The photo above was taken on the deck of our Denman Island home. We’ve worked hard this past week, getting the garden and yard into shape, and getting these pots done was one of the final chores. From now on it’s a matter of keeping on top of the weeds, deadheading, watering and enjoying. And, hopefully back to the sewing machine!
Our garden and yard must meet three criteria. Plants need to be drought tolerant, deer resistant and low maintenance. Our household water comes from a local lake and we’re mindful of how much we use, especially when the summer is hot and dry, like 2015. We have several different grasses and herbs. They do well with little to no water. I’ve been ‘collecting’ lavenders, which pass our tests while providing beautiful colour and scent.
Deer resistance is more difficult and seems to change with each year. Our yard is fenced on three sides. The deer have figured out that the fourth side is open. Typically any plant that has a strong scent and fuzzy foliage is safe. It’s frustrating to learn the hard way that chives are left alone, unless they’re garlic chives. The latter were munched to the ground. I planted some bright yellow yarrow – Achillea millifolium – two years ago and it thrived. So I planted a couple of different red yarrows, only to find that, overnight, they were destroyed. It seems like the best way to deal with this is with a sense of humour.
As for sewing, well, I’m kind of stuck. I finished the big, bright Indian quilt and a couple of smaller projects. I’ve got something half quilted but I’m having trouble coming up with ideas for new projects. The Denman Island Studio Tour is coming up in August and I’d like to get a few things ready for that. Big, small, table, wall, bed-sized? Can’t decide. There are so many different things to do in the summer; I think the change from being indoors quilting and sewing to being outdoors playing will be good for inspiration and ideas.
While I’ve been mulling this over I’ve read two books by an author/artist named Austin Kleon. Steal Like an Artist and Show Your Work. Terrific books for anyone who is or inspires to be creative. Check out Austin Kleon’s work here: Austin Kleon
I’m also enjoying the series of four books, known as the Neapolitan Novels, written by Elena Ferrante. They take place in Naples and follow the lives of two girls, beginning in the 1960’s. Lots of twists and turns, interesting characters and a great look into the gritty life of working class Neapolitans.
I hope you get a chance to change pace, do some fun things and pick up a good book over the summer. Let us know if you discover a ‘must read’.
Thanks for reading.