Monday, January 24, 2011

Make a Garden Plan online that you can PRINT and SAVE!!

I got tired of my print shop, it's just NOT conducive to making garden plans...so I went in search of FREE programs to work with.  First, I found Better Homes and Gardens' FREE garden planning program, complete with structures, plants, paths, trellises and such that you can click on and add to your garden.  The only problem I had was that it doesn't work for larger gardens (my current garden is 21'X21'), but it is PERfect for patio gardens, small planter gardens, or if you're just wanting to plan a patio area.


Houseplanz.com lists several types of software that you can order for FREE, you just pay shipping and handling.  That's great if you're someone who's not quite ready to start planning yet, but will be in a month or so, by the time you get it in the mail....but I want something NOW!  So they had a FREE TRIAL download version of a CAD program called Smart Draw VP (you'll find that download button at the top of their list of FREE programs on their link.  I've just downloaded this program and am excited to try it out!! I'll let you guys know what my 'review' of it is and if it is indeed the type of program that I'm looking for.  It's a 7 DAY program, so if I like it, I will get it (depending on the price, that is, lol)...this program ended up NOT being for me.  It was detailed, but not enough for me, and frankly, it wasn't easy for me manipulate...I just wasn't gettin' it.  So, I continue to search for THE pefect CAD program for me for this...ughhhh!

Download.com has one that's a 15 day trial, with watermarks on all printouts.  Frankly, I want one that's there, to keep, on my 'puter, that I can go and update each season as I add, remove, change things in my garden.  So now, I'm in search for one that's a free download w/no trial removal dates...IF that's possible, but hey, it's internet land, there's BOUND to be one out there, right?

OK, I found a page that has SEVERAL types of FREE garden design programs listed, including 3D!  it's DIY Home Design Software.  The list w/links is toward the bottom.  ughhhh, but alas, I don't like any of them...still on the prowl.
It's important to note that, as you can tell from my above commentary on the subect, not every program will work for you and your plans.  Someone with a smaller garden may find that Better Homes and Gardens' version is perfect for them.  But others, like myself, my need a program that's more detailed, and will allow me to expand upon my garden, that will allow for the garden to be larger, etc.






Sunday, January 23, 2011

A plan for a stone paver patio by the garden...

Last year, we had a neighbor that (not the hateful one, lol) decided to move out of state, they're since going to move back, but prior to leaving, they gave me their iron and glass top patio table.  These are so nice to have, to sit out with a glass of lemonade or wine and just enjoy the outdoors.  We already have one of the tall glass top bar height tables on the back deck, so it got me thinking.  Right now, we have it sitting at the side of the house.  I think there's a new plan a-brewing in my head.  It will require some leveling of some grassy land (not much), putting a hedge-fence up in front of the compost bin (needs to be done anyway), and laying some pavers down, filling in the pace w/some sand...and viola!  a patio at the edge of the garden will be born!  right next to my rose hedge (divine!!), and YES, by bestie got me a fire pit for Christmas, so that will be the PERfect spot for it!!  I'll be drawing up the new plans for it in the coming weeks and will post it for all to see...by having it in those types of plans, somehow it makes it seem like it's more likely to come to fruition, ya know what I mean? 

You can find the below photos at Houzz.com

Isn't THESE garden patios be lovely?  I could SO pull this off if I had a pergola...which I could SO pull THAT off, as well, lol

jary ralston eclectic patio



Carolyn Aiken traditional patio



If you're in the mood to check out some garden, patio, pathway, and more designs and ideas, check some out here.  Their projects are super easy to follow and understand.  Get inspired and DO something to your yard this year.  If you don't have a yard, redecorate your entry way or balcony...do SOMEthing new this year!!

See how easy it is to transform a simple balcony?  Do it the thrifty way and start shopping now at thrift stores and Goodwills and such, you could SO do it on the cheap.  Plus, do it with stuff you already have!


Diguiseppe Architecture traditional patio



Balcony small Chelsea Apartment eclectic patio


What about your screened-in porch, patio, carport, etc.?  If you don't have a patio, but one of those instead, try something new with that, as well.


2006 showcase traditional patio


the KEY is to make the space YOURs...because that's what it is!!


Portland Landscaping Outdoor Living traditional patio


and then don't forget about YOUR garden!!!
We have a hillside in our far backyard that is ALways wet and soggy in the summer...it makes it very difficult for the hubs to maneuver his yard tractor.  The grass that gets cut comes up in huge soggy clumps...so I had the bright idea a few years ago of a dry (not-so-much) creek bed to run down the hill.  We've yet to do it, but the pic below would be wonderful to have.


Exteriorscapes traditional landscape



Garden eclectic exterior


LOOOK at this WONderful veggie and herb garden!! it's BEAUtiful!!!

Portland Landscaping Outdoor Living contemporary landscape


No yard?  no optimal growing conditions?  no time to take care of a garden?  whatever the reason, how about trying a ROCK garden!

Rock garden  landscape


(can you tell I'm totally addicted to Houzz.com's photo galleries, lol)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

So, it's January...if you're a gardener, then you know what THAT means!

(2010's garden plan)

Time for seed catalogs!  They've been coming in, along with Herb catalogs...my FAVE!  It also means time to start planning my garden.  I've been 'promised' 4 new raised beds this year with the fence to be expanded around it...we'll see if this so-called 'promise' actually takes place or if it was just a pseudo promise, lol...it took me 4 years to get this garden built, lol it's liable to take 4 more years to get it added on to.  But anyhoo, lots of work to do for the garden:
  • get rid of the grass in the walkways,
  • carpet roll the walkways and put woodchips on it (tired of having to beg to get it mowed! ugh!)
  • build the lattice tee pees for the mator plants
  • decide where to plant what for the rotation
  • get basil seeds sowed in cups (and remember to tend to them, lol)
The peppers didn't do well this year.  I planted them at the end of the tomato bed...between the tomatoes, of course, I planted my basil.  ya'll, this is THE best fix for no bugs in your garden...BASIL!  ANY kind of basil.  I had NO bugs, literally NO bugs, NO fugly lil worms, no yucky crawly things (other than bunnies), in my garden beds at all this year and I praise the BASIL for that!  So, no more pepper plants in the mator beds.  We grew melons, but they weren't all that tasty, so I dunno if I'll do any this year.  The cucumbers were glorious.  I used upturned tomato cages for them to climb that really helped alot by keeping them off the ground....they'd grow up, then drape down over the top fo the cage, and THEN it would spread across the ground, so it kept most of the cuke plant off the ground and out fo the walkways.  I need to start working on my garden chart to get all this figured out.

Friday, January 7, 2011

A NEW year...a NEW beginning...or is it?

You know what the bad thing about New Year's Resolutions is????  it's something you're suppose to commit to, supposedly by your mind, body, and soul.  Who can do this?  it's a very difficult thing to do.  I try not to do it...I avoid these types of commitments, because I always tend to disappoint those commitments, lol. 

Christmas was a whirlwind...very very busy, and almost NONE of it was for numero-uno!  I think I'm just going to stop cold turkey...conforming, that is.  Conforming is not always the best solution, ya know.  I want my cats to commit to using a new litter box, in a new location, with a new type of litter, that will inevitably turn into then conforming to use the TOILET instead of a litter box, lol...oh, it WILL happen.  I'm tired of conforming to the cat's whims that include scooping and flushing and sweeping up THEIR messes...it's time that THEY conform to MY standards.  Standards...it's a very broad term, don't ya think?  I mean...each person has their own standards.  Each living thing, including plants, have their own standards.  I had a tomato plant that was to produce yellow fruit this year...I planted it along with all the other types of tomatos I'd gotten...that plant refused to conform...it did NOT bear any fruit.  Conformists...highly over rated at times...extremely under rated, as well.  I want to be one of those that stays in the middle...I don't mind being 'on the fence' on most things...there's nothing wrong with that usually.  I'm not a Democrat...I'm actually not even a Republican...I'm 'on the fence' on most issues that regard politics, but I know which side I'm on when it comes to life issues.

ok, enough for my soap box...I have issues, lol....

wanna see some decor pics of my home this season???? here's a few:



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