Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Chicks with a few Friends

By Dawn

Thank goodness it stopped raining long enough for my daughter and I to get a much needed project done. It seems like we have not really had a summer this year as it's been really cool and wet. I'm hoping for the dog days of summer to show next month. Anyhow, this is a small set of steps and the end of my backdoor porch. It allows access to under my deck, and it is a very damp and shady spot. The large rock to the left is permanent. In fact, we have a deck post attached to this rock by drilling rebar into the rock then placing the deck post on top of it. What you can't get to you work around.

This is a new wall from this past spring, I thought it being in an undisturbed place (no plowing or mowing) it would be perfect for hens and chicks.
How wonderful since I was too late last year in planting these four in the ground. They sprouted beyond the tray and were in dire need of something to be done to them.

I removed six large hens from another wall I made years ago. My daughter and I were astonished about how many good sized hens and chicks could grow in a small hole. All I had to do was pull a little to get them out! They are virtually growing in the evergreen needles that had washed over the rocks.

The hippo, the frog, the hen and the cow have my houseplants growing within them.
I have grown twin flower vine over another wall and it was gorgeous! Especially when it flowered. It looked like confetti scattered about on top of a green mat. The excavator covered it up when we added to our septic system. I hope to find more growing in my small neck of the woods. It is a dainty little wildflower that goes unnoticed a lot of the time.
That's the plan for the top of this wall, I can imagine all the holes alive with chicks and a greenish mat working it's way along the top curve. It will take a couple of years.....

and I can't wait! In the Garden.


  1. I agree Dawn--that will look fantastic! As a matter of fact, I saw a rock wall in a garden magazine that had all kids of succulents growing in the rocks. I loved it! I think you are really going to like this as it grows. (take pictures!) :)

  2. You wall and steps look great! I know they are going to look even better with the sedums trailing down them! It's going to be so worth the work!

  3. Love it!! I am doing something similar as well, just posted it too.

  4. How wild Dawn,
    I was just telling Darla that Jamie and I need a sedum garden and here you are building your wall. That only confirms we need one more. --Randy

  5. Can't wait to see how quickly your Hens and Chicks fill in the crooks & crannies of the stacked stone wall. :)

  6. Hi Dawn, that will look great. I saw Martha Stewart do something similar a few years ago. I tried and failed, the plants didn't have long enough roots to keep them anchored. I should try again with some different sedum.

    Lola, apologies for not reading more carefully. Yesterday was your post and not Tina's. I'm a slow learner;)

  7. Once the Hens and Chicks fill in it will be very nice!!

  8. Love that rock wall. The chicks will look great hanging out there!

  9. Very cool wall! Some sort of hanging plant on top of the wall to drape down would look neat.

  10. This is the perfect place for your hens and chicks, Dawn! I saw a tall retaining wall in a garden this summer with succulents stuck in every nook and cranny; it looked fantastic. I think yours will look great, too.

  11. The hens and chicks will look great there. For now, I'm loving your little barn yard. Helen

  12. It looks great Dawn. And when it gets full it will really be something. Great job.
    I had a wall in N.C. that the ferns kept poking out of the rocks. It sure was different.

    No apologies necessary, Marnie. I only post once a month for our very generous Blog owner, Tina. She is so gracious to allow me to do so.

  13. It looks great Dawn and will only get better. Your Prickly Pear looks happy also and I have been meaning to tell Tina that the one she brought me last summer is also doing well and has a baby on the top of it. I put it out in the front garden. Should I bring it in for the winter Tina or is it okay outside? I know Dawn lost one that she had left outside.

  14. I was looking for Madame to start raising chickens then the hen and chick plants. LOL Too funny how the mind works when you see a title. I really do like the rock wall! I am after the Saint to lets build one by the garage (carport) but so far, he is not taking the bait of me wanting one. Do I have to resort to whining to get my rock wall? hee hee.. I will gladly trade you some heat for cool and most of all rain!

  15. Hi guys,
    Sunny today!
    Meadow Thyme-I wish everyone could see how cute this little place is, the pictures are good but it didn't capture the quaintness of this area. Progression pictures sure are going to be great!
    Darla-your bed looks wonderful too! Like my daughter said, some people complain about rocks, we just recycle them!
    Randy-love those succulents, they are so maintance free.
    Perennial gardener-I have some in another wall that are full grown and they look as if they are just hanging there, some are!
    Marnie-this little wall is not that thick and everytime it rains I keep running to the deck to see if the hens and chicks washed out, so far so good! I think you should try again, I picked areas where the hole went downward.
    Thanks, Janet. It's perfect for this area as it's so undisturbed but quite visable.
    Tina-you know Maine, so many rocks to do so much with.
    Dave-that's a good idea, I'm just getting my houseplants built up again, I moved into my new house w/o any. :(
    Rose-thanks, I may put a few other succulents in the lower holes later.
    Helen-I'm glad you are enjoying my barnyard, I'm so sappy for a cute plant holder/pot!
    Lola-some of the native ferns are poking out of my other walls, even a bleeding heart! It does look different.
    Mom-my prickly pear is enjoying being outside. I lost my other one do to putting it on top of the fish tank, the heat from the light drew all the mositure out of it. I'm tempted to try a pp outside, maybe you should see what yours does, Tina said she'd bring another.
    Ah! Lunchtime!

  16. Hi Skeeter, I think you may wear the Saint down, after all you got him to like a gnome, just no bowling balls! I keep thinking when I see those in the second hand stores that I'll get one one day, maybe as a sub for a gazing ball! Anyhow, hot today, and I think it maybe a true first this summer!

  17. I love rock walls, nice !!!
    liebe Grüße von Kathrin

  18. This will look fantastic! I love the succulents in a rock garden. -Jackie

  19. That looks great! I love seeing rock walls planted like that.

  20. That "coop" for the hens and chicks is goin to look fabulous when they fill in! Great idea and great job!

  21. I would leave it out Mom. It does grow all the way in Canada so it should be fine there. If not, I have more, never fear.

  22. Hi Dawn, that will fill in in no time and be so sweet, and evergreen too. The rocks themselves are beautiful. Hope you find more of the twin vine, that is a lovely plant.

  23. Hi guys,
    Katrin, we have learned to love these walls, there is so many rocks in Maine, what else to do with them?
    Ellie Mae-I think it will look fantastic too! I wonder if I could fertilizer a rock wall?
    Catherine-Thanks, too few of these around, I think
    TC- you are too funny, wished I'd of thought of that!
    Frances-thanks, I love the little flower of the twin vine, it's really pretty when matted but mostly found in woodlands by scattered vines, of course.

  24. It will look great, and it will fill in before you know it. I just finished a novel about Seatle in the 1870's. It talked about Twinflowers all through the book. I was hoping to see a picture when you mentioned Twin Flowers.

    Leedra’s Photos For Fun

  25. Dawn, I saw the title and was looking for baby chicks! LOL! This is a great project and it already looks good! gail

  26. Hi Leedra-I hope before my next post to have a photo of the twin flower, it blooms twice a season, dainty pink flowers with two blooms back to back on their own stems, thus the twin flower.
    Gail- I get pretty creative with my titles, I know people who do a search come up with different blogs, imagine someone looking for the Dixie Chicks and finding us! Ha!

  27. Hens and Chicks, wonderful little plants.

  28. Iowa Gardening Woman-they are pretty sweet little plants, they take so much neglect and keep growing, thank goodness!

  29. Ha ha I thought you meant you were going to keep chickens under the deck which didnt seem very nice!! Was glad when I realised you were referring to sedums - I dont think I have heard them called that before. It should look good

  30. Perfect place for the hen and chicks! I have a little area and the slant of a small mounded bed that I have started a hen and chick collection area. Their are so many kinds out there now-or maybe I have just started to notice. Some of them are wooly, some almost viny and some in gorgeous hues. I will have to add a few more rocks though. Good luck with yours.

  31. I am pretty sure you will not be dissapointed by Hens and Chicks in this area! I hope it fills in fast!

  32. Vuejardin-Thanks!
    Patientgardener-I'm surprised you had not heard of the common name for this type of Sedum, they remind me of Hens and chicks the way they grow, don't you think?
    Beckie-Aren't the different types wonderful? I have some of the trailing kind but I'm not sure what to do with it yet.
    Rosey-I hope so too! Thanks!