Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Ready or Not….A Garden Tour

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I have just been asked to open my garden for a large community tour in June.

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It is sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce and it is a big event in our county.

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They are expecting 80 plus visits over a 7 hour tour. 

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I will be one of four home gardens in the event this year. 

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And needless to say I am very happy and excited about being asked. 

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And a bit overwhelmed about where to begin!


I started to feel a bit better when I looked at my photos from June of last year. 

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Now I can picture what will be blooming when and where my spots are that might need a bit of color.

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I am so happy I got an early start this year on the new beds and planted so many new things!

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I was geared up for a busy season for our own events and wanted extra blooms, so this is a “good year” to be asked.

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Basically I am just adding a few knockouts and shrubs…. and then dividing some of the things that bloom in June into other areas.  Many needed divided this year anyway.

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I am so glad the daylilies will be blooming at that time!

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I have a long section of wild ones from the home site I lived at when I was born. The house is long gone, but my mom and I dug up tons of the plants and moved them.  The following spring they did dirt work and the bank was gone, but they live on in my garden now. 

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So what will I be doing to get ready for it?  Weeding, mulch and last minute seeding.  I have been adding some annual vines to the front porch areas and extra zinnias, larkspur and cosmos. 

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I am really thinking of how to rework the deck and front porch areas.  All the while trying not to go to crazy buying things I don’t need.  I have to tell you I am not an annual person and I really do not do containers.  I like my roots in the dirt and the hose within sight.  If I have to carry water to it…look out!  I have a feeling I may be borrowing a planter or two from my family and friends….lol.  Then they can take them home! 

I did find this online and wanted to share….

Tips to make tour go smoothly

Members of the Going Native Garden Tour committee came up with a flier listing ``garden etiquette'' for those who sign up for their event. These common-sense tips are worth sharing, including my favorite: ``Be generous with your praise, gentle in your criticism'':

• Bring a hat, sunscreen, water and comfortable walking shoes. It's likely that the weather will be sunny and warm.

• You will be visiting residential neighborhoods and parking will be limited. If parking looks impossible, move on to the next garden and try later in the day. Carpool if possible.

• Plan a lunch break and pit stops. Restrooms will not be available in homes.

• Bring a camera and a notepad to record plants and landscape treatments you especially like. Ask permission from the owner or docent on duty before taking any photos.

• Stay on the marked paths.

• Do not clip or injure the plants in any way.

• No smoking. No pets. No strollers. No food. No litter.

• Turn off your cell phone or at least put it on ``vibrate'' mode so everyone can enjoy the gardens.

• Take only one copy of any available handout.

• Sign the guest book.


If you have tips or thoughts on garden tour ideas…please leave me a note!

Happy Gardening….Brooke

(All photos from my own garden last June)


  1. How exciting for you! I wish I could come and tour your garden and meet you!

  2. Your garden will look fantastic for the tour. What fun!

  3. Congratulations! What an honor to be recognized for the work and love you put into a garden.

    What do you have planted with your poppies? They're so sweet.

  4. Robin---Come on over! I'd love to meet you too.

    KeeWee---thank you so much, I am hoping.

    And Sandy, everything...lots of salvias, pholx, evening scented stock and cosmos. I am running out of "poppy room", they need an open space and the mulch pushed back to germenate and my landscape is closing in. I have plants about a half an inch high, but they are now under the leaves of things. So do I thin the big stuff, probably not now with a garden tour in a few weeks. So we'll see what we end up with. Some peony poppys for sure.

  5. Wow Brooke, I wish I could have Scotty beam me over. It's going to be a fabulous tour. I hope you won't stress. When I visit gardens, I never notice the "imperfections" until the owners, all apologetic, point them out. From the looks of your photos there will be no shortage of ahhhh, ... moments as attendees take in the beauty. They'll likely be querying you about the names of plants so a reference or signage might be helpful. But other than that I have no advice to offer. It looks to me like you'll have everything in order. I hope you'l keep us posted.

  6. Thank you Grace, I appreciate that. I have been thinking about signage. I have so many things that even I have trouble remembering the names and when I go to other gardens I wish things were marked as well. I am thinking about using numbers on a card and then having a list handout of the names of plants. That way if they are like me they can mark what they like and look for it later.

  7. Oh, I would just be a big o mess if I were doing such a thing. I'd obsess like mad..lol I love your dane btw...we are big dane lovers having had 3, one still with us..and we added an english mastiff a few years back. Don't think we will ever be without atleast one Dane.

  8. What a beautiful garden you have, Brooke! I am having rock envy right now!

    I am going to find your post about the actual tour--just assuming you have one.


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