Hopalong Hollow....

Hopalong Hollow, where the Blueberries grow sweet, and the moss feels soft beneath your feet.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Roses, Iris and a Potager

I had promised myself that I would not put in ONE MORE GARDEN! I have SO many to take care of...even though I stuff them so full, they have virtually no elbow room.... little weeds squeeze in wherever they can.. The garden chores are immense and I determined NOT to make more work for myself.

With that being said, I recently dug up about 600 square feet of grass and weeds, leveled it off, rocked it off, improved the soil and planted 28 roses....in my new ROSE GARDEN.
(And people wonder why I have not finished my book yet.)

Fourteen of the roses went into this section... the others were dispersed throughout other gardens. Lest you rose gardeners think me insane, allow me to substantiate your opinion  by telling you I have never planted a rose in my life....until now.
 But good heavens, what is a cottage garden without roses??
I chose Old fashioned Fragrant Roses.. Because what is a Rose Garden without Fragrance?

They seem to be off to a good start... I hope I don't kill them all.

 When my ROSE GARDEN grows, it will be weedless..... HUH?
ON the opposite side, here, is a well established shade garden... just over that little brick walkway, it is FULL SUN ...for my roses.... you know, the ones I had never, ever planted till now.
 Since I was already REALLY dirty, I decided to put in this  dry creek on the shady side, to help with a drainage problem. ( I think I am going to have a back problem if I keep this up.)
   But it looks rather nice, I think.

Then as if it weren't enough, we added an additional 300 sq.feet to our little herb garden.

Please note fellow Americans...I just found out that the H is pronounced. I have always said  ERBS. Then I heard Martha Stewart say HERB>>>she would know, right?? And the British always say HERB< they would know... right??
Well, I have been saying Erbs for so long, it has become a real effort to pronounce the H, think I will stick with the Erbs.
  Hmmm, does that mean EIRLOOMS is pronounced HEIRLOOMS?
 Someone must clarify this. 
How do YOU pronounce Herb?
 Anyway, it is no longer JUST a HERB garden but has grown into a Potager.
In this small space of raised beds and trellis for climbers we have: 
Strawberries, 5 different heirloom tomatoes...lovely names like, Stripey Tom and Big Bertha...... cantalope, cukes, all manner of peppers and onions, purple potatoes and yams, broccoli, peas, radishes, beets, carrots and RhUBARB (just because I remember my neighbors rubarb patch as a child, and I intend on making my first rhubarb pie)

I love this comination of herbs, fruits, veges and flowers,,,, a perfectly perfect potager.  In a fairly small space. Don't get my wrong, I could have a 5 acre garden if I so desired, but why bother when you can squeeze so much in such a compact spot..

 Here the tomatoes can grow up up up.... the squashes too..... the cukes can climb to the skies. and strawberries can pour over the rocks. All the while looking wild and crazy.
Just look at these darling little peas curling round and round.

 And baby Broccoli is as cute as can be!

I popped a few roses along the edges.

  I will to watch the little garden grow right from our porch.

I usually do heavy gardening the first 2 months of Spring, and then it is all about maintenance. We were lucky having such an early Spring this year. Now, I get to sit on the porch, finish my book and be inspired by blooming gardens, buzzing bees, birdsong the about a dozen cackling chicken folk.

I also get to listen to the ear- piercing love songs of two Peabody Boys, who are calling for a fair lady Peahen.

Oh dear, there is just too much barn yard drama around here!
I hope they don't become desperate and and run away( like the Turkey Boys)  before I can make a nice love match for them
The 800 iris I planted 2 years ago are blooming all around!

 I have to say, I am pleased as punch.
 Okay,  back to the HERB question. I looked it up. In American English and French the H is not pronounced, but British English does pronounce the H.
Now tell me, How do YOU pronounce HERB? 


  1. Oh Dear Jeri, I just had the most JOYFUL stroll through your wonderful, colorful,
    lovely garden! I felt like I was transformed to England it self! Thank you for sharing! Your roses look so beautiful too
    I just can not wait for our muddy brown grownd to dry so we can finally
    get into our garden! Wow! there are actually flowers growing somewhere!

    Well as for the Herb pronounciation, I'm guessing it depends on what area that you live in. I remember using the H and people very sternly correcting me.....then living in another area and once again being repremended for not using the H! Oh Hee hee hee....so when in doubt, pronounce with a question mark, chuckle chuckle!!
    (I don't use the H in my area)

    Have a wonderful time in your garden, Blessings and Hugs, Linnie

  2. I love all the new beds you've put in and added onto. I bet your roses will grow and be beautiful. I love how you're mixing in herbs, flowers and veggies.
    I've always said erb, but I do hear Martha saying herb. I think I like how herb sounds better, sounds British to me.

  3. I love every single thing about your garden, Jeri! It truly is magical, a real fairy garden and, if it were mine, I'd be out there enjoying it all at every opportunity! It's the kind of garden that really speaks to my soul...it's perfect in every way! The picture of you enjoying it all is so lovely...you look so calm and tranquil and dreamy. Your beautiful blue dress matches the blue irises in your garde and your gorgeous peacocks, perfectly!

    I will be back to visit this post often!!!

  4. OH my, now I don't want to go to work on my day off, I want to sit and enjoy YOUR garden even more. How gorgeous, I am extremely jealous!!! We pronounce it hERB. yes just like the way I typed it, the h is there but because of the way it sounds sometimes it just gets lost in saying it unless you really concentrate on pronouncing it. I have to go to work so I can only say one more thing.......OMG you have peacocks too!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I need to move!!!

  5. OH DEAREST YOU ARE STUNNING...look at that flowing hair in the wind. YOU HAVE CONFIRMED IT FOR ME. I am growing my hair out. YEs. I have been saying this for years but I have worn this short style long enough and my tresses are still raven black with a small suggestion of gray at the temples...why not.....I am going to do it 'cause you are stunning and I can be too, darn it!!!! NOW, for this illustrious space you have created. WOW. YOU ARE SOMETHING ELSE MY DEAR....the work, the beauty, the animals, THE BOOK! You are amazing and I so wish I could meet you! THE PEABODY BOYS ARE RECKLESS! They are going to be calling out until the right PEAHEN COMES A CALLING! Put on your ear plugs 'cause i have heard these gentleman callers myself and they are LOUD! We have a lot of shenanigans going on in our urban garden..the rabbits are doing their LOVE DANCE and the cardinals are fighting over territory. WHO WILL WIN? The plot thickens and I am watching from my window! Now for the word HERB. Hmmmmm....tricky. I am a French speaker, so we do NOT pronounce the /h/ aspirate.....but then the French and the English don't agree on too much!!!! I will go with Martha's version 'cause it just sounds cool.


  6. Herbs with an H my dear lovely Friend. I love that picture of you and love all your gardens and flowers and critters. Your dry bed is absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing your peaceful bit of paradise. I always come away from visiting here, inspired and encouraged. What a delight is must be to live in your surroundings.

    Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

  7. What a magical, beautiful garden you have - I am totally transfixed by the photographs. It's a paradise and I would never want to leave! Your peacocks are very handsome indeed...hope you find them a beautiful lady soon!

    In South Africa we pronounce the H!! HERB!

  8. I speak Arkan-ese so it's urb! You live in Heaven, those gardens are so beautiful. I love the selection of plants, all my favorites! Rhubarb has a lovely flavor, all tart and spring like, perfect paired with strawberries in a pie or cobbler. Favorite rhubarb recipes from a Lancaster County, PA cookbook...

  9. Way to go on cutting back on the gardening Jeri. LOL!And I thought I planted a lot of roses this spring when I added six new ones to the rose garden. LOL! We are all going to enjoy looking at your roses. The dry creek bed looks so wonderful.Looks like one of the girls was inspecting it and has approved. I am glad you straighten us out on the erb and herb thing. I found myself when talking about them to someone just saying them both like, " a erb or herb garden however you pronounce it" I covered all the bases. LOL! Have a wonderful weekend, maybe setting looking out over the garden and working on the book.

  10. Jeri,
    You sound just like us. Every year we say we are done and not going to put in anymore garden beds but we always think of more to do. A gardeners work is never done. Love all your gardens. Your dry creek is a neat idea. Great job! As for herb, the dictionary shows it pronounced both ways. I have always pronounced it erb. Stick to what you are used to since both ways are correct.

  11. oh, bountiful beauty! Our snow is still melting...
    me, i say 'erb', just the way I was brought up. A bit like 'creek', depending on what part of the country.... it is said one way or another.

  12. Huh for herb, like happy - I think we all say it that way in the UK?

    Lovely gardens Jeri - and roses are wonderful. There's a beautiful rose flowering not far from here right now, a simple, magenta bloom with the sweetest scent ever. x

  13. Your Garden is Looking so Lovely. It is so Nice to Be Outside isn't it.
    Hope this Finds you Well and Away from the severe weather!
    Hope you are Having a Wonderful Weekend!
    I say "erb" ...Silent H. But then again I am from Oregon! Lol!

  14. Marvelllous iris, roses ! Your gardens are wonderful ! (Herbs, I think, but I am not the best person for tell you the good word, I am French lol, not Américan)

    Happy 1rst May Jeri ! I send you a lucky-charm sprig of lily of the valley by the thought,

  15. Oh Jeri, thank you for popping over! Yes, seeing our faery tale dreams come to pass is an exciting thing indeed. AND I JUST LOVE THAT PICTURE OF YOU ON THE SIDEBAR HOLD FIONA! I am guessing your creatures have come to trust you so much that they allow you to hold them as such. I would LOVE TO HOLD A GOOSE!!! I adore nature and I remember going to the Minnesota State Fair a couple of years ago, here in St. Paul. What a feast of fun. I milked a goat and got a blue ribbon! But I pulled too hard and she almost kicked me! SHEESH! I am a city woman....then I saw the LIPIZZANER HORSES DO THE CHA CHA!!! I wanted to jump on one and trot about. I will then live vicariously through my dreams and maybe even write about it...but you have your world and it is so charming. Enjoy your garden dearest; I am going outside to set out some garden urns and look for the bunnies. Peace, Anita

  16. Dear Jeri,

    My stars, lady, 800 irises! A whole rose garden! The potager and dry creek! I'm sure your back is made of cast iron. :0) May it ever be thus! I'm sure that the roses will thrive under your loving care (feed them lots of banana peelings and egg shells).

    If we ever pass your way, we may never want to leave! I truly believe that Tasha Tudor would approve of it all.



  17. Oh my gosh, I found your blog today by way of The Raspberry Rabbits. Your artwork is beautiful and I love your blog!

  18. Why of course you would have a beautiful garden. You surround yourself with beauty.

  19. hi there, i just found you from sharon who featured your fiona with a hat and a chicken with a sweet little collar and a hat...if you hop over to my blog you will instantly know why i just had to come over. i believe we both have a hat fettish for our pets. lol...lovely blog and your gardens are beautiful. i used to read thorton wilder burgess's books when i was a child and loved them dearly. your love for animals is kin to mine. have a nice week!

  20. My goodness, Miss Jeri,
    You make this fellow Tennessee girl so very proud! Those irises are gorgeous...along with the rest of your incredible gardens! What a busy girl you have been, but there is no better feeling in the world than to gaze upon the fruits of your labor!

  21. Dear Cousin Jeri,

    Your herb, vegetable, and flower garden photographs are beautiful! My Grandmum (on the Starr side) had a huge of collection of lovely Iris. Love your dry creek meandering through your shade garden! Those Peabody Boys certainly do look like they're hoping for lady peahens, we can just hear them! Just remind them, if they do find some ladies, they will have to keep track of them as these ladies are known to run away with the Wild Turkey Boys! I should get to work making another garden and moving some of my Echinacea out of the garden of herbs, as it has taken over the back two quadrants! Ah, always another garden to start! A lot of work but the best of fun!

    Your cousins,
    Diane and daughter Sarah at the Corgyncombe Courant

  22. I love your new garden. I just picked up on your spelling of RhUBARB...clever! I just planted RhUBARB (or is it Rhubarb) for the first time this year. Can't wait until next year for strawberry/shubarb pie and stewed rhubarb on hot biscuits. Lord love a duck, I'm salivating as I speak of it!!

    Okay, I'm going to work on my own garden because you've made me feel very lazy seeing how much you've done.


    Diane in North Carolina

  23. Good evening Jeri
    You are, without a doubt the GARDEN QUEEN..
    I am in total awe here. What a beautiful garden you have created and I am so impressed with your dry creek! You should be very proud of yourself Jeri, you have done a marvelous job.
    Enjoy your week

  24. I am totally besotted by your garden, surely it is a little bit of heaven.
    My pronunciation includes the "H" since that's how the Brits pronounce it, funny isn't it how we have different ways.
    I have a new frog at the pond, he reminds me of your Hector frog :)
    So many Iris, a virtual sea of them.
    Splendid !


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