Year End Wrap Up 2008-Part One

april-27-2008-014-2Saying Bon Voyage to the year 2008 calls for a pictorial showcasing the highlights regarding the garden and other events. Trying to do justice to each month means this will have to be a two parter. Part one will take us from January to the end of June, a busy and exciting time as winter gives way to spring gives way to summer. The above shot was taken April 27 with my signature plant, the decidous azaleas in full force. I didn’t want to start the show with sad little January, for the photos from that time are just not eye candy enough to lead the parade. That will be remedied for 2009, rest assured.january-29-2008-002-3Now to January 29, date of the construction of the fairy gazebo after those sprites whispered in a sleeping ear about needing a rec center in the garden. This was the beginning of several forays into fairy land.february-5-2008-007-21Late January into early February shows the fun with seeds experiment in the sunroom greenhouse in full swing. Onion seeds still clinging to the arising blades are remarkable in their simple beauty on a cold winter’s day.february-5-2008-035-2Spring comes early here in southeast Tennessee, February 5 this time with crocus flowers popping open on warmer days. We have had crocus in early January open in other years, but this was the first for 2008. I did worry about the poor little bee when the cold returned as it always does this time of year.<february-18-2008-001-3After the old foliage has been shorn from the Helleborus orientalis the flowers are ready to open their faces to the adoring crowds on Feburary 18, freckles or no.february-24-2008-023-3The cardinals are dancing around the daffodil and daylily foliage poking up under the bird feeders on February 24.march-11-2008-024-2The hedge bed is more shaded until the sun rises higher in the horizon delaying the grand show of the Narcissus pseudonarcissus to March 11. Sunnier spots had these daffs that came with the property blooming several weeks earlier.march-11-2008-006-2Oops, winter returns the next day just to keep us honest. A cardinal huddles in the dogwood branches to the right of the pond.march-28-2008-026-2The snow melts quickly and spring is in full tilt by March 28. Quince, hellebores, grape hyacinths, heaths and daffodils are among the participants.april-5-2008-spring-fling-056-3A diversionary trip to Austin for the inaugural garden blogger’s spring fling took us away from the garden on April 5. This shot of the tower tunnel at the Ladybird Johnson wildflower center is one of my favorites of that trip. 2009 will see us in Chicago in May,I can’t wait!april-16-2008-069-2The brief but fabulous white tree peony display on April 16 was a highlight of that floriferous month.april-21-2008-011-2Late tulips on April 21 extended the bulb explosion.may-5-2008-005-2May 5 brings Rosa ‘Cadenza’ backed by the wall of pyracantha blooms into the mix. The pyracanthas bloomed as never before, followed by bounteous berries for the birdies come fall.may-29-2008-030-2The floral bounty continues throughout that merry month with a mix of riotous colors shown here in a shot of the middle terrace path taken May 29.The stepping stone path is obscured by the masses of flowers!june-11-2008-edisto-048-2Another of many trips, we are a traveling lot, this time to Edisto Beach, South Carolina for the fairegarden clan sun and fun extravaganza. june-18-2008-5-2We did manage to return home in time for the big crescendo of midsummer night’s eve with Mister and Missus Bongo Congo having the time of their lives attending fairy parties galore.
The year end review will continue with part two taking us from July to the end of the year. Hope to see you there!

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36 Responses to Year End Wrap Up 2008-Part One

  1. VP says:

    Oh what a treat you’re giving us Frances!

    Happy New Year – may your garden flourish in 2009 πŸ™‚

    Hi VP, thanks so much for your friendship and support. I have really enjoyed getting to know you better through blogging, a marvelous bonus that was unexpected when I began. May your 2009 be the best ever!

  2. Darla says:

    Oh my goodness! Simply amazing. Ready for part two here!!

    Hi Darla, thanks for that support! It takes a lot more effort to put this type of post together, so many photos to go through and sift out what to show. Glad you enjoyed it!

  3. Shirl says:

    Hi again Frances πŸ™‚

    Just popped by to wish you β€œHAPPY HOGMANAY” and all the best for 2009 πŸ˜€

    Gosh… what treats to look back to for the first part of this year! Loved the Cardinals dancing with the daffodils and the tree peonies! I have thoroughly enjoyed visiting your garden throughout the year and looking forward to seeing what fun you get up to at the Fairegarden in the coming one!

    Hi Shirl, thanks so much and the same good wishes to you and yours! I am so glad to have met you and viewed your wonderful blog full of goodies we will never see on this side of the pond.

  4. Good morning, Frances,
    What a delight to be taken back through your Faire garden from 2008. (I’m working on a similar post and not getting very far with the 2.5 year old by my side for the past two days– but I’ll get it done). I remember so many of these times with you and to see them again is a treat. The yellow azaleas really caught my eye when first posted and once again brightened my morning already today. I clearly remember your Austin tunnel photo being one of my favorites of all that were captured by that fun fling. The cardinal in the late freeze is one I must have missed as well as the roses… both great photos. Will look forward to the second half as summer explodes on your beautiful piece of sloping earth. Have a wonderful day. I hear the little guy calling me from his crib …

    Hi Meems, what a joy to hear a littel voice calling from a crib, ahhh! Thanks for traveling down memory lane with me, I do so enjoy your company. Some of the photos are never before published that were saved for my records. A good way to share them on a post such as this. Thanks for your support and friendship!

  5. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    Traveling through your garden year makes me realize that yes, spring will be coming. Happy New Year to you Frances.

    Hi Lisa, thanks for stopping by and may your 2009 be full of wonderful bird sightings! Spring will return, I am fairly sure, we will all be glad to see it!

  6. Victoria says:

    You bet I’ll be there for the next instalment! It was wonderful looking back on your year so far. I hope 2009 blooms just as well for you.

    Hi Victoria, thanks, I’ll be looking for you there! πŸ™‚ May your own blooms be the stuff of dreams as well.

  7. Gail says:

    Dear Frances, Good morning…and it is when this is the first sight you see. No coffee yet, but who needs it! Today’s post really is in an alternate universe…a beautiful one! Each photo is a treat all by itself, but I love the late tulips, the tunnel and well….all of them! Happy New Year. gail

    Good morning dear Gail and thanks. Do go get some coffee though! May your new year be as special as this last one, where we met and became friends. I look forward to seeing that way back whipped into shape, maybe with a few helpful ideas from others! πŸ™‚

  8. Joy says:

    Happy New Year Frances !
    I loved seeing these beautiful pictures : )
    I’m going to try harder to take pictures that I can compare each season with .. that is another interesting way to do it.
    You have such different areas in your garden it could never get boring .. I love the two characters at the end with the flowers on their heads .. I wonder who they could be ? LOL wink wink

    Hi Joy, thanks and the same good wishes thrown back at you! Remembering to take those photos from the same spot each month is a goal of mine. Not doing it mind you, remember to do it! I must put a sticky note on my forehead! There are very different areas here, and you cannot see the whole from any one spot either, adds to the enjoyment and mystery. Oh those cut ups from Bongo Congo land, they are always up to something fun! πŸ™‚

  9. tina says:

    I’ll be there for sure! This is an excellent post to bring back all the memories of the past year. Very well done! We sometimes forget the events and wrapping them up this way sure brought back memories for me. May 2009 be your best year yet Frances!

    Hi Tina, thanks, I knew I could count on you! Having the photos does help us remember the ups and downs of the past year. I do hope your 2009 is the best year yet also, having each year be better is a good goal for us all!

  10. Randy says:

    Oh my heavens, Frances! What are the names of the three azaleas in the first picture? What a breath taking combination! I know you are going to have a wonderful New Year, enjoy it.:-)

    Hi Randy, so glad you asked! The deciduous azaleas, native to my area and possibly yours too, are my most favorite flower in the whole world. I recently counted the number of bushes at 37, some duplicates and am trying to list the varieties. Some had no tags ever, some are species, some hybrids, but all are wonderful. The three from the left to right are Admiral Semmes, Mandarin Lights and Primrose. The yellows are by far the toughest and easiest to grow here. They have suffered with the drought, especially the newly planted ones. The ones in that have been in the ground longer are pretty drought tolerant, but I have given them extra water so as not to lose them. Next year I hope to get way more photos of them from afar, not just macros which don’t show how they work in the landscape. Thanks for the good wishes, and the very best back to you too! πŸ™‚

  11. Frances,

    Happy New Year!

    I love seeing your photos! You’ve really inspired me with the white pyracantha blooms behind your roses! Stunning combo that would never enter my mind.


    Hi Cameron, thanks and the same to you also! I am glad you enjoyed the photo review of the first half of the year. The roses and pyracantha was just a lucky coincidence, I hadn’t thought of them together at all, or even realized they bloomed at the same time when the rose was moved from a corner that had become too shady. That is always the way it works here, dumb luck! πŸ™‚

  12. Racquel says:

    What an adventurous year you’ve had thus far Frances! This is fun, can’t wait to see part 2! πŸ™‚

    Hi Racquel, thanks for your enthusiasm, it makes the blogging so satisfying to see others enjoy our efforts, don’t you agree? πŸ™‚

  13. Cinj says:

    What a great year in flowers. I think you’ve got a MUCH longer growing season than we do. I love those flowers blooming in Febrary and March there. I think they bloom here in April or May. I still need to get some bulbs though.

    Hi Cinj, thanks for stopping by and glad you enjoyed the show. I would agree that our growing season is longer here, one of the reasons we chose this area. Our big box store still has lots of bulbs, marked way down, I am always tempted by those cheap prices, but watch out for the dried out ones. I always give the bulbs a good squeeze to see if they are still viable!
    Good luck with them. πŸ™‚

  14. gittan says:

    What a great garden year you have had. I hope the year to come will be even better. Happy New Year Frances / gittan
    (by the way, I’ve read the google translation now and I agree. What a terrible translation they make! I’ve desided to do it by myself as often as I can. But If I haven’t you’re able do use google instead)

    Hi Gittan, thanks so much and those same good wishes are sent back to you! Thanks for reading google’s mess, where do they come up with those translations? Not by humans probably! I do appreciate the effort you are making and will be a loyal follower of your posts! πŸ™‚

  15. WONDERFUL! Frances your post is like a big ‘happy pill’. Isn’t just exciting tomorrow we start all over again! Looking farward to a great garden year 2009.
    I wish you a great New Years Eve xoxo & cheers/ Tyra

    Hi Tyra, thanks so much, a happy pill, I love it! I feel the same excitement thinking about the gardens to be too. May your 2009 be the best ever!

  16. Dave says:

    Great pictures Frances! I enjoyed the look back!

    Hi Dave, thanks, glad you liked it. May you and your family have a fabulous 2009!

  17. Katarina says:

    Frances, I’ve enjoyed this post a lot! So many fabulous photos – the one of the tree peony made my heart ache.
    i wish you a very Happy new Year!

    Hi Katarin, thanks so much, high praise indeed from one who posted the most beautiful photos ever of your flowers through the year! May you also have the best 2009 ever and may your wishes for us all come true. πŸ™‚

  18. Robin says:

    Frances, I enjoyed the look back. The spring eye candy is just what I needed to see today! I wish spring arrived as early in Indy as it does at Faire Garden!

    Hi Robin, thanks, glad you enjoyed it. The cold wind is howling at the moment here and the spring photos are certainly a wonderful distraction. πŸ™‚ As are your bird photos. Our spring likes to tease us with the ups and downs of the temps, but the flowers somehow withstand that roller coaster. May you have the best 2009 ever.

  19. Rose says:

    Beautiful post, Frances! It reminds us of all the bright colors soon to come. I can’t wait to see Part II. Wishing you a very happy New Year!

    Hi Rose, thanks and may you have a wonderful 2009 also. Looking through the garden photos from warmer times has helped me to make it through winter drabs for several years now, way before blogging. I can spend hours contemplating them and thinking of ways to improve the garden. Part two is just getting the finishing touches!

  20. Kathleen says:

    Wonderful idea to review the year this way Frances. Your garden is phenomenal in every season. Aren’t we so lucky to surround ourselves with so much beauty? I also will look forward to part two and I wish you a joyous New Year. It’s been fabulous to get acquainted with your garden and many talents this past year.

  21. Monica says:

    Hi Frances, Thanks for your info about where you live in response to my last comment! I’m not surprised many Michiganders are moving to TN… people are leaving Michigan in droves, to find jobs or retire. Lots of people are moving to Texas and the Carolinas for jobs; many young people are heading out west–my niece lives in CO and two coworkers have young-adult kids in Portland, OR. This entry also gives me a great feel of what blooms when in your part of the world, thanks. How hot and humid does it get there in, say, July-August? Thanks! And happy new year with wonderful garden adventures ahead!

    Hi Monica, thanks. Our summers are hot, but not as hot as the lower south. We are considered on the border of mid to upper south. The hottest is around 90, but that is rare, 80’s are more the norm. It can be humid, but not oppressively so, like when we lived in Houston. It may be our elevation. The higher you get into the mountains, the cooler and drier it is. Spring and fall last a long time with moderate temps. Late winter into early spring is a roller coaster of ups and downs, one day a sweater will be plenty, the next you need much more. I am not an expert on the weather, but as for the gardening, it is the best of any place I have lived. I have thought more about it after your first comment and wanted to add that Knoxville is home to the University of Tennessee, a good thing for culture and young people keeping it vibrant, although politically quite conservative. My little town about an hour south of there is very quiet, about twenty years behind socially. But it is very cheap to live here and buy land. The closer you get to the big cities, the more expensive. Okay, I didn’t mean to write a novel here, but do look into more info online about the weather, etc. And have a very happy new year!

  22. Jean says:

    Frances, thanks so much for catching me up with your garden. Since I didn’t start blogging until July, I missed all your previous posts. Spring looks FANTASTIC in your garden! Makes me think I have a long way to go. I’ve been wanting some native azaleas. Maybe they’ll help perk up my spring. And more bulbs…sigh. So many things to do, so little time! Hope you have a great and growing new year.

    Hi Jean, thanks for playing catch up! The spring garden here is wonderful, but it is easy to plant for spring, it is the rest of the year that gets more difficult. I do think that the beauty of gardening is that is a long slow process, not so little time, but plenty of time, your whole life, to keep adding and rethinking those beds. I am still working on getting it right, some parts are pretty good at some times of the year, but there are always new plants discovered, especially with so many wonderful blogs from which to learn. And new design concepts, a garden is never finished. May your 2009 be the best year ever!

  23. Jon says:

    Frances, With your blog you have raised the bar to a high notch of excellence that I aspire to reach one day. Thanks for sharing your great photos and posts with us during the past year. Happy New Year!
    Jon at Mississippi Garden

    Wow Jon, thanks, what a wonderfully kind thing to say, I am honored! May you have the best year ever in 2009!

  24. It is so interesting and informative to visit gardens in different locations, isn’t it? You have a beautiful collection of plants and gardens. Thank you for sharing so readily! Happy 2009!

    Hi Shady, thanks and may you have the best year ever in 2009! I do like seeing what is happening all over the world and the blogs really make that happen for us all to enjoy.

  25. I’m completely in love with your tree peony. When you say brief, how brief? That last picture is just to cute! They look like they are having just too much fun!!! Kim

    Hi Kim, thanks. Depending on the weather, the tree peony can be open for one day if it is hot, or several if it stays nice and cool and no rain to knock the petals off. Sometimes there are several blooms open at once, like last year, or they might do one per day. The drought has been hard on them, I have two more, a dark red and one that has yet to bloom that is supposed to be purple. The Bongo Congo’s are a fun loving couple! I hope you have a most wonderful 2009!

  26. kerri says:

    It’s lovely to see your garden year in review, Frances. I can’t wait for part 2. Lucky you to have spring in February! That Pyracantha-rose combo might have been dumb luck, but it sure is gorgeous. I may have to try it!
    Wishing you a wonderful garden in 2009, joy and many blessings for you and yours. Happy, happy New Year dear Frances.

    Hi Kerri, thanks so much and the same wonderful wishes back to you and yours. I hope you aren’t disappointed in part two, spring is hard to beat here and lasts for several months. We are very lucky in that. Do try the pyracantha with roses, you can grow both well, I know and have the room too! πŸ™‚

  27. Philip says:

    Hi Frances,
    I just loved part one!!!!
    I missed most of this until I discovered your blog. It has been so much fun looking at the incredible spring flowers, the fairy gazebo!( now, that is very thoughtful. In Denmark they place a bowl of porrigge out this time of year for the Nisse to keep them happy… so, they should love the gazebo with no man made materials. Very wise.
    I look forward to part II!
    Happy new year!Yay!

    Hi Philip, so nice to see you and glad you were entertained by part one. Spring here is fantastic, the best time of year I think. Although fall is good too, and well, all of the seasons but really spring has the flower show that gets me through the winter as I gaze at the photographs taken in April and May. Thanks so much about that bit of fairy info, I will make sure my inhabitants are well fed, maybe oatmeal would please them. πŸ™‚ My best wishes for your 2009 to be the best year ever!

  28. chuck b. says:

    You can look back on ’08 and be very proud of your excellent blog and lovely gardens. Thank you for coming in to our lives and sharing so much with us.

    Hi Chuck, how sweet of you, thanks so much. It has been finding new friends, like you, that share the passion of gardening that has made it the most rewarding year for me. I do hope you and Guy have a most wonderful 2009!

  29. Happy New Year, Transplantable FaireFrances – your words at Gail’s taproot post are so true!
    This look back was very enjoyable and since we want what we can’t have, my favorite is the Tree Peony and the tulips. I know you have lots more eye candy coming up in part two – it’s not a surprise that you need more than one post ;-]

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

    Hi Annie, thanks and the same back to you and yours, dear Annie. Spring is by far the best eye candy here, all those bulbs, we are indeed lucky with the ability to grow those precious tulips, even if many of them don’t return in our zone 7. Hope part two is as well received my musical rose!

  30. Pam/Digging says:

    What a fun journey it’s been, following your garden adventures this year. Your photos are always a treat, and someday I’d really love to see your garden in person. If Kris and Layanee don’t take on Spring Fling in 2010, maybe the Tennessee garden bloggers will? πŸ™‚

    Hi Pam, oh ho, even alcohol can’t make me volunteer for that role. HA The big group of bloggers are in the Nashville area here, and that would be a good locale for such a meeting, lots to do and see. I would just be a guest, like you, there. Are you listening Gail? I am three and one half hours from there, and really in a different universe in my tiny town. But I would love for you to visit my garden! πŸ™‚

  31. Brenda Kula says:

    You always, ALWAYS, have such delightful photos. No matter which camera you use! I absolutely love that simple photo of the onions with the seeds still clinging onto the shoots. Your gardens are inspiring, and so is the writing of this wonderful, colorful blog!

    Hi Brenda, thank you so much, I am delighted that you enjoy the posts. The onions emerging is a fave of mine too. I am so happy to have met you and shared in the thrill of your reno, that masterful Robert and everything else. May your 2009 be the best year ever!


  32. Simply beautiful photos. Those Hellebores. That Tree Peony. Ah, they made my winter day. Happy New Year my friend. Anxiously awaiting the next installment.~~Dee

    Hi Dee, Happy new year to you and I await your part two as well! 2008 had so much excitement that we could not contain it in one post! πŸ™‚

  33. Robin says:

    It”s been a lovely year in the garden Miss Frances, but I know the next one will be even better! Can’t wait to see the next half of the year in review!

    Hi Robin, thanks so much and happy new year! Both parts of the year end wrap up are up now, hope you enjoy them!

  34. Monica says:

    Thanks, Frances! I’m politically liberal, but my lifestyle is conservative, so the politics per se wouldn’t be too big a deal. I did look up home prices and it’s WAY cheaper than Michigan (which would be important for me). Where else have you gardened? And I thought it would be hotter; I have trouble with humidity; but it’s already humid in Michigan and gets into the 90s a few weeks each year. I don’t know from elevation as a Michigander, but I did notice the heat was much more bearable in CO! I’m not 100% set to lave Michigan (and I’d need to find a job), but at the same time, I’m not gung ho to stay, either! Happy new year!

    Hi Monica, happy new year! It has been fun trying to give you the sales pitch, now the ball is in your court. πŸ™‚ I have gardened in Tulsa, Ok, central PA, Orange County, CA, NE TN, northern suburb of Houston, TX and now in SE TN. Some varied spots of soil in all those places. So glad you will be going to Chicago too. πŸ™‚

  35. Gail says:

    Dear Frances, While highly complimented by this…let’s wait until we recruit more bloggers within an easily drivable distance! Most of our time would be spent on the road! But I do want to go to California… gail

    Hi Gail, I’m with you, we aren’t not ready for prime time flinging yet, and may never be with the distances apart! I would like to go to PA!

  36. It’s a smorgasboard of eye candy! I have to vote for the Hellebore photo as my favorite. Have a wonderful New Year!

    Hi MMD, thanks and a happy new year to you and yours! Glad you picked the hellebore, for there will be many more shots of them for 2009, they are almost ready for the old leaves to be cut down.

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