- This is part one of several blogs on The Best garden features for 2019.
There were simply to many features to place in one blog. You have my wife Noela to thank for that. She turns simple ideas into great one’s.
What are the best garden features for 2019?
All gardens will look better if you have some features in them. These features will help visitors to focus on those sections of your garden you would like them to explore.
They can come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and style, and they don’t have to cost a fortune.
In this article I will show you some features and ornaments in our garden. Many of them have come from my clients when they wanted a clean up of their garden sheds, or from the local recycling center. Some have caught our eye at local garden centers and did cost us some money.
The purpose of this blog is to show you how some simple items can make a difference in your garden.
I am blessed to have a wonderful partner, who has a fantastic eye for the obscure. Often we will be at the recycling center and she will point to an item, that I would have totally overlooked, and state, that will look great in our rose garden, or herb garden, or where ever.
I have to admit that sometimes I look at it and think, you’re crazy, that will look ridiculous. Just as often, when we finally take it home, I find out I’m totally wrong. You know what us males are like, we hate being wrong.
These ladders are just the thing.
One of the most popular items in gardens today are old wooden step ladders. Our garden now has three of them.
These old ladders came from some of my older customers who wanted them gone. So I would do a big clean up for them and take the items home for Noela to peruse. No way would I take them straight to the tip without her seeing them.
I learned long ago that it is a lot wiser to let her have the final judgment on an item. Will it be taken away to oblivion , or can it be reused in ours, or another persons garden.
Her eye for detail is a lot more efficient than mine.
So back to the ladders.
Ladder Number 1.
The first ladder was placed in our Rose garden. It had several purposes. Not only was it put there to attract one’s attention to a beautiful climbing Rose, in this case it was also helping to hold the rose up.
The climber that needed this support was our gorgeous ‘Pierre de Ronsard’ .
This particular plant was growing rapidly and was absolutely loaded with beautiful pink flowers as you can see by the attached photo
I was concerned that the ladder was far to big and wouldn’t look good in this particular spot. I was wrong again. Once placed there, and secured, it looked great.
Noela went a step further with this ladder (excuse the pun), and placed pot plants on the steps.
The reasons for doing this were very logical.
1). It would keep the grand kids off the ladder. They might be tempted to climb it.
2). The pots would add that extra splash of color when the roses weren’t in bloom.
None of these ladders cost us any money.
Could you think of any better way to highlight a section of the garden without it costing you a fortune?
3). They would provide yet another focal point for visitors. Keeping there eyes and minds ever entertained.
Ladder Number 2.
Our federation style home was moved to the spot it now sits on many years ago. Unfortunately the only way it could fit on what is a large but narrow and long block, was to place it back the front on the site. Hence, the back of the house faces the front.
The madness around this decision was thought out many years before we bought it.
At the time it must have seemed like a great idea as the large veranda, or porch, faced the back, which gave one a fantastic view of the river. This view however is mostly obscured today by rubbish growing on other properties that sit between us and the river.
In any case.
When we purchased the property it was crying out for both maintenance and garden development. We were in our element because this is what we loved doing the most.
There were many little alcoves around the building. One of these was begging for a feature and existed very near to the back steps.
One of the smaller ladders soon became a center point in this tiny area. You will notice on the photo that Noela has filled it with other little items, such as an old watering can, old tin bucket and some hand tools.
You will also notice a little plastic watering can. This belongs to our younger grandson, who uses it when he visits, to help grandma water her plants.
This little corner looked empty and neglected before Noela came up with this great idea.
The only items that cost money were the steel garden tools that we use in our raised garden beds. The rest were free.
If you are finding it difficult to locate small items to place on your ladder than you can follow this link to my features review and choose one from the list.
Ladder Number 3.
I won’t be revealing any pictures of this ladder as it has only been placed in the center of a lawned area to protect a tree seedling we planted there.
I use this area of the garden to park my utility trailer and other equipment I use in my gardening business. We wanted a tree planted in the middle that would eventually provide shade for a future sitting area. Hopefully it will be ready when I retire in about one and a half years time (or 14 months 14 days from the writing of this article to be precise).
Noela was determined that the little tree should be protected from possible damage by me, so she insisted we place an old spare ladder we had stored under our house over the top of it. It looks rather strange but does the job.
I doubt I would have run over the seedling, I think Noela was worrying for nothing. Or was she?
A Bicycle or Two: A Feature, or a quick escape!
Noela always wanted a bicycle in our garden. You know, one of those old one’s painted either pink or white.
One day I was cleaning a yard for some older friends when I noticed two old, or should I say very old, bicycles leaning up against the side fence. I had never seen these bikes in their yard before so I asked about them. They informed me that they were throwing them out.
I pounced on this opportunity and told them I would be happy to take them off there hands, for a reasonable amount of money. They told me that they didn’t want any money and could I just take them.
They informed me that they were about to take them to our local recycling center and that if I were to remove them from their yard they would be ever grateful. I was ecstatic.
I wasn’t sure what Noela would do with the bicycles but I was positive she would be rapt to get not one, but two great old bikes.
Bicycle Number 1.
When I got home and took the bikes off the trailer my wife was already outside waiting, as if she anticipated that I had a surprise for her. Her eyes lit up immediately she saw the bikes.
That very afternoon she managed to place the bike against our shed and starting adding smaller features on and around it. She informed me that the whole picture would look a lot better once the plants had grown to a reasonable size.
From where I stood it looked pretty good already.
She simply leaned it against the shed, placed pots of color around it, and added some seedlings in a basket on the front near the handle bars.
Another dead spot now looks fantastic.
There is a little way to go before the flowers cascade down the handle bars and the little rose on the right grows over the top, but I think you can imagine what it will look like.
Bicycle Number 2.
This bike has some way to go before it can be totally accepted as a good garden feature. But at this early stage I trust Noela and what she is trying to achieve.
Apparently a stephanotis vine will be planted behind it, grow up the trellis (which is an old bed base, she loves using these), and fall slightly over the bike.
The Common name of this plant is ‘Bridal Veil’, because of its cascading, highly perfumed flowers that are often used in wedding bouquets.
But just a word of warning, if you should decide to use this flower in a wedding situation, make sure the bride isn’t allergic to the perfume or pollen.
Other plants will also be placed in containers around the bike.
I wanted you to see this project at its very early stage to understand how easy it is to put together.
You could paint the bike if you wish, but I know that Noela prefers the natural color in came in.
So far this little area has cost us next to nothing. We paid $5 for the bed base at a recycling center, and as I said above, the bike was free.
Some features cost Money.
Not all garden ornaments or features come for free. Every now and than one hits your eye that you simply need to purchase for that special spot in the garden. This is exactly what happened to us one day when we visited a garden center looking for plants.
We were wandering around the center when Noela noticed the ‘two kids on a bench’ statue in the store. She looked at me and commented ‘I know where that will fit perfectly’ she said.
I looked a bit dumb founded. I’m not really a statue sort of person but had to admit that this one looked rather cute.
I asked her where she wanted to place it, she told me to trust her and it would be a surprise.
When we got it home I was told to take it to the Poinciana tree.
This tree is located in our back garden. and is surrounded by bromeliads and ferns.
When I put it where she told me to I had to admit it looked fantastic.
Placing these sorts of features strategically within the garden helps to draw the visitors eyes to new spots that they might otherwise have missed.
As I have mentioned in other blogs. It helps the garden to become an adventure for visitors.
You must admit. They do look rather cute.
Just one more Necessary feature.
I simply had to add one more feature for today. This is a very necessary ornament in any garden setting.
Like most gardens, as ours matures, and the trees, shrubs and plants grow, it becomes an attractant to animals and birds. We have a number of different finch species, along with other birds, that not only visit out garden but choose it to build their nests and raise their young.
It is important that you provide a source of water for these little birds if you want them to stay. They love the security of shrubs and flowers so make sure you partially hide the feature from the prying eyes of predators.
Our garden encompasses approximately and acre of land (or approximately 4,000 square mtrs) so we have a number of bird baths situated throughout it.
This particular one was purchased from a local source and is made of concrete. It’s a rather heavy material but this means there’s little chance of it being knocked over.
Notice how it is well hidden within the garden shrubbery. The little birds in particular should feel very safe in this setting.
There are numerous other ways you can provide water for animals and birds. Maybe you could build a small pond. or purchase a small waterfall feature.
==> If you would like to check out some more garden features, just click on this link<==
Hopefully what I’ve shown you on my blog today will inspire you to check if your garden needs some features added. Sometimes it only takes a small amount of imagination.
Remember to return to my website in the near future when I will reveal some further interesting features that my ever imaginative wife Noela has added to our garden. They will surprise you.
In the meantime check out your local recycling center for ideas.
You may also like to check out some ornaments you can purchase for your garden by following this link.
I hope you enjoyed my article on the best garden features for 2019 part 1. Part 2 will arrive shortly.
I always appreciate comments. Or maybe you would like to tell me about your garden features. You can either leave a comment below, or for a more private conversation, you can contact me on the ‘Contact Us’ button at the top of the web page.
Happy Gardening. Jim