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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Plant Stand Spring Refresh

Sunday, April 5, 2015

When Spring arrives, two things always 
drive my thoughts and actions. 
Not a year goes by that 
both of these things do not happen. 
Some years better than others. 
It's not like I write them down in my planner to do 
so I don't forget them. 
No, these two things are yearly rituals, 
part of the ebb and flow of my life.  

No way around them. 

Spring cleaning 
planting flowers 

Planting flowers is more fun than cleaning, 
but cleaning is satisfying when a cleaning project is finished. 
One place where these two activities converge is 
the plant shelf in the sunspace. 

A Spring refresh for the plant shelves 
is both satisfying and fun. 

Everything comes off the shelves 
so the shelves can be washed as well as all of the contents. 

Then comes the fun part,  
arranging things and adding herbs and flowers 
to brighten the kitchen and to welcome Spring sunshine. 

A quick tour surrounding the plant shelves... 

This is the view from the entry of our house. 
The stand is one of the first things everyone sees as they enter. 

The stand after this year's Spring refresh 
has live plants on every level.  

Most of the year an ivy wreath sits on the top shelf. 
At Christmas time, the ivy is replaced. 
Some years with a poinsettia, 
but last year it was a fresh boxwood wreath. 

Sitting at an angle the shelf has one foot in the kitchen 
and one foot in the living room making it visible in both rooms. 
Or should I have said, two feet in the kitchen 
and two feet in the living room?

The bookcase used as a potting shelf sits next to the metal plant shelves
 which makes it easy to reach potting tools. 

My favorite blue-checked chair sits on the other side of the plant shelf 
which helps me keep a close eye on when the plants need watering. 

A common theme for the shelves is birds. 
Signs, houses, and tins collected over the years 
keep reappearing, sometimes in different places. 

Lavender plants are among my favorite plants each Spring. 
The lilac twine comes in handy all around the house and garden. 

Replacing lavender plants is a yearly job. 
The Texas heat does them in every year. 

The nest sign hides the plastic water spray bottle 
used to mist plants and to chase cats off the table. 
Plastic, a needed evil. 
Cats on tables, an unneeded evil. 
I love my cats, but do not love everything they do. 

 Ivy wreaths are more plants that I have to replace on a regular basis. 
Spider mites kill them. 

Shades of blue and lavender... 
colors usually seen every year on the plant stand. 

Lobelia bedding plants are annual flowers that I plant every Spring. 
I cannot remember for certain when I first discovered lobelias, 
but I think I saw them for the first time in hanging baskets 
on street lamps in Victoria, Canada, 
far away and many years ago. 

Each year I watch for the first lobelia plants at the nurseries. 
That's one of the signs of Spring for me. 

❀ ❀ 
      1. Clean and make-over the closet in the master bathroom. Everything in its place.  √ 
      2. Plant shelf Spring refresh.  
      3. Plant lobelias in pots on the deck.  
      4. Clean the mudroom and install new shelves - Begun, but not finished  
      5. The list is a lot longer, but would be discouraging for me to see it all.

            ❀ ❀ 

            What are your yearly rituals? 
            How is your list of accomplishing them coming? 

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