Thursday, April 4, 2013

Our Dream Garden, but only the small dream

    I've had a lot of time on my hands lately.  I lost my job, which is so great because I really wanted more time to work on my herbal tea and recycled object business.  Now I've got too much time.  That leaves a lot of room for staring out the back window and dreaming.  Thank you Grow Write Guild for encouraging this and asking me to write it down!
     I have many dreams of my garden.  Some involve more space than others.  So I don't get too crazy, I'll just stick with my dream for the space I have now.  We only started here two years ago, so it was a clean slate and it's still a work in progress.  I like to stick to the attainable dream so I don't drive myself crazy.  I'm not ready to move again yet.
     The first part of our dream involves food.  Probably the second and third part, or just about all of the parts involve food.  We love flowers, but we find we're often moving them somewhere else so a food plant can go in that spot.  Food plants have flowers too!
  So, food.  We have our vegetable beds as well as a strawberry patch, blueberry bushes, a cherry tree, a fruit cocktail tree (peach, apricot, plum, and nectarine), an apples tree (fuji, golden delicious, and gala), a marion berry, and soon schisandra berries.  In our dream, they are bigger and bear many fruits!  We want too much so that we have to invite friends and neighbors over for feasts.  And then there will be extra for canning/drying/pickling for the winter.  Last season the squirrels got fat off our peaches, our single apple blew off during Sandy (I'll take that loss over what other people lost), and we had a small snack of blueberries.

We also want to add grapes, almonds, goji and citrus in pots.   One side of the house, you'll walk through a gate under grape vines, and on the other side, schisandra vines.


     Part two also involves food.  Chickens!  Maybe ducks too!  Although I'm sure they'll end up more like pets and we will only eat the eggs.  These chickens will be running all over the yard eating the bad bugs and pooping out good plant food!  I've been dreaming of chickens or ducks for years, hopefully by the end of this summer, or next.


     Now we need a place to cook and eat this food.  The deck is built, but we need nice furniture and perhaps a bar.  The deck has gentle fans to keep mosquitos away, and repurposed sails for sun blocks and privacy screens.  An old boat is docked next to the deck and is used as a planter.  We have a slight nautical theme for this deck.  Maybe we'll have a fire pit below the deck, or a brick oven.  There's also a nice front porch with curtains and plants hanging all over.  It will be a nice place to watch the sunset.

     Since I am an herbalist and make teas, there will be many medicinal and culinary herbs growing in gardens and wherever else they might be happy.  Chamomile, echinacea, calendula, yarrow, raspberry, valerian, hops, roses, mints, basil, and a million more!  They might be vertical, or spiral, or just scattered.

     We'll have bees and all kinds of birds and butterflies fluttering around!  We can collect honey and bee pollen from our hives.  This might take a while since I first have to get over my fear of bees.
     We have a bat box, but in our dreams, bats actually live there!  We put two up there because one just wasn't big enough!
     We have a small greenhouse.  But in our dreams it is heated!  Then we won't have to lug huge pots of aloe and citrus in and out every year.
     We have rain barrels set up to help with the watering.  We might need to add some more in other places.  There will be lots of plants needing water!
     We'll have an aquaponics setup.  Maybe tilapia are in there.  Maybe ducks are swimming around.  Probably a dog will jump in at times to cool down.
     We'll have to use vertical arrangements to fit more in.
The back yard is very private with all kinds of edibles or medicinals growing everywhere, forming fences and walls.  Winding pathways guide you throughout the yard into little pockets of heaven.  It's definitely not a huge yard.  But every space will be used but not overcrowded.  Much of the building materials will be re-used or re-purposed.  Paradise on a quarter acre!


  1. It sounds lovely. I hope you get all the things you're dreaming of.

  2. I love this dream garden. I too love flowers but care more about food...I'm actually planning to sow all my extra herb seeds in the flower patches, because herbs are so pretty. And I dream of chickens! (We don't eat meat, so they'd be pretty happy chickens, at least until they were decimated by the dozens of stray and not-stray cats roaming the neighbourhood...)

  3. our dreams are pretty similar! best of luck to you!

  4. Your dream garden is quite dreamy! I love the painted rain barrel--algae prevention plus style. We just got a pair of ducks last summer and I highly endorse their entertainment value (looking forward to seeing a slug population decline this year!).

  5. I love your nautical deck! We are working on backyard oasis, our friends say it gets crazier/more fun every time they come over.

    Can't wait to watch as your dream comes to life!


  6. I agree about the food vs. flowers thing, and I like your comment that food has flowers too. :)

  7. This sounds great! I love your rain barrel. Good luck on your business. Sometimes things happen that seem bad at first, but turn out to be blessings. Hope your dream garden will be a reality too.

    Here's my dream garden... My Dream Garden


  8. I'm glad that you included the use of re-purposed materials. I didn't think of it in my dream garden post, but would love to have a pathway or patio made from re-purposed items.