Category Archives: shopping

A little something to make my mornings better


Every morning as we rush out the door to school and work, I realize that our yard is bigger than I think and needs a lot of love. So this weekend I decided to spruce it up a little. I did some weeding and raking of the leaves from last Fall. Pathetic, right? Before going to the store, I decided I would plant some things along the brick wall of the basement steps. Of course on my return, my husband kindly reminded me that we are planning on redoing the steps so I might want to rethink that plan. Once again, he was right.


So, I decided that the other perfect spot would actually be around the forsythia bush. I must say I really like it. This little corner, from the gate to the air conditioning unit, is my current project. In the past I’ve had a little bit of trouble in terms of layering plants–foreground, middle ground and background–in a meaningful way. The plants I bought today are the lower level and the forsythia the higher. Now I’ll just need to fill in behind and above the Mary Flemming, along the fence and into the corner next to the unit. This will make the walk to car in the mornings a little more bearable. I think I might be getting better at this.

New plants, left to right:

  • apricot blush, lenten rose
  • autumn sundance, azalea
  • r.l. wheeler, camellia japonica
  • daphne odora, marginata
  • mary flemming, rhododendron




The fancy garden shows make a big deal about lighting. I used to think whatever but after we put some cheap solar lights in the back, I find myself lingering by the kitchen windows whenever I walk by in the evening.

Frankly, the yard looks much better in the dark (don’t we all?) and the little lights make me think of summers spent catching lightening bugs and eating honeysuckle. So as much as I don’t like yard work, I do like the results. Ignore the leaves.

Behnke’s is a money sucking pit

Behnke Nureries is second only to Whole Foods in magically making my money disappear from my wallet. I went in the other day to grab one plant and left with eight. I’ve at least learned to buy perennials, well mostly anyway. I buy plants the same way I buy wine–the cuteness of the label.  Anyway, what I really like about Behnke’s is that they aren’t pretentious. They’re in Beltsville so pretension isn’t really an option. Even so, the staff is always nice and they don’t laugh at me. At least not to my face. And they always have sales.