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Posts Tagged ‘landscape design’

 If you are planning a new landscape design, let the designer be aware of all family pets within the household. It is generally a good idea to monitor pets while they are outside. Young pets have a tendency to be mischievous, chew, eat and dig everything in sight. Once pets have matured, it is highly unlikely they will find an interest in your outdoor shrubs, perennials, annuals, bulbs or vegetable garden plants.

Listed are several plants to keep a close watch on.

Oleander thrives in the sandy soil at the coast. If you have these gorgeous plants in your landscape for the beach house, they are toxic.

Tropical plants are sometimes utilized outdoors in pots, as annuals like; alocasia, aloe, begonia, caladium, coleus, geranium, moss rose. These are toxic.

Pieris, American holly berries, azalea, crocus, asian lily, English and poison  ivy, calla lily, gardenia,

lobelia, Lenten rose,

 mums, clematis, privet, daffodil, daylily, easter lily, elephant ears, foxglove, iris, hyacinth, gladiola, Rose of Sharon, several varieties of  hydrangea,  lantana, lily of the valley, nandina, peony,

vinca, primrose, rhododendron, st john’s wort, and yarrow

Vines-Perennial sweet pea, clematis, morning glory, wisteria

If you know your animals/pets will constantly chew and dig in your landscape, think about having a fence surrounding your toxic plants to ensure the safety of  your 4-legged friends. This way the family will have a peace of mind.

Additional information is provided by www.aspca.org. Protect your animals and be safe from DianaDigsDirt and Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journal.

 

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Workshop for Families-Creating Love Memorials™ in Greensboro, N.C.

Are pictures sitting in a box with journals, recipes, or other handwritten memorabilia of loved ones passed? Bring your keepsakes to create beautiful works of art with your own hands, where no experience is necessary and all supplies are complementary.

 Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal and other local organizations are sponsoring the first Creating Love Memorials™ Workshop for families. Feel free to bring any 2 dimensional papers, fabric or tags to incorporate, whether from a loved one or beloved pet. Professionals will be on site in the craft area to assist children in creating paper keepsakes.

Adults will have the opportunity to design an awareness ribbon for the cause of their choice. Below is a ribbon for a Grandmother with Alzheimer’s Disease.

A Love Memorial™ is a keepsake or sympathy gift, going beyond the typical cards, flowers or food. It is a thoughtful creation showing compassion for each specific situation. Many samples will be provided, including; pressed flowers, metal, jewelry, scrapbooking, woodwork, decoupage, gardens, stone, glass, photography and photo montages. Community resources will provide literature on babysitting classes, support forums, alternative funeral options and more. Also joining us are local animal rescue groups with adoptable pets. Our fire and police departments will share safety tips.  After school food and beverages will be served. Energy work sessions will be offered, and music performed by Jennifer Cockman during the workshop.

Thursday September 23rd

2000 East Wendover Ave. from 3-6pm

 Bring and share your own memorial keepsakes. These may be an inspiration to someone else.

Come and meet our resources (click for more information)

More resources include

  • Ameriprise Financial- planning for the future
  • Colonial Life- employee benefits counselor
  • New York Life- life insurance protecting families
  • GDR Credit Solutions- affordable help for those in need of improving credit scores

It is never too late to remember……………..

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Helleborus orientalis or Lenten Rose makes the perfect memory garden plant for Zone 7. Lenten Rose is evergreen and blooms in the winter when the landscape offers little color. The bloom time begins in January and ends in April.

The foliage is coarse and looks beautiful combined with other shading loving plants of fine texture like; Autumn Ferns, Astilbe, or Bleeding Hearts.

If a loved one passed in the winter months the Lenten Rose would be an appropriate sympathy gift. This small plant reaching only 18 inches is ideal for small gardens, pots or townhouse patios. Helleborus can be easily transplanted if one moves to another residence.

As you see in the memory garden below, the Helleborus are blooming the same time as the tulips, in March. It is quite a spectacular display when the Helleborus, winter pansies, tulips, and daffodils are in peak bloom time. Just a gorgeous display of white flowers.

The Lenten Rose flower is quite unique when pressed. In the memorial below, Helleborus flowers were pressed between wax paper and then adhered to card stock with other flowers and the deceased child’s name.

The Lenten Rose is truly a beautiful plant and is not difficult to grow. I would never suggest a finicky plant as one suitable for a memory garden plant. Helleborus should be kept out of direct afternoon sun or the south-east side of a home and given plenty of water the first year. When this plant is established, only periodic watering during a drought is needed. The Lenten Rose would benefit from a 3 inch layer of mulch to retain moisture.

There are also other varieties offering different ornamental value. Please contact me for additional information.

Peace Love and Hugs

Diana

Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journal

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The color white feels so right when designing a garden for a baby angel. Whether your baby passed early in pregnancy or as an infant, a garden of beauty can be created to honor little angels gone too soon.

 When I see white flowers I think pure, sweet, angelic, innocent and uncomplicated. The color white is prevalent in life changing events and bridges the past to the future.  People who have endured near death experiences claim to be surrounded by warm, white lights.

We wear white to weddings, to christen our babies and white shirts are worn to funerals by many. White has a true respect and dignity by various cultures.  White flowers not only have meaningful properties, they are the only color that is highly visible at dusk and in the moonlight.  The moonlit or white garden has a classic beauty that transcends time. If your baby passed before their gender was determined, white would be suitable for both. Maybe the early evening hours are significant and reminiscent of your angel. It could have been the time you told your family you were pregnant, when your baby was the most active, or the time you said nighty night to your sweet child.  Whether or not the time of day has relevance, a moonlit garden is more likely to be enjoyed because of work schedules. If you have an existing garden for your angel, I highly recommend adding some white blooms within. 

White flowers display incredible contrast with the dark, lustrous green foliage of certain plants.  This contrast automatically attracts your eyes while brightening a dark space.  Here are some plants that offer this contrast in a shady location; gardenia, otto luyken laurel, hills of snow hydrangea, immortality iris, and winters cupid camellia. Some suggestions for full sun areas are; annual periwinkle, swamp hibiscus, daisy and Diana rose of sharon.

Not all flower blooms are the same in shape and you may want to explore the different forms that could be significant to you and your baby. The white bleeding heart perennial has heart-shaped blooms that line the stem and the white balloon flower looks as if it could fly into the clouds. There are several white blooms shaped like snowballs; yoshino cherry tree, album rhododendron, hills of snow hydrangea, and snowball viburnum. There are several flower blooms that are bell-shaped which will add a very unique element to the garden. Some of the plant varieties are; pieris, lily of the valley, enkianthus, rabbiteye blueberry, and japanese snowbell tree. A few flowers are shaped like small bottle brushes including; otto luyken laurel, itea and monroe’s white liriope. Other plants have a fringe-type flower with strap-like petals like the fringe tree, white chinese loropetalum and cleome.

White flowers not only add beauty but also sweet fragrance. This could be one of your favorite scents to breathe in while reflecting upon your child. Some highly intoxicating flowers for sunny areas are; daffodils, crinium, garden phlox, dianthus, oriental lily, hyacinth, peony, sweetbay magnolia, sweet alyssum, petunia, gingerlily and snowball viburnum. Some shade-loving plants are; himalayan sweet box, itea, winter daphne, hollyleaf osmanthus, camellias, and fortune osmanthus.

You can also include the sense of audio in your baby’s garden. Blown by a gentle breeze, the sound of grass can be very soothing. Ornamental grasses add a fine and delicate texture to the garden and wonderful contrast beside course textured plants. The white, feathery plumes usually stand a bit higher than the strap-like foliage and can be seen from a distance. Grasses are usually drought tolerant, grow in full sun and very easy to maintain. Some good choices are; pampas grass, quaking grass, switch grass and maiden grass.

If you have a structure like a fence, vine pole or pergola, you may want to select a vine- like plant to cascade or climb along it. There are several plants to choose from, including; climbing iceberg or sally holmes rose, climbing hydrangea, silver lace vine, armand clematis, alba plena lady bank’s rose, moonflower, hybrid henryi clematis, sweet autumn clematis, perennial sweet pea vine (pictured above), star jasmine and  white japanese wisteria.

No matter if your loved one was your baby or your grandmother, white is soothing and comforting. Adding white blooms will contribute to the overall beauty of your memory garden for you and your loved ones.

Peace Love and Hugs

Diana

Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journal

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When a loved one passes, the road to healing is usually a long and challenging one. When you feel the time is right, planting a memory garden can provide healing and remembrance as a tribute to a deceased loved one while providing you with a place in nature to feel a spiritual connection.

People generally send flowers and plants to funeral homes, which are symbolic of new life.   Tending to your memory garden with water and care for its survival can direct your energy towards nurturing the garden. With your care, beautiful blooms and new life will emerge.

Since, healing comes from within, a memory garden allows you time to feel your environment and accept life’s natural progression within the comfort of your own property.People are often more depressed during the winter months, days are shorter and darkness seems eternal.  This is the time that the earth needs to rest in order to produce an explosion of color, fragrance, and new life that comes with spring.

Here are some ideas to get you started

  • Set aside uninterrupted time to think about your space 
  • Make a list of characteristics of your loved one
  • Write down a list of plants, bags of soil, mulch along with any other pieces you would need for your garden
  • Think about the focal point; a monument, a cross constructed from wood, a marker, or memorial boulder for your loved ones name and date.

  • You can work on your garden at any time once you have some basic materials
  • When do you want most of the plants to bloom? (at the time of your loved one’s passing to lift your spirits)

 Location of the garden 

·        Sunny or Shady Spot 

·        Accessibility 

·        Exposure to the wind 

·        Will the garden be visible from your home? 

·        Can the garden be incorporated into existing landscape? 

·        How much time do you want to spend on maintenance? 

·        Do you want perennials or seasonal annuals? 

·        Could you relocate this garden to another house 

Getting Started 

·        Clean the site of weeds and debris 

·        Bring in rich soil (Your plants will live longer and have a better chance of surviving drought). 

·        Planting should take place in the early Spring or Fall 

·        Mulch should be at 3” depth 

·        Water, water water (Make sure to water at a depth of 1” every third day until roots have been established) 

Other options if you don’t have space for a garden, you can be creative and place plants on a deck, porch patio or balcony.  Be creative and place plants in something other then a planter.  Also, incorporating statuaries, memorabilia. 

·        pots 

·        cinderblocks 

·        bird bath 

·        bird house 

·        wagon 

·        kitchen pots and pans 

·        recycled boot 

·        watering can 

·        chair with the seat cut out for a planter 

In honoring a baby: 

 ·        Consider a small garden that incorporates blue, pink or white flowers. 

·        Use flowers that produce small flower heads like forget-me-nots, baby’s breath or crocus bulbs. 

·        What was the theme of the nursery? 

·        What were the baby’s favorite songs? 

·        What were your dreams for him/her? 

If honoring a golfer: 

·        Plant an area strictly of dwarf mondo grass, which represents golf green 

·        Create a sand trap using pea gravel 

If honoring a music lover: 

·        Wind chimes

·        Outdoor speakers

·        Rain chimes 

·        When planting grasses, the movement  of wind on the blades of grass create a beautiful sound 

If honoring a spouse 

·        Plant a rose garden 

·        Incorporate a wood structure for a climbing rose 

·        Plant shrub roses at the base 

·        Tree roses and miniature roses could be planted in pots. 

·        The perimeter of the garden could be in the shape of a heart 

  In honoring a boater/fishermen 

·        In an area of your garden, which is wet, place an old rusty anchor as a focal point. 

·        Plant water loving plants like yellow flag iris, red twig dogwoods, bald cypress or weeping willow trees. 

·        Incorporate large bounders for seating. 

  Some plants have specific meanings 

·        Forget-me-nots- memories 

·        Rosemary- remembrance 

·        Oak Tree- liberty 

·        Daisies- innocence 

·        Lily- purity 

·        Allspice shrub- compassion 

Some plants incorporate a word in their name.   

·        Royal star magnolias 

·        Star of Bethlehem bulbs 

·        Blue star ammonia 

Planting Pointers 

Remember not only are the blooms of ornamental value.  Plants and their leaves have unique shapes, color and touch. 

·        Eastern redbud trees and sweetheart ivy are heart shaped 

·        Sweet gum trees are star-shaped 

·        Ginkgo trees are fan shaped 

·        Leaf-lambs ear have a very soft texture 

·        Rosemary is fine and soft 

·        Yucca plant is very coarse 

·        Burning bush, nandina, barberry and burgundy are red plants 

·        Maple trees are yellow fall colored 

·        Basil, rosemary and thyme have fragrance to the touch. 

I hope these tips will point you in the right direction to start a garden of remembrance.

Peace Love and Hugs

Diana

Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journal

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 We walked on a golden floor of autumn leaves, under an arbor to a heart-shaped garden with silver stars twinkling overhead. In the center was a raised area edged in sea shells, adorned with an angel statue and plaque with a water fountain serving as a headstone. Faye Floyd, a local hair stylist, lost her beloved pet Pudge after 14 years of companionship on July 23, 2009 due to age and diabetes. The memory garden for Pudge is located 40 feet from her back door where she can see it from inside the home.

 Faye and her seventeen year old son, Brad Marley fell in love with the underdog of a friend’s litter. The fuzzy and pudgey chow mix puppy quickly became a full-fledged part of the family. He slept in Faye’s bed, ate at the kitchen table and road shotgun in the car, not to mention having complete run of the house. Faye started and ended her day with Pudge by her feet.

 On a chilly afternoon August 22, 2009 35 guests attended a memorial ceremony in Faye’s backyard to honor Pudge’s life. The high number of attendees was a true testimony of the love for Pudge and the support for Faye. There were 3 readings, a song sung and composed by Brad with the entire ceremony videotaped by a friend. The lyrics and readings touched on the love, memories and the hope of seeing him again. When I asked Faye what helped her through this difficult time  she said reading a book titled,  “Cold Noses at the Pearly Gates”, building his memory garden and the support of family and friends who knew of their unbreakable bond.

 I thank Faye for sharing this touching story of the love for a pet sadly missed.

The memory garden is just beautiful. Faye was worried about what I would think because of my profession as a landscape designer. She had nothing to worry about, I was just glad that a garden was the type of memorial chosen to honor Pudge.

 

Every element in the garden has meaning and symbolism.

 

The angel was a statue given to Faye’s mother at an earlier point in time.

Rest in Peace Pudge

Peace Love and Hugs

Diana Gardner-Williams

Publisher-Just a Cloud Away, Inc™ Journal

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