Saturday, June 28, 2008

The European Flair

The Browder Garden is a very special garden and similar in style to mine, though more refined-I am working on it-have patience! I enjoyed Helga and Dewey's garden very much.

Like many couples I meet who garden together, each half of the couple have their niche. Helga's is the flowers, and Dewey's is the vegetables.

I was very sorry to have missed seeing Helga at her garden, but I did meet her and her daughter at my garden. They made the long trek out here to Woodlawn to visit me just prior to my taking off to tour the other gardens. I appreciated it! Dewey was home though and showed Julie, Nancy and I around his extensive vegetable garden (a big hit with the crowds). He also shared some water; which was ever so helpful on the hot day we toured the gardens!
I learned quite a bit about vegetables from Dewey. Our vegetable gardens are very similar in that we both garden in raised beds and have solid paths in our vegetable gardens. His is surrounded by a picket fence and has a wonderful garden house located nearby. Dewey's garden gets full sun (a must for vegetables) and mine only part sun (but my veggies do okay due to the garden's orientation). Dewey taught us about a salad you can grow in the summertime. A big goal of mine is to pick greens at the same time I pick cucumbers and tomatoes. This is a hard task in Tennessee since most salad greens like cool weather and there is not much of that here in the summer. I believe it was Portulaca oleracea Dewey was growing. I am going to look for the seeds and try it out as it likes the heat! Some of the Browder's favorite vegetables growing in the vegetable garden are: German potatoes, tomatoes, beans, peas, a variety of salads, radishes, garlic, onions, carrots, Kohlrabi, corn, peppers and eggplant.

Helga and Dewey have six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. Their grandchildren's names are: Nicholas, Phillip, Eric, Katie, Lauren and Jessica, and they all reside in the garden! No silly, not the grandchildren literally, but the Pin Oaks that are named after the grandchildren. Naming trees is a good thing and I know a few other gardeners who name their trees. The only named tree I have is Christine's tree. I'll have to name a few more.

Helga, I hope to make it out to your garden when you are home. I would love to talk with you about it. And come back here when you have time and we can talk too!

Helga and Dewey wrote a lovely description of their garden which I would like to share with you all:

Our gently sloping backyard is a combination of island gardens and floating flower beds with different characteristics.

The 'Gazebo Surround' is our shade garden and is hope to: hostas, ferns, bleeding hearts, astilbes, hydrangeas and other shade loving plants.

The 'Moon Garden' used to only contain white flowering plants, but is now our new Austin Peay State University (APSU) Garden and sports a combination of red and white plants-APSU's colors! (That is it with the white Adirondick chair, Annabelles and red geraniums)

The 'Northern Boundary' island is the busiest part of the garden in terms of plant variety, color and structure. It is anchored by a native cedar tree; which is home to lots of our feathered friends. The hummingbirds absolutely love the bright red monarda (bee balm) and find lots of other flowers for food.

The 'Rockery' is mostly a spring bed with azaleas, iris, and daffodils. It also glows later in the summer with crepe myrtles and sedum. A garden house (German style), the vegetable garden, a berry patch, and a few smaller accent gardens float in the upper garden to round out the backyard.

Most beds are framed by flagstone borders which we have added over the years. We have lots of wildlife including everything from birds to deer to rabbits to squirrels to turkeys to foxes and butterflies. Some critters we enjoy more than others.

Helga wanted to share a funny story about the garden tour. Patsy, her daughter and helper on garden tour day, was walking toward a garden while a visitor was also walking toward it from a different direction. All of a sudden a baby deer jumped up and ran right by them in a big hurry! It scared both ladies half to death and must have been a sight. The baby deer had been in the bed all morning even while some 140 visitors toured the garden.

I want to share a funny story too. Not many will experience this happening-and it is probably a good thing. Helga liked a hypertufa pot I had made. I offered it to her at a very reasonable price, complete with the plants. She unfortunately got a bonus with the pot unknown to her. While driving away from my house on Lylewood Road, a big toad landed on her ankle. Imagine some panic and crazy driving for a quick minute there. She stopped and let the big fella out and continued on her way. I asked her daughter if she got a picture as it would surely make a good blog picture. She replied, "NO, it was NOT a Kodak moment." Too, too funny and I am glad you are safe Helga and Patsy!

in the garden....


  1. Another beautiful garden. I felt as though I were there with you. I'm surprised that the baby deer stayed that long even though I know they are to stay put till mommy comes.
    And the frog is sooooo funny. I can just see the reaction of Helga. I myself picked up a pot last evening & got startled as a frog came out of the soil. I didn't know he was there. I just gently put him in a garden so he can catch bugs.
    Thanks for sharing Tina.

    Hello to all. I hope all have a beautiful day & get the much needed rain for you gardens.

  2. Good morning Lola and everyone! Those toads are something else. You have to watch for them. Wonder if the little guy will find his way back to my house? They are great in the garden-eat all sorts of stuff. My tads 'flew the coop'. I will be updating everyone soon. Any rain in Florida as yet?

  3. O that is so funny. Do they blog, if not then they probably don't think about good blog pic. I know I do and my camera goes everywhere I go. The garden tours on the blog is almost like being there without being hot.

  4. Funny stories. We are being over run with rabbits this year.

  5. Yep, too funny, toads like to be everywhere. We keep putting them out of our office every year. They like to get in because of the cool concrete. One year we had something rustling in a upright paper bag with items in it. It was a large toad trying to get out! I don't know about yours making it back to you might! We keep evicting them and they keep returning! Course we never keep the garage door closed.

  6. Am I the only one to notice twin pictures? I was enlarging them for a better view and thought I was loosing my mind there for a minute. Then realized that Tina was loosing hers! LOL... Ops...

    Did people see the fawn or was it hidden that well amongst the gardens? I bet that little guy was thinking, “What did my mommy get me into”

    I would have probably drove in the ditch had the frog jumped out on me! Glad it was a funny and safe story as it could have had a worse ending...

    I really like the APSU garden with the Red and White flowers and the Adirondack chair! Those chairs remind me of the ocean for some reason. I think red and white together are so beautiful. I have a small red and white planter this year. I wanted to see the Gartenhaus to compare to the one we had. Did you get a shot of that Tina?

    Another beautiful Garden...

  7. Skeeter, I noticed the twins but I just enjoyed it the second time around also

    Great post Tina I thank you, Helga and Dewey for letting us enjoy it.

    I figure with all the mentions of German and the german name of Helga, that Helga is German. As any of us know that have been to Germany, it is a very lush country with majestic gardens. As I just mentioned a few days ago, even the geraniums look like some fancy, dancey plant as they are so lush with blooms you can't even see any leaves. Whenever I hear the word Germany, flowers is the first thing that comes in my mind. I so enjoyed both trips over there. Just looking at the flowers made it a great trip, not to mention all the other things. Me thinks, Helga has done her country very proud of her!!!

    Now I will show how stupid I am about some things....What is a german potato and how does it differ from ours. Living in a state that produces many potatoes (a close secong to Iowa) I am very curious about that. Also what is Kohlrabi?

  8. Sarah, Nope, I don't think they blog. First rule of blogging, take your camera-right?

    Jillybean, Any funny stories with the bunnies? Skeeter has some in that she has made friends with the enemy it seems.

    Dawn, They do love garages don't they? Gotta be careful not to lock them in-dried and dessicated toads not cool.

    Skeeter, Tina is loosing her mind. Yes, twin pictures. Not intentional. I will fix it right away. Thanks for telling me as I had no idea. No shot of the gartenhaus. This blogger forgot her camera and Helga sent me these. Sorry! I will see what other pics I have. No one saw the fawn until it jumped up. Fawns will lie perfectly still until mommy comes back. It got more than it bargained for on this day.

    Mom, Helga is German. Beautiful gardens over there as you remember. I am not sure what variety of potatoes German potatoes are, maybe red ones? But kohlrabi is a cross between a cabbage and turnip. Grown for its tuber and very commonly grown in Germany, but I don't think it is here. I know I don't grow it-or have ever eaten it.

  9. Fixed the pics, I guess I liked those irises so much I posted it twice. I do like the one with the girl though very much. I added two new pics. Thanks for telling me guys.

  10. Lovely garden...I do love tours, so many good ideas and an opportunity to talk about gardening and plants with others.


  11. Gail, Tours are kind of like blogging but in person? Gotta love it.

  12. Hello Tina, We're back home tired but we did have a great trip. Now to get the RV unpacked and cleaned. I'll get started on that tomorrow. And of all things my washer tore up the day we left. We had to get on the road so didn't have time to call for repairs so I'll tote the laundry to my Dad's house and do it!

    We did enjoy the garden tour very very much. Everyone was very willing to answer our questions. And the gardens were awesome! Sorry we didn't get to say goodbye to you when we left, but you were busy elsewhere. I didn't see your guest book and didn't think of it until we were back home.

    Will have to make a run to the big city tomorrow and buy a pump for my fish pond. Sometime while we were gone mine decided to stop working.

    I will also address my computer problem this week, but am posting this as anonymous! NINA

  13. What a tranquil and lovely garden. Thanks Tina for sharing what I missed out on by not doing the tour. We grew kohlrabi back in PA as a kid --ate them straight out of the garden after we clipped the shooting out appendages. I loved them --tasted like a spicy cabbage to me but not many people liked them --like my siblings. Hope everyone is having a great day --I painted the front of my shed last night:) Now, I need more paint to finish the backside. Had the kiddos out early today --we thought it was going to rain --but it missed us again:( I really need to water my new rose of sharon bushes --they are so pretty.

  14. Hi Nina --welcome back. Your cleome are thriving in my backyard:) Everyone loves them!

  15. Nina and Anonymous, My two regulars I haven't seen as much of lately-good to hear from you.

    Nina, Unpack the RV and get settled in. Time to relax and enjoy the garden-too hot to do much of anything else. I took a good pic of you, Dana and Sarah. Okay if I post it on my post about the tour? You can can sign the book some other time. No problem.

    Anonymous, New Rose of Sharons? You have been busy! I have never eaten kohlrabi so thanks for the description. Not sure how to even cook it. I hope we get rain later today.

  16. You all can't seem to get rain and that's all we have! Nice day yesterday but two soaking showers popped and coming back to my area today, misting....all day. I'm molding.

  17. Anonymous so glad you had good luck with the cleome seed. Mine did not come up. I have seedlings in between the sidewalk and flower bed and have been trying to get a few of them transplanted to another location. I can't leave them where they are. Mine are a long way from blooming!!

    Tina it's o.k. to use the pic. I found a really nice nursery and landscaping place close to the rv park. I bought two oak leafs. He does a lot of propagation and the oak leafs were some he had grown. This fall we'll have to make a run down that way. NINA

  18. What a beautiful garden! The yard looks to be a nice size, and the scenery is breathtaking~!

  19. Dawn, I think I may have to drive the truck up to your place and bring back a load of water! Skipped us again but tomorrow a 50% chance so hopefully, we will get a wet garden...

    Two bunny and one deer in the yard as I type. Stay away from the no no plants!

  20. Ops, forgot to say welcome back Nina... Missed you and glad you had a nice RV trip.

  21. Just looked at the new pictures. Love them! The little girl is the Savannah, GA girl from the "Garden of Good and Evil". I have been wanting one since my first Savannah visit but they are so expensive around here. A big tourist buy so price is up there. Maybe one day I'll splurge.

  22. Dawn, We need the rain. My driveway garden will be redesigned on Monday and I need the moisture. Can't wait!

    Nina, Glad you are back. Anonymous's cleomes are doing very well. I am glad she likes them.

    DP-Thanks. You are always so sweet on here.

    Skeeter, I know nothing of the Savannah girl. Maybe a post sometime? It would be interesting to me for sure. I did love this girl and don't know why I didn't post her earlier. Too much school, pics and what not I guess. G'night all.

  23. Tina, we finally got some rain here. A couple days good showers. Plants sure are happy--me too.

    Glad you are back & had a lovely time Nina.

    Skeeter, hope you get some rain soon.

    Dawn, you could funnel some down Skeeters way. I don't think she'd mind.

    Anonymous I think Cloe me are pretty. I have seed but didn't get around to plant. Maybe next yr.

    Jean I too would like to know what is German potatoes. Must try kohlrabi also. Have seen it but never tasted--thought about trying to grow just to try.

    Jillybean, wish I had a rabbit or 2. Would make me feel a little country.

    Hi Gail, DP & Sarah. Hope your day was a nice one.

  24. Hi Tina, busy day here --but I wasn't as motivated as Skeeter --lol. I didn't mow my yard this weekend. I wanted it to rain first:) I might have to try to get it done tomorrow morning -very, very early. (Just trying to trick the rain into coming by saying I PLAN on mowing) hahaha! We went to church tonight, stopped by the commissary for the mandatory fill up on milk --they have the absolute best prices. I made an ice cream cake for hubby --he loves homemade ones --and they are so easy to make. We'll chow down on it tomorrow when mama, sis and family come over for a visit.
    I'm not sure if Nina or Tina gave me some 4 o'clocks but I planted them and they are popping up:) I can't wait to see what they look like --I love surprises.
    Girl model left her toad go this morning after we ran --I am happy she didn't keep it too long. Just long enough to name it and say it was hers.
    I hope a few bunnies come your way Lola --they hit up my beans really bad. They are so soft and cute though.
    Hi Jean --hope you are staying cool and getting in some good swimming. Hubby finally has the heater off --the water feels great though --since it's been so warm.

    Hi Skeeter --hope your enjoying all your cute fuzzy critters. We sure did:)
    Hi Dawn --how is summer break? I'm sure baseball is taking up a great deal of time --glad to hear Zack was selected for all stars. We have two more games and about four more practices until our season ends. It will be nice to have the nights free again --to swim, play in the yard and not be in such a hurry.
    Well, y'all I am getting tired so I better get a move on --I tend to get windy when I am overtired, lol. Ciao!

  25. So happy you had some rain Lola! We are crossing fingers for the 50% rain chance to come through for us today!

    Girl Model would love the frogs in our yard! We have so many that she could hold captive a different one each day then have a pet frog at all times! This morning while walking to the veggie garden to sprinkle a bit of water, I spotted a little green tree frog napping on a Caladium leaf. So cute!

    Tina, the little girl statue was in the book/movie “The Garden of Good and Evil” (murder Mystery)in the setting of Savannah. A statue in the cemetery I believe or a garden but I view most cemeteries as gardens. We see them all over our area but as I said, pricy statues due to the popularity of the movie. Some ugly people steal the statues from people’s homes. Sad….

  26. I really enjoyed reading this post and looking at your pictures! This is one garden I would've loved to visit myself. Thanks

  27. Andrea-Glad you are back and I did miss your posts. Helga is also German but I don't think from your area. You would definitely have loved this garden. Maybe someday you can visit?

  28. Just had another good rain. A lot of thunder too. Need to have grass mowed. Will check garden/yard in the morning to see how things are fairing.

    Have a good night ya'll.

  29. Yeah Lola for the rain! Still hoping for some here.

  30. Lola, I am so happy you had some rain! The yard, planters and veggies will love it!
    It skipped right over us once again. We will have rain eventually.