Not always Rosy…

This is what the front & back truly looks like right now! You can’t see it but there is frost on the ground today…124_thumb1137_thumb1

So it’s not all rosy here at the Fishtail Cottage! I can assure you!!! Many of you posted last week about having garden envy!!! I can be honest and tell you much of my gardening skills are no better than yours. It’s a mission of trial and error! I search magazines and stock neighborhood gardens to see what kind of plant envy I have…once I know what plant I am interested in, I research – computers do wonders with loads of information. Questions I ask – Does this plant grow in my zone?… is it invasive? Will it reseed?

Sometimes I cannot figure it out by looks alone, so I’ve been known to take a clipping from a garden when I can’t figure it out (most of the time with permission of course). I’ll take the clipping into my local nursery…preferably Molbacks to identify the plant. I’m on first name basis with some of the master gardeners there!

Many times, I purchase a garden bush/plant/tree and get into the garden. I usually will baby newer plants for the first year…making sure there is enough water, fertilizer & good compost to help it develop. But sometimes my green thumb isn’t so green.

I love to turn to gardening books and magazines & these are the three I picked up recently! I encourage you to find these too in your local grocery store & browse through the pages…the “Flea Market Gardens” is one I’ve never seen before and really enjoyed what are inside these pages!099_thumb6

Below - I’ve taken a few pictures to show you the reality of my garden! I will leave all of these till end of March to make sure there is no hope before I remove them!

Here is a Winchester Cathedral Rose that began dying for no apparent reason. In fat I have a whole row of these on a slope the ones next to it are doing just fine….but this one – not coming back this year.


This heirloom rose SOUVENIR de la MALMAISON isn’t coming back either – I moved it when I did some late summer re-arranging & it’s as black as can be!


A huge loss is this the 25 Viburnum tinus “spring bouquet”…second year I’ve planted because the first year they died back. They are supposed to be an evergreen here in the Northwest – but not here in my garden…What a disappointment & will not be making another investment in these!


Kornus Florida Dogwood (yes, I know it isn’t a good one for here) but bought it online anyway…has never ever bloomed in the front yard. Conditions are full sun & somewhat dry. So I figured I’d move the two trees into the back where there is more shade and moisture. As I was digging it up, more like tearing this one out – an entire root broke off. I planted it anyways & let’s see how it does. Was not happy where it was – so I have nothing to lose.


This poor carpet rose Pink Supreme – ummmm, not really sure what to say about it. Doesn’t look promising – assume the pot caused the roots to freeze?


Yep – this pretty variegated Hardy Evergreen Silver Sword Azalea isn’t looking like last years picture either.


Chinese Fringe Flower was supposed to be my prized purchase last year…


So I hope this helps you realize much of my garden is living by trial & error. What works gets to come back & planted by abundance!

xoxo, Tracie

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I need to pick up some garden magazines for some ideas. I'd like to plan a bed along the back fence. Just need to figure out how far out to go and what shape.

I think I have that Chinese fringe. It's in bloom right now.
Beth said…
Love the roses - David Austin does amazing things and some of the old heirlooms are remarkable too!
Candi said…
I'm your newest follower! Love your garden design with the evergreens! The Chinese Fringe is in bloom here now. It's also called Lorepetalum. It can get HUGE, like 8' tall and 8' wide. Especially when left to grow naturally.
You have gorgeous hardscape in your garden now! I love lorapetalum, and got a beautiful one called 'Razzleberry' that promptly died. It just did not survive our winters here, but even so, I'm in garden zone 8. Viburnum tinus grows well, however, as do most roses. Who knows why they die sometimes--changes in the microclimate, a particularly harsh winter, some critter chomped the roots below the soil surface?

Athena at Minerva's Garden

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