With Spring popping up all over here in the high Chihuahuan Desert (however fleeting it might be!), I started thinking about the joy of planting and caring for an ecologically sensitive, organic flower garden. Â A garden that welcomes birds and butterflies and bees and even a shadow dog or two! Â And, yes, also a garden that sometimes does "battle" with voracious deer and rabbits, but a battle waged in a non-harmful, integrated pest management way with the shadow dogs always playing a large part. Â Â
To celebrate Spring and the new flower garden I am going to plant, I curated a collection a couple of days ago from the studios of the very talented Checked In Today guild. Â The collection is called "Down in the Flower Garden, You Might Find . . .
" Â Now this collection is in remembrance of the flower gardens I've had in the various places we have lived, mainly on the East Coast. Â I'm still learning what will do will here in a much more arid, desert climate. Â
Here are a few selections from the collection with a bit about why they were chosen: Â
A favorite flower quote was written by Gerard De Neval, a French novelist in the 1800's: Â "Every flower is a soul blossoming in Nature". Â I have taken that to heart because my soul blossoms with the miracle of flowers, from seeds to exquisite beauty. Â These beautiful rose pink wooden flowers were handmade from birch shavings by AccentsandPetals
Luna moths are my favorite moth, a ghostly, ethereal being that delights when it shows up at night. Â Their adult life span is very fleeting - only 1 week on average. Â In fact, they don't eat because, as an adult, they have no mouth parts. Â Their sole mission(s) is to reproduce (and bring beauty into the world). Â This amazing quilled luna moth is by Sandra ofÂ QuillingbySandraWhite
Birds have always played an important way in my flower gardens to help control unwanted insects. Â I had many, many bird boxes of all different types placed around for bluebirds, chickadees, wrens and many other birds. Â It was always great fun to watch the birds going about their business, picking off insects and then carrying them back to waiting, hungry mouths in the bird boxes. Â This wonderful bird house ornament was handmade from maple, sepele and ebony by Steve ofÂ stevepritchardwoodturning
And speaking of birds, I monitored the bird boxes twice a week, from nest building, to egg laying and brooding, to hatchlings, to finally when the baby birds fledged. Â Data collected was sent to various appropriate agencies. Â It was always a thrill to see the growth of the birds and to witness that initial flight into a new, big world! Â These happy chicks were knitted by Rachael of BlueShedCrafts
Pollinators of all different types were/are always welcome in my gardens: Â bees, wasps, hornets and flies. Â I would stand and smile while watching the business of the pollinators, much as I do now watching them in a pear tree in the back yard here. Â Without these important creatures, we would not have most foods, and, unfortunately, their numbers are drastically declining. Â The quaint pollinator illustration above is part of a Victorian bumble bee stationary set by Karen ofÂ ThreeFrenchHens
Now I never had a koi pond as part of my flower gardens, but a longtime organic gardener friend does, no matter where she has lived. Â We have sat out by her ponds on many, many occasions, talking, pruning, sipping a glass or two of wine, watching the "wildlife" in her gardens and enjoying the soothing sound of her koi ponds Â Koi are supposed to bring good luck and I always felt that sitting there with her. Â These fabulous lucky koi earrings were handmade by Mary ofÂ PrettyGonzo
And the shadow dogs were always welcome into the flower gardens. Â They actually were very easily trained to stay out of the areas where shredded hardwood mulch was scattered. Â Such good dogs! Â And because they were in the gardens daily, their scent helped keep deer and rabbits away. Â Such good, good dogs! Â "Scotty the Pocket Pup", lovingly handmade by Rose of walkinthewoodsllc
, reminds me so much of Mesa, my avatar - just needs one floppy ear! Â LOL!Â
And, up until now, we had always lived in forested areas. Â The avalanche of leaves that were shed each fall were always raked up and hauled to the various compost bins. Â Mother Nature provided the "black gold" that resulted by Springtime, nature's fertilizer used to mulch and feed the new year's flower gardens. Â The necklace was created by me, Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs
I hope you enjoyed the stroll through my flower gardens, meeting my friends. Â Gardeners are always hopeful about what the new gardening season will bring. Â I'm hopeful and excited about a new one here. Â To view the entire collection, here is the link: Â "Down in the Garden, You Might Find . . .
Please leave a comment if you so desire. Â Thank you!