On a recent rainy day we grabbed the camera and went out for some drive by shooting of the photographic type in our small southern town. We began downtown, which is very close to our home. The corners around the courthouse square are all nicely planted with shrubs and seasonal color. These fall planted pansies are bright and cheerful. New street lamps were installed a couple of years ago after a study was done on how to improve the quality for tourism of this historic area.
A short walk, er drive, up the street takes us by a tasteful planting in front of a dentist office.
The window box is thoughtfully planted with colorful foliage including coleus and golden creeping jenny, Lysimachia nummularia ‘Aurea’,( thanks for reminding me to put the correct name, Helen). Well done.
A few more steps, er wheel rollings, away is the main entrance to the college campus. This is where three of our four offspring attended school, playing soccer for tuition breaks, allowing us to purchase the house we now reside in for them to live while in school. We are very proud to show the block wall on the left that had to be rebuilt after the original stone, seen on the right of the steps, deteriorated. Those newer blocks are the same exact blocks as our own long wall are, ours were ordered at the same time and built by the same contractor as these. They have weathered nicely and have the patina of age.
On to the residential street just a block away from the campus downtown is an area recently designated as historic by the town council. They were advised to do this by the same consultant that helped give ideas for the sprucing up of the courthouse square. Any remodeling done to the houses in this area has to follow strict guidelines to keep the flavor and integrity of the neighborhood. This is a good example of those rules being followed. Of course there was a terrible wailing and uproar about government taking over their lives, etc. but the politicians were steadfast in doing the right thing.
A couple of houses down is a smaller, though simply charming home with blooming Carolina jessamine along the porch. We had this same plant near our house and had to remove it to prevent the roof and rafters from being invaded. I assume there is constant pruning on this, and see a ladder to back up this supposition.
Closer to our house is a fine example of good planting, (please ignore the hose reel it could not be cropped out). Deciduous azaleas still in the pots, I am positive that they did not come from the grocery as those bags indicate, brighten this side yard near a carport. A couple of days later we saw workers had planted these and mulched all the beds for a finished look. Kudos on plant selection, neighbor!
Now we are to the meat of this story, a very special parking lot for the YMCA. This facility is well used by the local residents for its exercise classes and other offerings. The parking has always been inadaquate and last fall a new space across the street from the building was erected. Our interest was piqued everytime we drove by. This signage in a kiosk in the middle of the lot explains what has been done.
It has been very difficult to get the grass established with the above average rainfall that we have experienced since this was installed. The lot had to be roped off to cars for many days so the grass could recover. It still is patchy but the strangest thing is driving on the grass rather than the pavement. It just seems wrong.
The plantings on the roof appear to be doing well.When I got out of the vehicle to snap these photos, a bird was squawking at me the entire time. It looks like a Killdeer, so named for the call it makes when someone is threatening its nest. I looked around for the nest but didn’t see one. She was quite bold and my photo shoot was shortened so she could relax. We hold mothers and mothers to be in the highest regard.
On the way back to Casa Fairegarden we did a final drive by snapping of neighbor Mickey’s lovely yard. The row of seventeen Knockout roses along the fence by the street has grown to partially block the view of the gazebo and Chamaecyparis bed, but you get the idea of this park like setting.
I hope you enjoyed the drive by of our neighborhood. We bow to the vivacious VP of Veg Plotting for sponsoring OOTS, Out On The Street, and encourage you to join in the fun and show us where you live or have visited. You may leave a link anytime, she is very forgiving about dates. And it should be added, she and Helen, the Patient Gardener are hosting the Meet At Malvern blogger get together at the spring show in the Malvern Hills in the United Kingdom. We hope to report back from that very location soon.