobbled together for me yesterday from an old sewing machine base and a copper wash tub. I think it’s quite grand. Don’t you agree?

We will put some empty milk jugs in the bottom to help keep the weight down.

We will put some empty milk jugs in the bottom to help keep the weight down.

I can hardly wait to fill it with annuals.

I’ve been looking at garden plans, and have come to the conclusion that I need to make sure all of my in-ground plants are perennials. That will leave me plenty of time to play with planting annuals in my new “junque” planters. I can’t thank my friend Jean enough for inspiring me to look around for what I have and recycle it to make my environment more beautiful. I bet you can do the same in your garden.

Next week, I’ll share my plan for the pump house garden. See you then!