From My Carolina Home

Quilting, cooking, reading books, gardening, crafting, sewing, photography and more


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Car Club Weekend Fun and Gardens

It was one of those weekends where everything went just right.  We had two car club events scheduled for Friday night and Saturday morning, but the remnants of a tropical storm threatened to scuttle our plans.  On Friday nights all summer long, our small town does free band concerts called Music on Main.  People bring their interesting cars to park on the road, paying a $5 fee to be in the show which goes to charity.  We always have a fun time, and go as often as we can. We had a discussion as to whether or not our new car would be welcome, but the Classic Car Club members in charge of the show said yes, they’d love to have us park on the street with the newer models.  Our white two-seat convertible Fiat Spider is still a bit rare in this part of the country.  The car next to us is a replica kit car.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

We parked and walked just a block off Main street to a new restaurant called Olive or Twist on the corner of Barnwell and Church. If you are local, or you come up to visit, have a meal here. The food is really good, and they specialize in small appetizer plates, and specialty martinis. I like having a meal like that, shared with friends, ordering a bunch of appetizers and grazing off all the choices. The four of us at the table had shrimp cocktail, spinach artichoke dip with chips, smoked trout, baja fish tacos, fried oysters and a tuna-tini.  This was the second time I have eaten here and the food was consistently good.  In the evening, they have a light jazz group playing live music and we enjoyed that before the main concert on the center stage began downtown.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

The band was Special Edition, playing lots of oldies from mostly the 1970s and 80s.  This is a permanent stage set up to do concerts and events in the summer and fall.  It is downtown next to the Visitors Center.  I’ve done posts on this summer music series with car shows before, and you can see more on Summer Fun and Friday Night in a Small Town.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Further down, the rest of our British contingent were mostly parked together.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Lots of other old cars were there too, I won’t show you all the pictures I took, LOL, but they will be on our BCCWNC.org website in a couple of days. I need to collect the rest of the pictures the guys took.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

The rain stayed west until after the concert was over and we were home.  Whew, dodged the first downpour, now for Saturday’s event.  We were a bit afraid that the rain would extend into the morning as it rained most of the night, but we got up to mostly clear skies.  Meeting up with a bunch more club members in a parking lot in Fletcher, we were in for a wonderful drive. We set out on Mills Gap Road heading up to Hooper’s Creek.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Through lovely green areas with trees and lots of fresh grass, fragrant from the overnight rain.  The clouds were building, but we hoped for the best.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Out in West Henderson county, we stopped for a brief photo-op of these huge cow statues. If you are local and want to see them, they are on Old Clear Creek Road.  We were told that the Paul Bunyon statue is nearby, but we didn’t look for it.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

We wound around the apple orchards, with the trees heavy with ripening fruit. We still have about 8 weeks to go to get fresh apples. With the abundant rain and sunshine, it should be a good harvest.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

More of our beautiful roads, our route took almost an hour.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Our destination was Troyer’s Amish Farm.  I posted about this wonderful place last year, showing a lot more of the farm and the country store.  Click Here to see more. Members parked on the green, and had our lunch in their new pavilion behind the cars.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

They have added to the gardens as well.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

After lunch, we caravan drove over to a members home, like we do every year, to see Mary Alice’s gardens and have dessert. Her home was on the Garden Tour from Asheville this year, and they estimate that they had about 1000 people visit their garden over the course of the event. You can see why, her gardens are just wonderful, full of flowers and veggies!  That is her greenhouse next to their home at the top of the hill.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

I’ve shown her gardens before too, click on Mary Alice’s Garden to see more of her gorgeous flowers, along with the treehouse and some of the other features of their home.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

She has a new ‘she-shed’ for potting and doing the artistic things she does. It is all reclaimed wood, and recycled windows.  Built by husband, Terry, it is a true marvel, right next to the vegetable patch.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Inside is rustic, and the creek can be heard babbling just outside the shed. I love the old glass.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Inside her home on her table, she has a chrysalis house. She has found a number of monarch chrysalis on her plants, and brought them inside to protect them until the butterflies emerge. As usual, she had the perfect thing to keep them, a little metal house with glass panels to use as an incubator.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

Thankfully, the rain held off until the club members had toured the gardens and eaten most of the three cakes offered for dessert. We sprinted for the car as the rain came on, thankful that we made it through both events before it let loose.

Fun with the Car Club at From My Carolina Home

What did you do this weekend?


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Early June In the Garden

The garden continues to grow and evolve, watching for the first tomatoes and hoping for a good crop of basil.  The garden is busy and blooming so get ready for a picture heavy post!  Out in the forest, the honeysuckle is going like crazy.

Late May in the Garden 3

The sweet fragrance wafts across the air, and the pollinators are all over these blooms.

Late May in the Garden 14

Mountain Laurel is blooming across the property.  Ours are all white, no pink ones.

Late May in the Garden 4

The peach trees have a good amount of fruit. These are wild clingstone peaches, not a lot of usable fruit, but a really sweet and intensely peach flavor.  If DH is lucky enough, I’ll get the peaches before the bears do and make him a Fresh Peach Coffee Cake.  The problem is I have to leave them on the trees until they ripen or they don’t get ripe.  So, the bears and I have a race each year to get to them at the perfect moment.

Late May in the Garden 17 peaches

This red and white petunia sneaked into my basket of bargain white petunias, so I put it with the white lobelia. Both are doing nicely on the veranda.

Late May in the Garden 18

The yellow torenias are growing and beginning to bloom more profusely.

Late May in the Garden 30

Whoopee, I actually have a nice lettuce plant! This will be a salad soon.

Late May in the Garden 22

The red snapdragons are starting another show.

Late May in the Garden 24

The celosias are still little, but blooming well.

Late May in the Garden 25

The day lilies are getting going, this one with dewdrops in the early morning.

Late May in the Garden 26

My favorite pale yellow one with the deep purple throat is blooming profusely.  It is too bad that these gorgeous blooms only last one day.  I like the ruffled edges of this one.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

More ruffled edges on the peachy color ones with yellow throats, there are two clumps of these both putting on daily shows.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

My largest tomato plant has a flower! Hoping for a nice fat tomato.

Late May in the Garden 27

The tomatoes planted in a large pot are getting bigger too.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Out in the front flower bed, the white petunias are growing and filling the pots, flowering nicely.

Late May in the Garden 28

The larger pot on the corner of the veranda is filling in too. The daisy finished blooming and I deadheaded the blooms hoping it will go again. I like this pink coleus a lot, it adds nice color to the pot.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another planting of basil in a small pot is coming along.

Late May in the Garden 34

Inside, a friend convinced me to try growing another lettuce from the core of one used for dinner. So I did. I thought using a bulb vase would be perfect to keep it just in the water. I cut a thin slice off the bottom and put it in water.

Lettuce rooting

About a week later, it seemed to be doing really well. No roots yet, but I was hopeful as the leaves were growing.

Lettuce in bulb grower

Then, for some reason it died and turned brown. I don’t have a clue why. Another epic fail, LOL!! Also on the failure front, the poinsettia in the large pot on the veranda died too. I guess it didn’t like being replanted, or something was wrong with the light or water. But the blue lobelia and the peachy pink begonia still are growing and blooming nicely.

Lobelia May

The vibrant colors are just beautiful.

Peach begonia with lobelia

Basil and more begonias, both doing well.

White and pink begonias

The fuschia put on a spectacular show!  The two color flowers are so interesting.

Fuschia 1

Last week I made DH a couple of loaves of Apple Bread, and put the peels and cores out in a dish for the critters. It didn’t take long for the crows to find it and steal an apple core.  The others tried to take it away from him, instead of getting their own from the dish.  Later, I noticed it was all gone, so I think they came back and had a feast.

Crow with apple2

The goldfinches are wearing their summer colors, so bright and beautiful.

Goldfinch

All the torenias are blooming and they are beginning to cascade trailing shoots of leaves and flowers. They are growing larger and faster than previous years, and I think the bone meal and slow release fertilizer I added to the hanging baskets made a difference.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lovely cool mornings and evenings are nice to sit in the rockers and enjoy a hot cup of coffee or a nice evening libation.  The pillow is from my internet buddy Jenna’s site The Painted Apron.   She is such a wonderful artist!  I plan to get another bright pillow soon for the other chair.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I love seeing the pollinators come by, this pretty butterfly rested on the veranda, moving its wings back and forth slowly.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The June blooming lily has one bloom again this year. I wish it would do two like it has in the past, so I’ll give it some fertilizer and bone meal to help it along.  Not bad for a bulb that was a gift several years ago, and has bloomed every year since.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I deadheaded the hydrangea, and it is starting to bloom with lovely shades of pink to lavendar to blue, all on the same bush and sometimes on the same flower.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, much is blooming and more to come.  My one little squash plant has a big flower, and I hope for more.  The hostas are filled in and fully leafed out, and should have the tall spires of purple blooms soon.  More day lilies will come into bloom too.  I still plan to move some things around, and will get to that soon.

What’s going on in your garden?

 

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Garden Jubilee 2017

Memorial Day weekend is the annual Garden Jubilee in Hendersonville, the largest annual plant show and sale in the western North Carolina area.  We go most years, and this year I was on the hunt for more perennials, and I really want a clematis for the lattice in the front garden bed. Local nurseries and garden centers bring their best and the displays are a delight for the eyes.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

We came up at the middle of Main Street, looking north you can see lots of plant vendor tents along with arts and crafts vendors. The crowds were substantial as the weather was wonderful, but it wasn’t hard to move around and see all the flowers, veggies, and herbs on offer. We were there in the morning before it got too hot. The large trees are permanent plantings, along with flower beds here and there. Note the wonderful architecture on the buildings peeking over the trees.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

Looking south from the same intersection, lots more vendors, people, and gorgeous plants for sale, with a distant view of a mountain. Hendersonville sits in a valley between two ranges. There were eight blocks of Main Street blocked off for foot traffic only, vendors along the street on both sides and lots of things to see.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

Lots of people were purchasing rolling carts, and filling them up.  I liked this purple flower, but I didn’t see where it came from.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

There were several vendors with ‘yard art’, I thought about getting one of these chickens, but ultimately didn’t.  Cute though.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

Lovely selections of all kinds of flowers and colors were all along the street on both sides.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

These light purple verbenas are a nice pairing with the deep purple petunias. Every plant vendor had wonderful ideas for putting plants together in baskets and pots. Aren’t those hydrangeas gorgeous!

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

The next vendor had lovely red salvia flowers in pots.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

And one more down was showcasing pink and white.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

I came very close to buying this dalia. But the vendor was honest enough to tell me that it wouldn’t survive our winters without being dug up and stored. Not something I really want to do, I want to plant some perennials and just let them take over. But it is a beautiful flower.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

One of the craft vendors was offering barn quilts. These were so neat, some like this one were done in reclaimed wood. Others like the yellow, black and grey were made of tiles.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

I think one of these would be super over the garage door on our taller garage.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

There is a quilt trail starting in Henderson county, and I’ll try to get around to seeing some of those soon.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

The next plant vendor had a pink Mountain Laurel. I’ve lived here for years, and thought it only came in white! After I saw this one, I saw more growing wild. I just never got close enough to the wild ones to see they were Mountain Laurel.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

I was tempted by these foxgloves too, remember the ones at Brookgreen Gardens? I may try one eventually, they are biennials, reseeding every year, with new plants blooming the second year.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

I took a lot more photos of flowers, but I’ll close with this one of a huge display of hanging baskets.

Garden Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

So, what did I buy?  Only one plant, a Cherokee Purple Heirloom Tomato, and I hope grows well.  I picked up some coupons to visit local growers next week.  Being local has its advantages, I don’t have to walk around with a bunch of plants, I can get them a bit later.  What did you do over the weekend?

 

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An Iris Adventure for National Iris Day

Today is National Iris Day, and I have been saving my odyssey to revive my purple iris flowers for today. I’ll show the progression of the beds, and give you some hopefully interesting Iris lore along the way.  Did you know that the Iris is named for the Greek goddess of the Rainbow?  She is called the Messenger of the Gods, and used the rainbow to move between heaven and earth.  The flower was named the Iris because they come in every color of the rainbow.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

Last month I was lamenting how my iris bulbs would put out leaves but had not bloomed last year after I divided them in 2015.  I created two beds from one by dividing the tubers.  Their blooming had been getting more sparse each year.  But after dividing them, they refused to bloom at all last spring.  Only the untouched bed produced any blooms.  Time for some research, and I found several sites that predicted I had replanted them too deep.  I thought that couldn’t be the case, really, could it?  They weren’t planted that deep.  But one site had a Q&A section, and the answer to almost every question was ‘they are planted too deep’, and also said not to mulch them.  Well, I had mulched them so maybe the site was right.  They also desperately needed weeding.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

One fine day, I got out the kneeling pad and gloves, and reduced the level of soil over all the tubers.  The tubers need to only be barely covered, with a bit at the very base of the leaf shoot uncovered altogether.  OK, so I did that.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

I know flowers need phosphorus to bloom, so while I was at it, I added a top dressing of bone meal to the soil.  Lucky for me, it began to rain the next day, so they got a very good soaking over several days.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

I have to say, the effect was almost immediate.  In just days, the tubers began to put up flower shoots.  They did so many I was afraid all the flowers would be done while we were in Myrtle Beach for a week.  Did you know that in Japan, the Iris flower is believed to ward off evil spirits?  People will put the blooms in their bath to prevent illness.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

In a few more days, those beautiful purple buds were developing nicely.  In ancient Egypt, the flower with its three petals was the basis of their king’s sceptre signifying faith, wisdom and valor.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

Then, about 2 weeks later, the bud are showing, and more are coming!  In Victorian flower language, sending a bouquet of iris blooms meant you were sending your compliments, or feelings of friendship, faith, hope and valor. The original bed is putting up multiple blooms on some spikes.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

In France, the iris is the basis of their fleur-de-lis design, symbolizing royalty.  Also the second bed is coming along at the same rate.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

The purple iris is a symbol of royalty, respect, and wisdom.  The tubers put out even more buds while we were out of town.  I think the blooming season for them will last a couple of weeks at this rate.  When we got back, there were a few that had opened up, and even more buds developing.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

The root of the iris plant when dried is called orris root, and is used in herbal preparations and perfumes as a stabilizer.  Now, they are blooming their heads off, these in the upper planter are putting out multiple blooms per shoot.  Although I didn’t do anything to the tubers in this bed, I did give them a top dressing of bone meal for the phosphorus.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

Both the reworked beds have the darker color blooms.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

I am really happy that they have begun blooming again.  It is hard to believe the solution was so simple.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

The lighter purples of the upper planter keep going too.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

Those blooms just keep coming, going on more than a week now with more coming into flower every day.  Some of the flower spikes have five blooms on them!

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

Did you know that only the upper petals are actual petals called standards?  The lower purple parts are septals called falls containing the reproductive parts of the flowers.

National Iris Day at From My Carolina Home

The blooms just keep coming now, these are few days later. The second bed is full now, quite a contrast from nothing to this with just a little care.  I don’t cut these flowers, preferring to enjoy them where they bloom.

Irises at From My Carolina Home

The original iris bed is getting full too, with all the green foliage on the mountainside as a backdrop.  A few blooms are spent, but more buds are showing as well.  I think this will go on for several more days, maybe even a week more!

Irises at From My Carolina Home

Do you have iris flowers?  What is blooming in your garden?

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Early May in the Garden

The garden is coming alive again, finally!  It seemed like everything just turned green overnight here, but actually the trees really leafed out while we were gone for a week.  Still, the transformation from bare limbs to verdant green means spring is well and truly here. Our driveway down the mountain is glorious, and the overhanging dogwood is still in bloom.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, a trip to the garden center was in order to pick up the torenias, and a few other plants to turn the veranda into an lush, flower filled outdoor room.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Going to buy plants is so fun, and it is difficult not to just go crazy with all the colors and types of flowers.  This is Raymonds, my favorite spot to buy flowers.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I have plenty of pots to fill, some new ones from the thrift stores and some that have been on the veranda for a long time. A couple of gifts from friends of pots or plants all need to be dealt with. DH was kind enough to move my potting bench up to the upper level and set it in the shade for me.  I had to make a second trip out to the local big box hardware store’s garden center for more small seedlings and tomato plants. My bargain buy for this season is the white petunia basket on the ground. Actually I bought two of them on the clearance rack, just $3 each and they contain seven plants each! Just deadheading the spent blooms and a little water is all that was needed. White impatiens will once again occupy the table planters. They are just so perfect, and grow so well in the shade that nothing else would do as well there.  In the background, the redbud is done blooming, and the azaleas finished up while we were gone too, so I didn’t get a lot of pictures of them in full flower.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Torenias will be the hanging baskets once again as I love having the hummingbirds and butterflies.  I place coffee filters in the bottom of the pots to keep the dirt in while allowing excess water to drain.  Adding potting soil, and this year I am shaking in a sprinkle of slow-acting fertilizer and a bit of bone meal into the very bottom soil which is reused from last year.  Then fresh potting soil is added over that and the plants set into place.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Three to a basket, they are hung on the hooks on the veranda.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The veranda holds four baskets between the pillars.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I picked pink begonias this year instead of the yellow I’ve had for several years.  Good to mix things up so the veranda is a bit different each year. I put one in each of these taller planters I got at the thrift store, along with a white petunia. These will go on either side of the front door.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

New this year will be this fuschia placed in a pot on a stand to allow it to cascade down the sides.  I had one of these several years ago but I tend to forget about them.  This year they were next to the torenias at the garden center, so I got two.  This variety will have dark pink, purple and white flowers.  A little fairy has moved his bakery into the pot too.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lobelias have such a vibrant blue color and bloom profusely. This year I got one in blue and one in white. More and more I am gravitating to mixed pots of flowers with different colors together instead of single varieties. Last December, a friend gifted me with this white poinsettia, and it is still alive. So I put it in the large ceramic planter next to the door, along with the blue lobelia and a peach begonia, also a gift from another friend.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This yellow daisy was another gift from friend.  I just realized that my friends just seem to like to bring me flowers! I seem to get new ones every time I have a luncheon or dinner party. I put it in the larger planter on the corner of the veranda with a pink coleus and yet another white petunia.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This blue pot sits on a stand, and was planted with a pink begonia and a small basil plant. I wanted at least one of the basils near the door in case I need some when it is raining.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

More pots are planted, and set around the veranda.  Pink begonia int he little blue rimmed pot, and a white one with a basil plant in one of the Chinese planters.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another pot is planted with a couple of yellow celosias along with the white petunia. I haven’t had these before, so looking forward to seeing how they do.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I put the yellow torenias in the rectangular pot like last year. I like the way they cascade down the sides of the planter. Another fairy has moved his house to the veranda, I wonder what his home is like up those little stairs behind the door. The white lobelia got its own pot.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

My seedling starts were not a success, not a dismal failure, but somewhere between.  A few plants did OK, but many didn’t survive and I have no idea why.  I put them under the grow light, and watered them carefully, yet many died after putting out their first set of leaves.  The squash and tomatoes I replanted and the second ones are still alive.  Some of the lettuce looks viable still, but all the herbs need to be restarted.  All the johnny jump-ups died, and that is one of my favorite flowers.  I got some more seeds to start again.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I set them outside a week before transplanting to harden them off.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The hummingbird vine second planting is looking good. I put it next to the lattice in the front flower bed.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the front flower bed, the veggies and flower seedlings were placed in front of the perennials. I got another perennial in a deep purple called a Veronica ‘Inspire Blue’. It is supposed to bloom all summer, so the butterflies should be happy. It has the potential to get 2 feet tall! I put the lattice back out again, and added white bargain petunias to the clay pots that hold it up.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The snapdragons were supposed to be annuals, but our winter was so mild that they survived. We are Zone 7 and they aren’t supposed to be considered perennials until Zone 9, but who knows!! I am enjoying their beautiful blooms this year too. I got them for just 25 cents a plant last year on the clearance table at the hardware store’s garden center. Great buy!

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I am impressed with how well the dianthus is doing too.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Believe it or not, I still have empty pots.  So, those will get seeds planted for more herbs.  I’ll let you know how it goes in a couple of weeks.

One more thing to show you, as I looked out on the veranda a few days ago, I saw our resident woodchuck on the veranda eating one of my plants!! Opening the sliding glass door sent him running to the other end of the veranda. He went behind my largest pot and stuck his head out. Of course I grabbed the camera then, the good one with the nice zoom lens.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

DH tried to get him to run off, but instead he went behind the grill to the right of the table in this picture, and climbed up onto the shelf under the cover. After DH wiggled the grill while trying to stand well away, the woodchuck circled back around the large pot and made a bee line for the steps.

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Then ran off, jumped off the retaining wall and kept going across the meadow and into the woods. By then he was going at top speed! I could only get one picture as he bolted away.  Little toot, he better stay out of my lettuce!

May in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I have another garden post for tomorrow, a special one for a special day.  Then I have quilting to show, a new recipe, more tablescapes, and the mystery quilt continues soon.  Lots to come, not enough days in the week!

Have you planted in your garden yet?  Any critters visiting?


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Thrifting, and Winning, and a Gift

While I was playing in Myrtle Beach and along the Grand Strand, I was able to indulge my bargain hunting addiction and visit a bunch of thrift and consignment stores in the area.  They actually have more than 60 listed on web searches, and I just couldn’t get to them all, but I had a great time in the ones I did visit.  I have to say the best of them was a consignment store called Finders Keepers.  Their wares were beautifully displayed, and made things very tempting.  I considered some of the lemon motif items here, like the pitcher on the left, to go with my lemon dishes, but decided to look around a bit more.  I didn’t notice those chargers until later when I saw the picture or I might have snapped them up.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Oh, I was tempted by those hurricane candle holders on the table here, but I resisted.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Then I went around another corner and found this. Isn’t it cute? It is a planter.  DH said it might just hold enough coffee for me for one morning, until he noticed the hole in the bottom, LOL!  I see a chicken inspired tablescape in the future!

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Tablescapes were in several stores, and you all know I love a pretty table. But, I didn’t want to buy any more than 6 salad plates, not another whole set of dishes.  These didn’t tempt me, but the table was nicely done.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Poking around is the most fun!  The chicken on the table here was tempting too, but my tiny kitchen doesn’t have the room for one on the counter as I would have liked.  I am afraid it would get broken sitting on the pie safe.  So, my French inspired kitchen will have to remain chicken-less for now.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

At the Homespun Crafters Mall, which also has vintage items, I found these wine glasses. They are heavy lead crystal with gold rims – $3.50 for both!

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Back at home, I scored several great buys at our local thrift stores, including this wonderful French inspired pail.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Little mason jar salt and pepper shakers will hold some of my specialty salts. See my post Around the World in Salt.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Another planter found for the veranda.  I like the curved lines on this one.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

A few more wine glasses at 50 cents each, I needed them for an upcoming party. The twisted stems make them pretty.  I would rather spend this little bit and donate them back when I’m done than use plastic ones.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

I just had to pick up these onion bowls, made for dipping sauces but I don’t know yet how I will use them. You’ll see them on a tablescape soon.  They are a great size for a side dish like a juicy salad or baked beans.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

A nice brass planter will give the veranda a bit more interest. I am busy planting the pots now and will show you the veranda soon.

April Thrifty shopping at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Then, I got really lucky! I was the winner of a gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop on My Quilt Infatuation, thanks so much Kelly!! Here’s the loot I got with it. I am excited to try these Cake Mix papers.  And I have to say already the new Splash Olfa cutter is so much more comfortable than the old style, straight yellow handle one.  It cuts like a dream, of course a brand new blade helps.  The ruler has a rough bottom along the edge so it hold the fabric much better than my old one.

Winner FQS!

And then I won the drawing for Thimbleberries newest book on Quilt Shop Gal‘s blog, thanks Darlene!!  I don’t consider myself a lucky person for drawings, but my luck certainly changed that week!

Book win

Then, a lovely reader named Katie contacted me about my stamping habit. She said she had some things she wanted to give me as she wasn’t stamping anymore. Little did I know what she meant. She said three boxes, and I envisioned the little milk crate boxes that I use for transporting things. Oh no, she meant big boxes stuffed with goodies!! She was coming through the week I was in Myrtle Beach, so we didn’t get to meet, but a friend met her to get the boxes for me. I was blown away when I picked up the bonanza.  Papers, stamps, punches, stickers, and more elements to add on cards or pages, so much I was speechless.

Stamping Gift 2

All of these are filled with printed specialty papers, beautiful designs all wonderfully organized by style.  They are the large 18-inch square scrapbooking size papers.  Gorgeous designs, hundreds of pages.

Stamping Gift 4

This is an album full of acrylic stamps, each of these ‘pages’ is loaded with stamps and there are seven pages! There are literally hundreds of stamps in here, with several sets of alphabet stamps in different font styles.

Stamping Gift 3

And then, there was a full crate of papers!  Some of those are Stampin’ UP colors which will match my ink pads, and the size is 18-inch square scrapbooking size papers.  Incredible.

Stamping Gift 1

Now I have card making supplies to last for my lifetime and then some!  I’ll be sharing this bounty with some of my card-making buddies, and elsewhere.  I can see making some cards for charity use, as my stamping buddy Gail does.  She does a little basket of cards for our car club’s silent auction each year.  Perhaps some doggie inspired cards would do well at the humane society’s auctions.  Now I just need to get some envelopes to complete the sets and get stamping!!

Oh, and one more thing, I have reduced the prices on all my pincushions for Mother’s Day purchases, so now is the time to order the one you’ve had your eye on.  Click on Craftnut’s Studio Etsy Store to see them.  Buy before May 4th to get delivery in time.

Have you had any good finds, lucky wins or great gifts lately?

See more of my Myrtle Beach adventures!

See these links for more about my Myrtle Beach adventure –

Beaches and Gardens of Myrtle Beach

Quilting Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach Foodie!

Visiting Brookgreen Gardens

 

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A Visit to Brookgreen Gardens

During my week in Myrtle Beach, I had to visit the Brookgreen Gardens in Murrells Inlet. The gardens had their foxgloves and snapdragons at peak bloom, just gorgeous!  I should probably have split this into two posts, but I have a lot more to show you in the coming days, and more projects in the works, so bear with me for a longer than normal post with some gorgeous flowers and scenic vistas.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

I was surprised to learn that the gardens were originally four rice plantations. Purchased when the plantations were going bankrupt by a sculptor, it was turned into a showplace for American sculptors and artists.  Currently there are more than 1400 sculptures by 350 artists in the collection.  I walked for almost three hours, and only saw a fraction of what was on display.  I took over 100 pictures, and cutting that group down to a manageable level to show wasn’t easy.   Still, get ready for a picture heavy post!!  There are several large reflecting pools and small fountain pools, all surrounded by foxgloves and snapdragons, standing three to four feet tall!

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

The four running men in the picture above represent the four Muses of Fine Arts, the poet, the painter, the musician and the architect.  The sculptures were produced in 1949 to 1954 by Carl Milles.  The range of colors in the flowers was just gorgeous.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Here, pink and yellow snapdragons are share the space with white and pink foxgloves.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

More are around a round reflecting pool, with more against the wall.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

This was on the other side, just stunning!

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Another fountain, with more foxgloves. There were literally thousands of them.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Passing through the peacocks at this gate led to more gardens.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Another reflecting pool with a different sculpture, this one of Samson and the Lion.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Further in, going through a tall hedge, this sculpture pond was a hidden gem.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

More snapdragons and foxgloves.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Here and there, some darker colors were coming into bloom, blue delphiniums and dark red ones too.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Another delphinium was blooming in this garden.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

These spotted flowers have so much character. Did you know that our modern heart medication Digitalis originally came from foxgloves? Not in widespread use anymore as there are better, less risky medications now, but part of our history.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

I adore white flowers, and these snapdragons were gorgeous to me.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Then, around the next hedge was a whole garden of white foxgloves with dark red spotted throats.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Large open vistas allowed for a nice long walk and the clear cool morning was perfect for getting some exercise.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Large live oaks with typical low country moss hanging from the branches made an arbor over the path.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

On the other side of the vista, another garden of creamy snapdragons with light lavender foxgloves.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

The tall spires captivated me.  The pink foxgloves in the back were over four feet tall.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

There were other flowers in bloom there too, but the foxgloves and snapdragons were most prominent. Here, pink rhododendrons bloom in a shady spot.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Lovely large blooms, the bees were enjoying these too.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

Here and there were patches of daisies.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

And a few tulips were still blooming.

Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet, SC ~ FromMyCarolinaHome.com

A large meadow was part of the garden walk, going past an open natural pond. Can you see the eyes in the pond looking at me? It was a baby alligator. He was on the bank when I came out of the garden hedge, but slid into the water ahead of some other people. Then turned around to watch us, while he floated in the pond.

Brookgreen Gardens 97

He’s here –

Brookgreen Gardens alligator

Further on was a huge sundial sculpture.

Brookgreen Gardens 95

On the waterway, you could take a ride on a plantation boat for a tour. I didn’t have the time to do that too, maybe next time.

Brookgreen Gardens 109

On the way out, a last look at one of the inlets. A tree that had fallen during the last hurricane had been cut off, according to the guide. She pointed out the turtles that have claimed it as their daily sunning spot. So cute, lined up on the tree trunk. Can you see them?

Brookgreen Gardens 111

Whew, that was a lot of walking!  But I thoroughly enjoyed the morning.  It was growing fairly hot and humid by the time I decided I had seen enough for one trip.  The great thing about this garden is your ticket gets you unlimited access for a week.  So you can come and go as you like over several days.  I have a lot more pictures of bronze sculptures with more foxgloves and snapdragons, but I’ll stop here.

Do you like to see gardens when you go on vacation?

 

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