In order to love simply, it is necessary to know how to show love.
-- Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Love is shown in how the details of living daily are expressed.
One repair leads to another. Even the most careful craftsmen cannot work without creating some collateral damage. It is now two months of home and garden convalescing from the fumigation. It has been an opportunity to re-think elements of the garden setting.
|Repaired archway shows off nicely against newly painted retaining wall.|
The gateway arch protecting the pathway to the back door began its life as a standard big-box cedar archway. Not quite as wide as the side yard opening, my hunky handyman husband amended its frame with shelves to broaden its footprint to the full width of the garden opening. Alas, the archway had fallen victim to the heavy fumigation tent.
Some things cannot be planned to perfection. Experience has its place. Blue seemed alright in theory. It is my favorite color. Our house is blue. There are blue tones in the driveway paving stones. In reality, it never loved the landscape or architecture. Real life is like that.
Resurfacing the wall was my first choice. The budget demanded - stick with paint. Okay. But no more blue. The color would need to relate organically with the blues and grays of home and roof, but blue failed in application. Move on.
The inspiration came from my favorite gardens. Their common denominator are broad backdrops of green. For your enjoyment, pictures taken of the Portland Rose Garden have been dropped in this post.
The formerly blue retaining spent a week striped in 5 shades of green until 'Weatherfield Moss' got the unanimous nod. Two gallons coated the impression of a hedge across the wall.
|Plectranthus 'Blue Yonder'|
What I love about her is she looks so dainty. So well decked out in velvety leaves trimmed in white with floral spires impossibly saturated in purest blue. So delicate appearing, her looks are at odds with her iron constitution. Here, she thrives in a pot in full sun. She cools the roots of her companion roses, protecting it both from the vagaries of weather and also the irregular care of the gardener.
|As soon as the fumigation was scheduled, our roofer was called to inspect afterwards|
Last night an inch of rain fell. Good thing the roofer came by to inspect last week.
|Catching a cement roofing tile takes skill|
By law, wood roofs are no longer allowed in Southern California. Fire hazard. When it came time to replace the overhead kindling, we chose cement tile grooved to mimic the grain of wood, in the deepest gray we could find. For added shadow line, tiles are offset.
No material is without its drawbacks. A cement roof requires maintenance. Because it cracks. Particularly if it is walked on. Like after exterior painting, washing skylights or exterior painting. Even a good strong wind can take tiles off.
If, like us, you choose it for its many attributes, then you need to find a good roofer. Someone honest, craftsman-like and reasonably priced. Someone like Matt Walker.
The featured rose garden is the International Rose Test Garden -
Washington Park, 400 SW Kingston Ave, Portland, Oregon.
(Images taken at the 2008 GWA (Garden Writer's) Symposium)
Matt Walker can be reached at 714.525.2284