Saturday, May 28, 2011


My little shade garden has St. Francis, the Patron Saint of Animals watching over it. I acquired my St. Francis of Asisi Statue over ten years ago, and he always has a special place in my side shade garden. He sits in a corner surrounded by ferns and hostas with different types of "dead nettle" at its base. Through the years, my ferns have grown larger, and St. Francis kind of "peaks" out of his corner. He is made of concrete and has been stained a brown color.

He was obtained at a concrete statue company just south of where I live. After considering other statues at area garden centers and deeming them just too expensive an acquisition, I decided to visit the small statuary company that I had passed several times before, but never explored. He was a definite bargain at $39.00. Reaching just about 3 feet in height a similar statue would have been over $100.00 back then. He comes out of my garden in the late Fall and is stored carefully in my garage over the winter months.

He brings me and my garden visitors comfort knowing that he is watching over all the birds and animals that frequent it. Just looking at him holding a small bird in his hands and with a small deer at the base, gives me immense comfort.

I highly recommend St. Francis for your gardens, be they shade or sun. He will surely bring immense comfort and joy to you, also.

Rosemary, Garden Gate Designs

Sunday, May 22, 2011


With all the rain we have had in the last month and a half, my little shade garden is all filled in and at the "max". Good thing I separated a lot of my plants last Fall, although you would never know it to look at it.

I wanted to show you a picture of my "Palm Fern" today. It is very tall and willowy. Very unusual. I purchased it at a Home and Garden Tour a few years ago and this Spring, I moved it from my back shade garden to my side shade garden.

Also, a picture of my black wrought iron bench that sits next to my Arbor. I have it in front of hostas and trellises filled with different clematises. One of them is an "Autumn Clematis" that blooms with tiny white flowers in the Fall and is very prolific. This Spring I was digging some of it up as it gets kind of invasive. I acquired it from a Garden Club friend a few years back. This year I hope to add another trellis to the left of the others for more clematis. Surrounding the hostas in front are large smooth round stones in various colors that were my Mom's Vacation Rock Collection. When she passed on I took them from her home and incorporated them in my garden as a remembrance of her. She and my Dad traveled a lot in their retirement years and they were brought back from Arizona and New Mexico.

I hope to have pictures of my newly acquird flower baskets and mandevil vine that I purchsed over the weekend for my gardens.

Hoping you enjoyed a little trip through my garden.

Rosemary, Garden Gate Designs

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Shade Garden is Almost Full

My side shade garden is growing so fast with all the rain we had in April and now continuing into May. All the plants that I moved from my back garden (the ones the garden club did not dig out because they were not up yet) are thriving.

I found three jack-in-the-pulpits, a handfull of trillium, assorted bits of hosta, a palm fern, solomon's seal and ginger. Also, a small epidemium blooming in white with purple center. It was so exciting to see that I had a few of my special plants to include in the side garden. I was even able to salvage a piece of my Mom's Memory Hosta "Striptease" and included the beautiful stone with appropriate saying with it in the garden.

The picture of the bushy plant with the yellow flowers is a yellow bleeding heart called Corydallis. It reseeds easily and I have several in my garden, now. Such a cheery little plant.

My three bird baths are now situated in the garden, and the hummingbird feeder has a new home in that side shade garden on a shepard's hook. I am hoping that the honeysuckle blooms on the arbor in front will attract them back and that they will find their feeder. I can see it from my kitchen window now.

My litttle "Red Dragon" Japaneese Maple tree is now 3 years old. It has grown every year and never ceases to amaze me. This year, it is bushing out. I purchased it at Marc's Discount Store in our town for only $20.00. A rare find, indeed! I took a chance, and so far, so good. Perfect location for it, I suppose. I would love to purchase another one of another species to replace the Female Holly Bush that I lost in that garden up by the decks this past winter. Just hate to pay over $100.00 for it. I will have to start looking around for a bargain.

I hope my blog followers enjoyed pics from the garden. Our deck plans and estimate finally came back and we are ready to order. Cannot wait. I want to enjoy the Summer outdoors on that newly extended decking with its new furniture.

Garden Gate Designs

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Little Garden is Gone!

Well, the back shade garden is gone. All the plants were donated to our local Garden Club's Annual Plant Sale which is next Saturday. Here are the pics of the empty space.

Soon the Deck company will be here to tear off the railings on the back of the large deck and the side railing on the small deck. There will be a nice large step down to the new area complete with new railing connecting both decks over what was my back shade garden. Cannot wait to shop for new outdoor furniture and do some garden containers with flowers.

I am still picking plants out of that garden that were missed. A jack-in-the-pulpet, trillium, three hostas and a large fern. I have room in my side shade garden for them.

Until next time.

Rosemary, Garden Gate Designs