Let Them Eat Cake! ~ Or How To Make a Faux Flower Cake from Scratch

Here’s a fun project to make using leftover florals you may have in your craft stash! For an upcoming blog hop, I needed a “cake” to finish off the look I was creating with some glass cake domes… Then I thought of this unfinished 3/4 “cake” that has been in my Craft Room for quite some time…

Looks a bit like PacMan… ;)’

Craft items you will need:

  • (3) 1″ tall round foam “cakes”
  • hot glue and glue gun
  • kitchen bread knife to cut out “cake piece”
  • various leftover faux flower heads and greenery
  • anything else you want to use to decorate your cake!

This is a perfect craft to do while watching t.v.! An ironing board makes a perfect table as it can raise up or down as needed.

How to make your Flower Cake:

Begin with hot glueing the three foam cakes together, let cool. Using a bread knife, cut out a “piece” of cake; this can be decorated to go together, too!

Using leftover sheet moss, cut strips to create the “cake” portions of your decorated Flower Cake.

Watch for burnt fingers… This is the sticky, messy bit but it’s worth the effort!

Hot glue those over the exterior seams of the glued cake hiding the cake seams (or wherever you’d like to place them, of course). Can also use different florals for a whole different effect.

This is a perfect project to get creative with!

Pull off flower heads as needed and begin hot glueing those onto the cake as “frosting.”

The pretty part!!!

Keep adding whatever flower heads you’d like to your Flower Cake ~ you could make a whole series of cake pieces using different florals!

Kinda like those really tall rainbow cakes which are popular for children’s parties. (You’ll need more “cake stacks” to make one of those!) Older children can make these cakes or even smaller pre-cut “cupcakes” at birthday parties as a fun craft during their birthday party. Flower Cupcakes would be fun take-home gifts for each guest!

*** Children as young as 5 years could do this with a parent’s help, keeping a bowl of cold water nearby for sticky glue on fingers. We did this at school this year for a Christmas project and the students enjoyed using hot glue and very good (and fast!) about using the cold water.

Decorate the inside of your cake similarly to the outside ~ I used more sheet moss here to look more like a real “cake” and put small white Queen Anne’s Lace flowerheads in between for the frosting. :)’

If you run out of small white florals like me, don’t fret. Finish after your next trip to the craft store! No worries…

Add on any pretty leaves and flower heads to the top and your Flower Cake is done!!!

Bon appetit, mes amis!

Barb ūüôā


Travels Out West ~ A Photo Essay from Last Year’s Cali Trip

Before spring gets away… I have held these photographs for over a year now just waiting to share them with you. By the time I was ready to share them last year, it was summertime. So,¬† they waited for this year to share that 3800 mile round-trip out west as we moved all our household good to Texas from California.¬†

Let’s enjoy some glorious wildflowers and garden beauties!…

By the time I was ready to share them last year, it was summertime and the timing was gone. This year however it is the perfect time to share these wildflower beauties! With staying home we all need our armchair travels so please¬†do! download these photos to your heart’s content and put them on your computer’s slideshow and as save screens. I want you to enjoy them…

Texas’ state flower is the blue lupine or bluebonnet but these lupine are in the high desert of Arizona.

The lead photo is of some fiery orange and yellow lantana in flowerbed at Costco or at the hotel I stayed at last March, if memory serves. Always pretty, lantana blooms from early spring through summer and on into fall. It’s a lovely perennial and comes in white, this orange and also some lovely purple hues. It is perfect tucked into a pot (or a flowerbed) where it can drape itself over the side and cascade downward. Here is a variety seen standing tall.

This photograph and the second one above share these yellow daisies (Coreopsis) growing alongside a freeway exit ramp to a rest area in New Mexico or Arizona. The wildflowers along Highway 10 were just perfect as I was traveling to California over the March 2nd-4th, 2019 weekend into Monday.

On that Saturday I made it to El Paso about 12 hours from our home. That Sunday it was about 2 o’clock in the afternoon and I was on Highway 20 heading down out of New Mexico into Arizona and I gasped at the drifts of bluebonnets and yellow Coreopsis…


They were dotted here and there on these low hillsides ~ very pretty! I remember wishing I had a really long lens for my Canon so I could shoot differently but get close-ups along the hills.

Pullouts dot the one lane roadsides so it is easy to just pull off the highway into these wide areas to safely get out and snap photos galore!

These are a bit jumbled and jump back and forth from the pullout and the one rest stop exit, but they are always beautiful!!! ūüíõ

These saguaro and other tall cacti are part of a cactus garden right off the highway (probably HW 10 heading to Arizona when I was driving back from California). 

Western deserts are garden zones 11 and 12 (really hot and dry). Because there was a lot of rain last winter and very early spring (late January and February), this  made for spectacular greenery out in the desert in March. 

Another rest area found me following a group of cyclists out on a spring ride. Some had panniers on their bicycles (front and/or rear bags carrying gear for camping, usually) so they may have been riding cross-country over spring break.

Definitely New Mexico!

This large sculpture of a roadrunner sits up on a rock at a rest stop looking down on Las Cruces, New Mexico. I just looked this up and did you know this sculpture is made of trash??! Yes! Here is a cool little ditty from Trip Advisor about the Roadrunner of Las Cruces.

I didn’t get that close and personal with Mr. Roadrunner as I wanted to get on the road and be home by dark that Saturday evening a week after I had started. It was 5 or 6am when I shot these photographs. The little hare was startled by my presence but soon went back to nibbling when he found out I just wanted to visit with him, not harm him.¬†

Untouched photo and the light as it was…
Here I was on my way into the restrooms to wash up before driving onward. 

Here is when I came out looking out over the city of Las Cruces. The Organ mountain range is here in the Las Cruces area of NM and these may be the West Potrillo Mountains. I googled this… ūüėČ

Heading home…¬†

One quick shot of the car in the early morning sunlight, full to the brim with portraits, paintings, engine oil, paints, cleaning fluids and the like. Oh, and my suitcase, blanket and a couple of coats. It was 30 degrees F. that morning and I was sooo glad I brought those coats and blanket to wrap around me! I also had a beanie and wool socks, longtime winter Boy Scout camper that I am!!!

Enjoy your springtime,

An Irish Spring…

March is right around the corner and with it St. Patrick’s Day is just about here, too. So I thought I’d bring out a little green decor in honor of many of our Irish and Scottish heritages…

The lovely roses which my husband gave me in mid-February and then graced our Valentine’s tea table¬†are still surviving. After the original photographs were taken, these vermillion beauties replaced the pink roses and have lasted for two weeks.

I changed their water every few days and recut their stems as I’ve always heard should be done and this simple step kept them fresh and blooming.

The last cutting brought several of the roses down to just the right size for a teapot…

This little Irish Miss steps lively around the coffee table in her shamrock print dress. The Art Deco teapot found 15 years ago in England enjoys coming out of the cupboard to hold its rosy bouquet next to her! 

Across the way her friend Mr. B. Rabbit hops among his own patch of roses…

What fun to bring out the green and some shamrocks to celebrate this coming season of spring!

Happy March and St. Patty’s Day,¬†

Out and About ~ The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Good day to y’all,¬†Two weeks ago my daughter and I took a trip over to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center near her apartment home in Austin, Texas.

This is a bit long with many wonderful garden photographs for you… Grab a cup of coffee or tea and let’s tour the early summertime gardens and see what’s growing!

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is now located in western Austin, Texas off the Mopac Parkway on 500+ acres of property which the late President and Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson donated to the University of Texas at Austin. Originally located in east Austin, the center was moved to its current location in 1995.  

When President Johnson and the former First Lady served in the White House, Mrs. Johnson saw developers scooping up land and destroying much of the indigenous habitat available to Austin’s dwindling wildlife.

Alarmed, she felt called to action.

Among the many bills President Johnson presented to and were passed by Congress during his time in office were those to protect America’s wildlife and the creation of a number of new national parks. President Johnson also signed the Highway Beautification Act into law, and Lady Bird helped by lobbying Texas officials promoting seeding Texas’ highways with native wildflowers.¬†

Inside the LBJ Wildflower Center’s main entrance courtyard. Mrs. Johnson asked that native plants be used as well as some way of promoting the history of the peoples who lived or moved into the area. Stonework on each building represents the Mexican, French, Spanish and German settlers who came to South Texas and the type of stone each favored when building their offices and homes.
An aqueduct runs along the top of the entry archway carrying
rainwater to one of fourteen cisterns (the grey round tower
at the far end) collecting this precious resource. Limestone and
sandstone feature.
Later, Mrs. Johnson talked with her husband about donating some land they owned to develop a wildflower center. 

A view of water stair-stepping down from the overhead aqueduct
and into the front garden pond below, just to the left.
This wildflower center would help raise awareness about the need to preserve Texas’ unique habitats and to promote Texas’ beautiful natural flora and wildlife as a place to come and visit.

A painting of Lady Bird Johnson by Norman Rockwell with a
video playing (reflection) about Mrs. Johnson’s conservation
work and life.

Claudia Alta “Lady Bird” (Taylor) Johnson along with friend and fellow conservationist, actress Helen Hayes, championed this cause and founded The National Wildflower Research Center in 1982.¬†

Research gardens ~ divided into native plants using soils specific to each plant’s needs. These areas are designed as teaching gardens for the avid home gardener and for local school children. Most of the plants around are “to be touched.”¬† ¬†ūüôā

‚ÄúMy hope for what lies ahead in the field of landscape design ‚Ķ is not a revolution against the use of non-natives, but a resolution to educate ourselves about what has worked for Mother Nature through the ebb and flow of time and to put that knowledge to work in the planned landscapes that are everywhere a part of our lives.‚ÄĚ

Lady Bird Johnson

Late spring blue salvia (foreground), pink coneflowers, past their
prime tall coneflowers (those tall black-tipped stalks) with the
area’s natural savannah in the background.

“The University of Texas at Austin Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is the State Botanic Garden and Arboretum of Texas.” It’s mission is to “inspire the conservation of native plants through its internationally recognized sustainable gardens, education and outreach programs, research projects, and consulting work.”¬†

                                           ~ Overview, http://www.wildflower.org

A grove of Lebanon cedars which grow all over Texas but especially
in the hill country.
Amy and I arrived around 10am to the wildflower center and found that a guided tour was about to begin. Peter was our small group ‘s guide and we enjoyed a nice hour-plus walk through the inner gardens of the wildflower center.

Bright orange lantana grows just off to the left.
This first section of the inner garden is planted with all local native species bursting with blooms in each season. Each species stars during its normal bloom season with some plants flowering as spring bloomers, some later in summer and others through the late summer heat and into fall.

My forefinger got in this shot but I wanted to share the variety of species planted together ~ the spiky with the more feathery. Really pretty!

Of course I was there to gather ideas for my yard and I love the structures! One could make this large barn type structure with posts and pallet wood…

This lovely shade flower’s leaves look very similar to a couple of vines growing in our back garden. I am hopeful that this is what is growing!

Adorable small blooms on this white daisy-like fleabane!
Further along our guide shared that Mrs. Johnson wanted this area below to be a teaching garden for children. She felt strongly that everyone should have the opportunity to come and learn about Texas’ beautiful wildflowers.

Children get to learn about dirt and rock’s natural water filtration
process plus touch every plant and play in and around the water.
Naturally forming limestone rocks are fun to climb on and jump off.

Lady Bird spent a lot of time promoting better education for America’s youth and this was also true for the wildflower center. Here in the Children’s Garden everything is “hands-on” and kid friendly!¬†

Behind me (as I took this photograph) is a meadow with a small air conditioned outbuilding which is set up as a children’s library.¬†
Mrs. Johnson was adamant about having a special place where children could study and learn about the local wildlife and plants living and growing up around them.

Here in the adult’s section is the University of Texas’ research center (not open to the public) with garden beds sharing plants which do well in certain soils. These are test gardens and adult visitors (and children, of course) can see and touch these plants. One smelled like chocolate!

A quietly snapped photograph of my daughter Amy laughing at something funny our guide Peter told us ~ love this young lady!!!

Further along on another trail I tried to capture this industrious bumble bee…

Several monarch butterflies… also very fast in their pollen gathering!

One of my favorite shots… Love the deep pink of these coneflowers with their orangey centers!

Pink and yellow coreopsis (coneflowers)…

Beautiful pond back near the Children’s Garden…

The last section I have to share today is really one of the first. It is the water lily garden at the entrance to the LBJ Wildflower Center as you come inside the archway.

My daughter saw the little striped water snake which lives in the pond as we came around the front. I think our guide said its name is Archie or Harry. For a snake, it was pretty cute and you can just see his little eyes looking out from his head in this next photo…

Can you spy him in the middle left?? He was curious about us as much as we wanted to see him.

The right hand side of the pond boasts white-blooming water lilies whereas the yellow-bloomers float on the left side. 

Did you know that when water lilies are planted they are put in little baskets and then placed into their shallow ledges in a pond?? I saw that recently when I was watching some Monty Don and other British garden shows.
And the pond brings us back to the beginning of our guided tour and a graphic featuring this golden beauty to share…

Thank you for coming along on this garden tour with me! I hope you’ve enjoyed it and will share with your friends.

I’ve traveled to other places this year but haven’t quite got around to sharing them with you so I will be sharing those soon.¬† A few of the neat places I visited are in New Mexico and Arizona plus a local garden here where I live in Denton, Texas.¬†

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Blessings to you and happy gardening,

Out and About ~ Neighboring Gardens + Upcoming Visits

Just a¬†¬†little out and about today and a mini tour of our neighbor’s side garden…

Planted  where we can easily see the garden beds from our kitchen window, this garden sits between our two houses and is lovely to look at throughout the day.  Two long flower beds have changed flowers like the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace ~ with fanfare and applause!

Earlier at Easter time several types of lilies were in bloom. Now just the summer yellow lily is still flowering but it has some companions who have since sprung up! These feathery fronds with blue-topped tips co-mingle in this front flowerbed. 

Since I am still learning about plants which bloom in Texas and perhaps this is a “nepeta?”¬†

Not sure but if it is then it takes the summer heat and humidity! Would be good in our yard…

Aren’t these blue beauties pretty as they bob in the
windy late afternoon sunshine?
I haven’t been to any big gardens this year unlike when I visited
the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens a couple of years ago with former neighbors from Wagon Master RV Park.

Or the Japanese garden, also there.

Or the incredible rose garden of the Biltmore Estate…

And I need to remedy this soon! I have been spending way too much time at home but next week I’ll be heading down to visit our daughter for a belated birthday visit (her birthday is today, actually).¬†

More of our neighbor’s front bed in the late twilight…

I should be able to persuade her to come with me to visit a couple if only for short visits…

Like the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center  or this public garden called the Sunshine Community Gardens.

Until then… A short visit to the neighbor’s will have to do.

Happy gardening,

Garden Shows to Watch and My Own Petite Jardin

This week as I have been thinking much about our new gardens what I’d like to plant and how to do all this, I have been drawn to gardens old and new…

                      Watch Rome. Episode 1 of Season 1.

Netflix has given me a wealth of programs to study and recently this one was recommended for me: Monty Don’s Italian Gardens. Monty begins his tour of Italian gardens in Rome with a study of classical Renaissance gardens. The series moves through the ages since the 15th century with gardens originally created by different Catholic cardinals all competing hopefully to be chosen as the future pope ~ their gardens created to impress and show their wealth and ability to rule the Catholic church.

As the series goes on, Monty shares how styles of gardens have changed and I am up to the Romantic garden style ending in episode 3.

Monty Don's French Gardens

He tours around a few properties on a Marconi bicycle which I found charming and the gardens are absolutely stunning! Do look up this series and afterwards check out Monty Don’s French Gardens (which is where I will head next!).

Image result for a little chaos
A Little Chaos ~ Also seen this week twice as I absolutely fell in-love with this story about a widow who is bestowed with the gift of gardening. This film from 2014 stars Kate Winslet and Alan Rickman plus features the every funny Stanley Tucci as the brother of France’s Sun King Louis Dieudonn√©, Louis XIV. 

As Sabine De Barra, Winslet is wonderfully understated and humble working in a time when very few women held jobs let alone one as out in the public as a landscape artist. Very good film and I highly recommend it!

Sceptre d’Isle blooming in all its glory.
Then of course I have been over to the David Austin Roses website as I wanted to study which roses would work as climbers on our south wall which is all brick but would look fantastic with an enormous rose climbing its walls! 

Sceptre d’Isle is a rose I had back at our last home in California and I am so glad I bought another here for our Texas garden! It is loving its new home and looks stunning in its pot.

These pictures don’t do it justice and I need to find a better spot for it where it can really shine but this year is its second or third year planted and it is blooming madly and I shared a couple of pics on my Instagram.

It is absolutely loving its normal 5 hours of sunlight but being shaded from the really hot afternoon sun.  This area where I was thinking of planting it and the other roses is just under our bedroom window and two very large oak trees provide lovely afternoon shade.

The iris having been blooming too and all seem to be a yellow with some brown bits ~ pretty and soft with their pale yellow blooms.

We need some defined pathways and this past weekend Mr. Ethereal and I went to a friend’s open house party ~ check out his lovely backyard walkway and the sweet Texas paver!

Love love love brick pathways!
And I am thinking about a semi-circular stacked stone small planter wall for the roses and a matching one around the first oak tree, which will then be underplanted with some of these iris and some vining plants. Love these that Yoda and I found out locally on our weekend walkabout.
*Here’s a link to a cement pathway I laid out at our last house (this was the redo after fixing the pool equipment).

But right now it’s all about removing baby oak trees… They are everywhere in back and outfront! 

Planted either by the local squirrels (whom I love anyway!) or buried by the massive water gushing off the roof eaves during storms (hence the mud splatters here and there) we are working on drainage and gutter fixing next.

So I leave this post as it is ~ a bit mud spattered but real life.

Coming up next is Share Your Style so stop back over to link up and to find some inspiration!

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A bient√īt,

Short and Sweet ~ A Simple + Quick Vignette Using a Statue

Want to create¬†¬†a quick and easy decor vignette but you’re not quite sure what to do for a little refresh?
Here are a couple of quick + simple ideas you can do
to create a lovely new display and update your
home decor…

Welcome everyone!  If you are new here I am Barbara and I am happy you are here ~ welcome!!!
As part of today’s Short and Sweet¬†hop¬†hosted by Benita of Chasing Quaintness we are excited to bring you some quick ideas you can do in your home. Thank you Benita for being our gracious host!

For my post today I thought I’d share how to use a small statue in your home decor…

Depending upon your season start with a favorite statue you may have ~ a bust of an angel or a patriotic figure from history, perhaps.  If you find a vintage angel no longer used at a church that would be a fun piece to use in your decor too.

In this Christmas shot I created angel wings from a bird ornament I bought specifically for this project as I was decorating with mostly all white this particular holiday season.

Image result for charles faudree home decor napoleon bonaparte statue

I love small busts and fell in love with a Napoleon Bonaparte statue which the designer and author Charles Faudr√©e used in his country homes’ decor.
I had seen it a number of years ago in one of his books that I have in my library collection. When I spied my little maiden in a local thrift shop I grabbed her and ran!

A Valentine’s post from a year ago…

Statues add that je ne sais quoi quality and aire to a room which always looks rich and fancy. We may not be wealthy but we can add a little fanciness to our decor for not much money. My Grinam Niam bust is a copy but I love her just the same as if she were the genuine thing!

A little photo taken with my iPhone 7.

Add in a candle or two and decorate your little statue with your favorite jewelry or strands of pearls. Use a bookmark pinned around your statue’s neck or draped on her head like a headband then place a small pedestal or vintage piece of lace underneath.

Finish your look with a vase or display of dried flowers and you have a quick and easy vignette to grace a window or table anywhere in your home. Simple + quick to do!

Thank you for stopping by today

Please follow the links here to see what all these lovely ladies are sharing today as part of their
Short and Sweet posts.Thank you again to Benita for putting this
all together!

A bient√īt,

A Soft Romantic Thanksgiving Tablescape…

Thanksgiving  is a lovely time every year to spend celebrating the day with our families and friends.
 This year we are blessed that our daughter will be flying up from Austin for a few days to spend the holiday with us.
We have so much to be thankful this year and on this happy note I’ve set out to create an ethereal romantic table styling to share with y’all…

courtesy of Courtney Allison
This is my inspiration
A photograph I happened upon while out visiting another blogger led me to an older photograph created by my friend Courtney Allison for her blog French Country Cottage a few years ago.
I just love this gathering of storybook pumpkins and roses and you absolutely must stop by and see the rest of her photographs.
Simply stunning!

Courtney recently published her first home decor book titled French Country Cottage¬†and if you haven’t ordered her new book yet you’ll love it when it arrives!¬†
{hope that links works for you.}

A lot in common
We have a lot in common as I like soft tablescapes roses and chandeliers as Courtney does, so today I thought I’d share the makings of an easy-to-create Thanksgiving table setting you can use for your own holiday table.

The loveliest pink roses with green outer leaves… sigh!¬† Very similar to Eden roses found at Heirloom Roses.com.
Setting the scene
Pick out one of your prettiest vintage embroidered linen tablecloths and lay it katycorner across your table ~ almost as a runner ~  then add in a vase of your favorite flowers.  
These store bought pink roses with just a hint of green in the outer leaves grace our table this time.

Use a beautiful vase for displaying your bouquet then
begin surrounding your vase with softly colored
mini pumpkins and sprinkling in a few larger
Cinderella pumpkins for added oomph.

Pretty place settings
Bring out your most romantic china pieces placing them atop a woven grass placemat.
This gives such a nice contrast of textures to your  Thanksgiving table.
Next with the addition of some pretty silver tucked into a floral napkin ring along with a cute checked napkin you’ll have a table set to inspire.
Pretty. Romantic. Ethereal.

Here is  a list where you can pick up these same or similar items to help you recreate this table styling:

buffalo checked napkins 
woven braided placemats
vintage silver water pitcher
vintage silverplate flatware
crystal stemware

This is not a sponsored post ~ just sharing links I think you’ll love.¬†

So what are you doing for Thanksgiving?
Having anyone special coming over to
share the meal?¬† Hope so.¬† ūüôā

This little gold pheasant or quail I found last year at a local thrift shop and I think this little feathered friend adds a nice gilded touch¬†to the tablescape…

As an added bonus here is another table styling I created using the same pumpkins and place settings just moved to a table pour deux.

I’ll share more on that next week.

Do stop by  again tomorrow to find out more about the little craft project you see here on the table.
A hint?
See those pumpkins… they aren’t all real.

Also ~ if you enjoy these posts, please consider following me to receive future offerings ~ all the links are on the sidebar.
I appreciate you!
And feel free to pin and share, always.

Sharing with
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage
Thursday Favorite Things ~ Follow the Yellow Brick Home
Sweet Inspiration ~ The Boondock’s Blog
Waste Not Wednesday ~ Raggedy Bits
Dishing It and Digging It ~ Rustic and Refined
Hearth and Soul ~ April J. Harris
Waste Not Wednesday ~ Faeries and Fauna

Hugs and blessings,

Summer Roses and Structures That Support Them

Regal roses…
The flower queen of the garden with hundreds of varieties
and a pedigree dating back 35 million years to the
oldest rose fossils, structures to support them came about
as an off-shoot to growing fruits and vegetables
in ancient times.

Today these structures continue to add support
but also their beauty and no where is this
so true as in the rose garden…

The rose  is the quintessential flower of any formal or cottage garden and as such we want to showcase these beauties
in the best way possible.
We do this with a variety of structural supports such as large
arbors as seen in the photograph above.


I shot this massive four-hoop arbor at the Biltmore rose gardens
last fall and went inside it to “measure” as best I could
how big each of these really are.
Each arbor was approximately 8′ wide by 8 – 10′ tall and
each was wired to its neighbor, four in all.
Impressionist painter Oscar-Claude Monet made these arbors famous through his paintings and gardeners have been
applauding their supporting roles in the garden ever since.

Often climbing roses need some support as they do not cling to walls and structures like other climbing vines do as they bear
only spines and no winding tendrils.
Summertime is a good time to access your garden’s¬†needs
to see where a new support might be needed to hold up our
beloved roses and climbing vines.
Creating a plan to restructure the garden by adding a pergola here or an arbor there will give your garden added height and added
beauty in addition to offering roses the support they need.

A lovely backyard pergola or patio cover ~ photo taken at my friends¬†Cindy and Bob Ellis’ garden.


Pergolas or patio covers are usually beamed open ceiling structures often with lattice or shade cloth on top to help filter the sun.
They can be free-standing structures but are often built against a house or building for extra support in the high winds.

Pergolas are perfect for tying-in monster climbing rose canes
as they are built to take the weight of canes as they mature.
Wisteria is another climber that especially needs a solid structure
to support the future weight of its canes as it tends to collapse arbors and other supports that are too light to carry
its eventual weight.

Trellises and Towers

Trellises are smaller light-weight structures often made from
wood, wrought iron, aluminum or woven caning from
bamboo or tree saplings.
They are perfect for leaning up against walls in a garden
and growing smaller roses up against their frames
to add interest and light support.

I love small towers too as they can be added into a large rose pot
to create a mini arbor.
This type of trellis was really popular during the Victorian and Edwardian era when tea roses and climbing roses with smaller
4′ – 6′ canes were first introduced with their
repeat flowering abilities.

Other supports

PVC pipes connected together to create towers are great for¬†their ability to be strong supports for roses¬†tall vegetables and small trees.¬† Small 1″ x 2″ boxes nailed or screwed together are make great light-weight square support structures in the garden.

Sometimes even a series of eye bolts screwed into a cement garden
wall and strung with wire or jute twine horizontally across from eyelet to eyelet can create a lovely support to espalier a rose bush
and especially fruit trees.

In a small garden espalier trees against a wall gives the small garden height but also allows the gardener to have a tree
that otherwise wouldn’t fit in a small space.
Espalier takes specific branches of a tree and runs them horizontally tied in along wires much like grapes are
out in the field.

Here is a young tree at Magnolia Market formed into an espalier showing many limbs removed.
The branches that won’t fit into the espalier are removed
and only those that grow in the preferred direction
are kept ~ I’ve seen photographs of trees also run on
the diagonal and they look spectacular and elegant
when a number of small trees are set out
along a wall!

Here is a small arbor made from young saplings wound
around each other and tied with jute in the center.
A company sells these to Chip and Joanna Gaines
to use in their gardens in Waco, Texas.

Here is another one of the large arbors at Biltmore Estate.
When these roses are blooming in summer and the
days heat up I can imagine that walking under these
arbors would be a scent-filled cooling delight!
Lovely roses at dusk…

One or two rose bushes were planted around each of the arbors’ “corners”¬†which I found very interesting.
I imagine that is to get the fullness needed to make the
arbor the most beautiful when in bloom.
Plus the intertwining rose canes create a criss-cross support
as they are twined together overhead from one side
to the opposite.

Some of the David Austin roses blooming madly in the early cool October evening.
Just a few last rose blooms as this post closes…
So if you haven’t tried adding some structures to your
garden then consider these ideas.
Who knows ~ your garden might be the
next Giverny!

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Thursday Favorite Things
Feathered Nest Friday
Sweet Inspiration

√† bient√īt,

Spring Tablescapes ~ A Tulip Tea

Last week’s trip  to the Texas Tulip Farm was a
step back in time and also an inspiration to redecorate
a bit and share a new way to set your tea table…

I love redecorating  the window every couple of weeks
and adding the bouquet of candy striped tulips to the
windowscape really inspired me to get creative!
The striping on these ruffled tulips and the deep pink color
spoke to me saying, “Bring out the pink transferware!”
I think this is my absolute favorite photograph from
this day’s photoshoot ~ I love the toile like bowl set on a
stand I rescued from when we were cleaning out a
closet at the Odd Fellows and Rebekah’s hall.
Plus I love bringing out the teapot with its bulbous
shaped bottom and the little creamer which mimics
that shape.
Kinda like those tulip bulbs I pulled up when picking
these tulips!
There’s something about tulips and playing with decor
that just really says springtime to me!
When I was taking these photos it was such a pretty
spring day outside.
For this step back in time tulip tea add some decorating
accessories that look antique or vintage to your
tablesetting along with your china pieces.
Here I’ve used a vintage white ironstone sugar bowl with
light pink faux roses and a couple of other ironstone
pitchers and one of my “Girls” to add to the
vintage feel.
I also added in the little Shabby Chic mugs I used in a
bridal shower tea at our California camp host site ~
a Target find from a couple of years ago.
Bringing¬†in the little “Annette” sugar bowl by¬†Theodore Haviland¬†keeps the¬†J. Broadhurst “Constable Series:
Bicentennial 1776-1976 set from getting
a little too twee.
I love layering china for each course during a meal and this
tea setting is no different!
Little bread plates for the first course of scones are set on top
with a white ironstone salad plate next for the
salad fresh from the garden.
The vintage Limoges plate for the main course of
tea sandwiches and fruit is the final plate
and also acts as a charger.
Today‚Äôs tablesetting¬†¬†was the first time I’ve played with
creating a different napkin style and this little
napkin pocket is fun and perfect for our spring tea table
and yours.
I’ll share more from this little napkin folding book and
a lot more about creating the perfect napkin creation
for your upcoming tablesetting
in a couple of weeks.
Sharing with these link parties ~
Feathered Nest Friday
Sweet Inspiration
Thursday Favorite Things
Over the Moon
Tuesday Cuppa Tea, Titanic China ~ Antiques and Teacups
Hearth and Soul ~ April J. Harris

Happy tea to you,
Barb ūüôā