Cottage Flora Thursdays #7

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…

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
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
Please be a follower (if you are not already) & link up to Cottage Flora Thursday this week with your garden posts!
To see what I am linking to this week – please check my “Cottage Links” label…


Naturally Carol said…
I appreciate a real look at your garden today...but you know it's not only your garden (and house) that I love about your is getting to know you and a little glimpse into your life and passions.
Darla said…
You should see some green around your gardens very soon.
i love that you were honest and showed the reality of your trials and errors. your yard still looks so beautiful. love the white pocket fence!
Kathy said…
I do a lot of what you do. I wish I could grow some things that just don't work in Zone 7 - but we do have a very long growing season - so that's a trade-off. I too have unfortunately lost some treasures - we had to move them so my husband could paint the house - it isn't finished so I haven't been able to move those things that survived back - right now my garden looks kind of chaotic - and I have invasive vinca and blackberry vines to contend with - they're wicked!
We persevere!!!
Thanks for hosting this party so we can share our gardens that we love - for good or for bad!
Joani said…
Spring is just around the corner & it will be so exciting to C what has survived and give us that smile once again. Keep looking & smiling.
Donnie said…
Thanks for the information. I know gardening is a lot of work too.
I also like your picket fence. I am sorry about the loss of thoes beautiful roses I lost a couple of plants to frost that caught us off gaurd. Thanks for sharing your garden and I will be back to link up to COTTAGE FLORA THURSDAY'S when it comes up. Have a good day...........Julian
michelle said…
I am so happy your posted those and I feel for you! :) My garden has been ripped up, re-planted, ripped up again and again since we moved here 13 years ago! I go by what I see and what I like but I know that I have to make better decisions based on climate, soil, water, shade, sun, etc. I am so hoping that this year I can get a good base for my garden and work from there.
Have a wonderful day!
I love your garden! What a cute fence and gate!!

I can't wait for spring!!!
I bought the same ones except for the Cottage Gardens one. I can grow roses and ferns. Thanks for stopping by and following. I'm off to follow you too!
Jessa said…
Thanks for letting me link my older posts! I am going back into them to edit and add a link back to you. Oh and your not-so-green thum, yeah, still way greener than mine. ;) lol. Thanks for the fun meme!!
Jessa said…
thum... s/b thumb, oops.
Debra Howard said…
Looks beautiful to me. Nice dirt and all ready for planting. You are a jump ahead. I still have beds to clean and leaves to get mulched. Not enough time so hoping to get some of that done next week(if I don't get picked for jury duty that is.)
awal.ny said…
Thank you so much for this post. As sorry as I am for your dying plants, they make me feel like a more normal gardener. But I still think you do a great job with your garden design.
Alyssa said…
Thanks for hosting another great garden party! I love the flowers and all of the talented folks! Your gardens are sooo pretty! Can't wait to show mine, once all of the snow melts! Arg! Alyssa of Boston Bee
Julie Marie said…
Hi Tracie, I tried to comment last night, but we were in the middle of a huge blizzard with thunder and lightning no less and the power bleeped!... this morning my gardens are buried under deep snow... your yard looks great though, lots of green already... I just bought that Flea Market garden magazine too, the premier issue, it looks fun!... like you, I hang out at the garden centers alot, read alot, and ask alot of questions... it all started when I was a little girl asking my great~grandmother the names of all her cottage garden flowers... I love visiting your links and seeing what everyone across the country is planting and how they grow!... xoxo Julie Marie
Becca's Dirt said…
Hope those come back but they do look kinda sick. I've seen plants look like that though and survive. Everything should be greening up soon.
I've had so many trials and errors over the years :(

You would be proud of me, over the weekend I planted a bunch of flowers. Maybe next week I can's been raining this week.

Hope you have a fabulous day!
Unknown said…
That is why I hate to go thru my old garden tags, so many things are gone! Very pretty post, I am glad we found each other. I added a link too.... Brooke
Your yard is just lovely! I would be happy just seeing the grass right now, but the snow is taking it's time melting. I always look forward to seeing the buds on my rosebushes and I have an annual that I am looking forward to using again this year - Lantana. It just took off for me last Summer and by the end of the season was like a bush!
Well can I at least admire your bravery at trying and your Tanitansy of never giving up just because of a few hiccups along the way.

Thank you for hosting another lovely garden party this week.

Blessings Kelsie
Hi. I just joined your linky party. Love your garden too! I love boxwoods; we lined our driveway with them.
Have a great day!
~ Julie
Unknown said…
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