Thursday, March 12, 2015

Front Porch Spring Transformation Reveal

As Promised I'm Revealing some of my Spring Transformation on the Front Porch, which is still in progress and I'm having a lot of Fun with it.   I absolutely Adore Gardening and working outside in the nice weather.   Every Spring I get a hankering to overhaul the Front Porch and some of our Acreage to Transform it, since our harsh Summers aren't too kind to most fauna except the Native Species.   So I like to brighten things up with new Pots and new Plantings as a New Beginning every Spring.

So I headed out to an old stomping ground I used to live in years ago, where Import Shops abound and Prices are the best in the Valley for such things as Gorgeous Talavera Art Pottery.   For those who are Locals let me suggest Briseno Azteca Imports in Surprise, AZ at 16225 N. Dysart Road, where the Proprietor Jose Briseno will treat you right and you'll find the best selection and lowest prices of Talavera Imports around.  I don't mind giving Jose a shameless plug because his Inventory ROCKS and he's really Good People.

So I re-potted what few plants had survived last Season... then yanked a few out later, like this Ivy, as they didn't look like a Resurrection was gonna happen without Holy Intervention.   And replaced most of last year's plantings with healthy new Succulents, Veggies, Herbs and French Lavender for this Season's Transformation and Harvest.

Luckily most Spider Plants, Asparagus Fern, Succulents, Cacti and Ice Plants are easily propagated by dividing and cuttings so I still had an abundance of those to transplant, so I didn't have to break the Budget to get the look I Desired... just stretch that dreaded Budget ever so tightly.  *Winks*  Most of my Budget was set aside for the Beautiful Bright New Pottery which will last a few years and is worth Investing in.  Since it looks Gorgeous and protects the plants from Gophers, which decimated my Garden for a few years before I did above ground planting tactics to deter them.


Yes, I know... I allegedly still have two Working Cats left... but this is Miss Priss' version of "Working Cat"... I think she envisions herself as a Boss Cat since she mostly assumes the Supervisory Stance like this and oversees everything I'M doing from her comfortable perches.  *LOL*  And Old Morris... well, he's Ancient now and most Critters get the best of him in his Old Age.  The Wild Birds even swoop down and steal his kibbles while he's still standing there and he looks on like, "Ahhhh shit... lets just Share shall we!?"  *Smiles*

And like most Aging things Old Morris spends most of his days taking long leisurely Naps now and he's taken a Retirement of sorts from being a 'Working Cat' after all these years.   He earned it though, for many years he was the best 'Catter' around, but those days clearly are now behind him.   Sometimes he just randomly dozes off and falls asleep standing up or is so Still that the Kiddos have startled him by touching him or yelling his Name because they thought he was dead!   They do that sometimes with Grandpa too if he's appearing too Still for too long!   *Bwahahahaha!*  He and Miss Priss are usually cuddled up on their beanbag pillows on the Porch watching ME Work now.

But I didn't mind not having willing Volunteers on board for the Porch and Garden overhaul, sometimes it's just easier to do what you've envisioned yourself rather than re-do it behind unwilling Victims you've recruited to Help you and are doing any of it under protest.   Princess T likes to organize and sweep so I always put her to Work doing what she enjoys doing because she does a Fine Job and is often a willing Volunteer... but The Man and Young Prince, well, they're useless when it comes to Projects around the house and yard, they fade too fast to get much Work out of them and they're just not that into it to be self-motivated.  They'd be Content living in a Townhouse with Common Areas someone else maintains... I'm the one that Loves a lot of Land and a Big Garden that belongs to me and I can take Pride in.

Half of my Chocolate Mint not only survived, but thrived from last Season, so I was Happy about that.   This tastes Great in Salads and the lovely aroma is akin to an After Dinner Mint.  I've had very good luck with many Mint varieties in the Desert, but it's best to plant them in containers since they can be invasive otherwise and spread to where you don't want them to go.   It's Wonderful to have things that thrive anywhere and under almost any circumstances, but it's rather a nuisance to have things that are hard to kill or control in a Garden and take over.

This was prior to the Talavera Pottery being displayed, but you can see it was coming along nicely even though I still had a ways to go in The Process.  It will probably take me a couple of weeks to get it exactly the way I want it, but already everyone is hanging out more there now that everything is Freshened Up and Renewed.

Every Season my Old Hanging Baskets come down and I transplant whatever Survived into the ground around the tiered Gardens outside of our Adobe Walls... and I buy New Hanging Baskets to replace them.   This year I chose some Twig Cone Hanging Baskets filled with a nice variety of hardy Succulents.   They will likely Thrive well even when Summer comes and be drought tolerant, which is important in our Climate since Potted and Hanging Basket plantings dry out quickly even with TLC.

I was nicely Surprised at how reasonably priced these Hanging Baskets were, they weren't any more expensive than plain annual Flowers in ugly plastic Baskets that weren't nearly so visually appealing and wouldn't last through Summer.

I've always Loved Hanging Basket plantings... and Terrarium plantings... but I don't do so many of the latter anymore as I did in the Sixties when they were Mad Popular and every Hippie Pad had to look like a Tropical Jungle Paradise Inside and Out!  *Smiles*   Oh yeah, in the Sixties and Seventies my Spaces always damn near needed a machete to walk through them!  *Winks*

My Brother would Create the Macrame Hangers for the Pots, or Macrame Hanging Tables suspended from the Ceilings... it was all very Zen, Natural and Peacefully Organic.  I'm not so much of a Granola Gal these days, not because I am no longer attracted to the Lifestyle and way of Decorating... but because the Family isn't so much into it and you have to compromise when there are Shared Living Spaces.   They don't wanna hafta carry around machetes and a Guide to get thru the house and yard.  *LOL*   But... the Garden is still my Domain and though I've scaled back considerably, which makes it a lot easier to take care of as well, I still enjoy The Process every Spring of Creating a New and Inviting Space outside for outdoor Living.

Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian


  1. I love your twig hanging baskets, Dawn! I'm having difficulty relating to having plants that don't survive in the heat tho! ;)

    It's funny, I've been thinking of making little stained glass terrariums lately. I used to have quite a few myself - Back in the Day. I think now I'll fill them up with mossy bits, old sticks and maybe a few small skulls as decoration. We have lots of different kinds of mosses out here! I wonder if I transplanted a few mushrooms if they'd survive in one? ;)

    1. Growing Mushrooms in a Terrarium would look so Enchanting, like where Fairies might live! Wish we had Moss here, rarely grows in the Desert for obvious reasons... our Challenges are quite different than most part of the Country to be sure... but I do like that I don't have to shovel Sunshine! *Smiles* Dawn... The Bohemian

  2. Wow I enjoyed the porch so much! Those new pots and hanging baskets are terrific!


A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars. - Og Mandino (1923-1996)

For creativity to flourish one should try to look at everything as though it were being seen for the first or the last time. - Quote from "A Thousand Paths To Creativity" by David Baird

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