remember my back porch makeover? today i’m going to share with you one of my thrifty diy projects that gave the space the right kind of feel- a thrifted frame tray!
i bought this lovely from goodwill for a buck. beautiful, isn’t it?
i painted the frame with high gloss white spray paint and then covered the cardboard insert with this red print fabric (from ikea). i secured it with a little hot glue and voila! i had a matching tray centerpiece within about twenty minutes!
happy friday lovelies! i spent most of last weekend making over our last-on-the-to-do-list back porch, and i’m to share with you the before and after’s! with some serious thriftiness and diy projects, i was able to do the entire makeover for under $300. there are lots of little projects that i’ll be sharing with you over the next few weeks, but here is the big picture of our back porch makeover:
this table, fan, tic tac toe game and vase were all thrifted, for under $20!
so, this is pretty much where you’ll find me this weekend! do you have any plans for the weekend?
Didn’t Caroline’s post just make you itch to get out in the garden or onto your balcony and plant something? We put in our veg patch last week and every day (ok, about 5 times a day) I’m out there staring at the soil waiting for things to sprout!
I don’t know about you, but I can’t always use up all the seeds that come in a packet. After all, who needs 200 heads of lettuce? Some I’ll be keeping to sow later in the season, some I’d like to pass along to gardening friends. Since I have a project up my sleeve that will use the seed packets to document the garden season I needed a way to save the extra seeds and it needed to be pretty! So I came up with some seed envelopes. Hope you like them! Click here to download the pdf.
Hello! I hope this finds you well and getting geared up for some gardening time this weekend. Things here in the Ladybug world are in a bit of a kerfuffle (scientific term) – we had a neighbor dump debris on top of one of our new veggie garden beds and contaminate the soil with sawdust. It was not malicious – he thought he was doing us a favor – and we had to explain that the chemicals from pressure treated wood are not something we want to amend the soil with. But to make lemonade out of lemons I’ve decided to give strawbale gardening a try…
I spent a good chunk of today sourcing some straw, and I’ll get going on building and conditioning the garden once the rain stops. I’m looking forward to seeing how these work for me – I have some really poor soil in areas of my garden, but I want lots of fresh veggies! I’ll keep you guys posted as to my progress!
Now it is time for me to let you know one of my deep dark secrets….I am the world’s worst seed starter. Yes, yes, I know how much money I could save by starting seeds, and I can imagine how fulfilling the process must be, but not for me. I prefer to direct sow seeds into the ground – morning glory, parsley, cosmos, sunflowers, nasturtiums…all of these I grow from seed. And I put on a grand facade of being happy to buy my seedlings from local organic growers, and I am, of course, but for once I would like to successfully start my tomatoes from seed. This year, however, was not the year. Spring hit us early and my business needed me more than my seeds did. So I started late and have, so far, had zero germination. I have friends with wonderful luck with seeds, and I follow their advice, but I think I need to simply come to terms with the fact that I have a seed black thumb!!
However, what would an organic gardening blog be without seed starting advice, even late in the season. And what would I be without lots of resources to share with you! First of all I suggest you ask around in your circle of friends. See if you can group together to buy and start seeds – sometimes you end up with way more seedlings than one garden can deal with and it is nice to share the bounty.
A Way to Garden – Margaret Roach is one of my favorite people and a wonderfully generous gardener.
Organic Gardening – Great resource, with a nice slide show showing the thinning out of seeds
Cornell University – Cornell is a constant resource in my gardening life…from apple tree advice to seed varieties and descriptions…do visit them & see for yourself
Do you have any seed starting tips or hints to share? Did you overcome your fears of seed starting and now it is old news? Share with me your secrets, dear readers! It is not too late for me to start some mid season veggies and I promise I will take any advice you can give!!
And now, for the requisite bit of Brit in our weekly chat. This is becoming a habit I will have to break, before it truly becomes “a thing” I’ll have to keep up with every week…if only Black Adder gardened…then I would never run out of Brit content to post….
Last week I promised you a project…and so in the spirit of seed starting, I would like to introduce you to Guerrilla Gardening and seed bombs. I’m an active guerrilla gardener – and while I don’t make seed bombs often anymore, I have recently been re-inspired and have ordered the ingredients to make a whole bunch of them this weekend.
I use native seeds, and this year I will be focusing on native milkweeds to feed the monarch butterflies.
The primary thing to remember when making seed bombs is the ratio of five parts clay to one part seed and one part compost. Mix these together in a large bowl, slowly and carefully add water to combine them, then start to shape the mixture into balls. After about a day of drying they are ready to be thrown into abandoned lots or larger areas of land that has gone to the “weeds”!
I hope this will inspire you to think about areas in your neighborhood you can seed bomb. It really is a fun way to interact with your environment, and as long as the plants you are bombing are natives, you won’t be doing any harm!
Have you ever guerrilla gardened? Is there an area in your community that could use some attention? Let’s meet in the comments and see if we can’t beautify the world, one seed bomb at a time!
Next week I have a fun project to share with you all! Until then, happy gardening!!!
Caroline Finnegan owns Ladybug Landscaping, a full service organic landscaping company. based in CT. She is a NOFA accredited landcare professional and when not designing gardens can be found rearranging her furniture or out at a flea market finding new goodies. She almost always has dirt under her nails.
are you ready for some eye candy? if not, make sure to prepare yourself! nonpareil magazine is the result of a beautiful collaboration between maddy hague of the inspired bride and kristen magee of paper crave. nonpareil is an online magazine focusing on weddings and special occasions, with a passion for projects and do it yourself tutorials. each magazine (there are three published already!) features page after page of beautiful inspirations. these innovative ideas, clever projects and stunning tutorials will leave you inspired and your guests in awe. most of their diy projects can be used for any number of occasions (not just for weddings)-and with a page dedicated to downloads, you’ll find plenty to keep you busy!
along with my plant frenzies, i had a little time to get crafty as well! i ran across this article on how to paint your own chalkboard as i was organizing some of my magazines. i had torn it out and stuck it another magazine over 3 years ago!! i remembered how much i loved the project, and picked up the necessities on my lowes expedition.
what you need:
- flat latex paint in your desired color
- unsanded tile grout (2 tbls for each 1 cup of paint)
- a roller or brush
- 150 grit sandpaper
- painter’s tape
- for small areas, mix one cup at a time. stir 2 tbsp of unsanded tile grout into one cup of paint, making sure any clumps dissolve.
- apply the mixture to either a roller or brush and and begin painting your surface. make sure to coat evenly and thoroughly (mine took about 3 coats). then, let it dry.
- once dry, sand the surface with your 150 grit sand paper to smooth it.
- to condition, run your chalk complety over the entire surface, and wipe clean.
- enjoy your new chalkboard!
here’s my lonesome door before…
and here it is after!
oh the endless possibilities :: cabinet doors, pantry doors, wall spaces, children’s wall, office desks and more!
welcome lovelies! my name is bonnie and this is where i roost. i hope you'll grab a cup of tea and make yourself comfy- we look forward to getting to know you! you can learn more about me and why i love to blog here.
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