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May 30, 2017

Late Spring Bits and Pieces In the Garden

It's becoming more beautiful each day and feeling more and more like summer. 

 The trees have been shedding their seeds and pollen and it's been very messy!  The giant Sum and Substance hosta is huge and the Empress Wu to the rear is getting larger each year.  Something (likely a deer) chewed off part of it so it would have been even larger.  The hostas are still filling out so they'll be getting larger yet.

I went with red this year as my predominant color.  I just got the border planted around the fountain area.  It's going to look great once the plants start to fill in more.  I also chose a lot of other colors for my planters.  I wanted to be surrounded with a lot of color. 

 This is a path area to the rest of the back yard and it was being overtaken by the Sweet Woodruff plant.  This morning I removed a bunch of it to open the path back up.  The Sweet Woodruff has a hairy root system that sends off runners but it's not real hard to remove.  The roots are not real deep and pull away easily enough.  I like how it fills in and softens things.

Further out back a big ash tree fell and got hung up on some maple trees.  It's at least 50 ft. tall and now we have to decide on whether and how to remove it.

By the deck I planted a Sarah Bernhardt Peony (which I don't think is going to bloom this year), two Pink Columbine plants and further down some Cleome.   I call this my pink garden area!  The Dutch Iris are coming on strong so it won't be long before they're blooming.

 I bought some Variegated Sweet Iris and planted two of them out front on the island.  I think they compliment the blue spruce tree and the hostas.  There are two milkweed plants that jumped  in by the daylilies.  I'll leave them since we are all trying to be more conscious about the Monarch Butterfly's needs (although I may regret it in my garden).

Orange Marmalade Hosta- has been slow for me but this year it looks really good.  I credit the easier winter that we had for most everything looking good this year.

I found some peony cages and the Peonies are doing quite well with them.  The third one you can barely see is to the left and almost eaten by the Blue Spruce.  I keep saying the spruce is done getting wider, but each year it continues to widen out!   I really have to move that peony this fall.  They all have flower heads so it won't be long before I can enjoy them!

 The columbines are blooming now.  The big blue spruce is moving in on them too!  Dan suggested we may have to open up the bed again and move the plants.  I would love to do it although it's a huge task.  We shall see!

I had Dan remove two Yew shrubs from the front area of the house.  I have been changing this area up for a few years.  I have some older Arborvitae (cedars) I want to yank out too that are around the corner.

We put in a Minnesota Snowflake Mocorange.  It's not supposed to get larger than 5 to 8 ft. tall and the same for width.  It has buds all over it so I can't wait to smell it.  We're looking at hiring some strong young men to clean out all the lava we put in there 20+ years ago.

A couple of quick shots of the fairy garden.  It's in slow motion so I won't show it all yet.  Still waiting for the tulip plants to die back a bit so I can shear off the plants and finish the fairy garden.

 See the little purple viola to the left.  It came back from last year and I relocated it back there.  I just love their sweet little faces!

These are some Pansiolas I put in.  It's a new crossbred pansy and viola that are supposed to be more heat tolerant, don't need dead heading and should bloom all summer.  We shall see!  A lot of my annual plants quit blooming because of the stretched out cool spring weather we have had but they should be blooming soon!

A quick picture of the back area.  Things are steadily filling out.  The lilac topiary is about to flower too- can't wait since this one smells divine!  As soon as my other annuals start flowering better I'll show you my planters.

Thank you as always for your visits!

May 18, 2017

This and That This Week #15

I recently discovered this enthusiastic gardener who along with her husband create videos showing her ideas for planters, and many other subjects.  This one caught my attention so I decided to give this design a try.  Here is the link to the video where I got my inspiration Garden Answer- April 25, 2017. I don't normally copy ideas but what really made this intriguing to me is the perennial Sweet Iris plant she used in it.  As I've learned she often uses a perennial in her annual planters which is totally a new idea for me!

My planter is white so that's a big difference but I found an assortment of the same plants she used and put it together very similarly.  Unfortunately all my flowers aren't blooming at the moment but soon enough it will look more and more like hers.  She has a ton of videos on Facebook and YouTube    .  I noted one of the videos has been viewed over 1,800,000 times! 

I have a very large white rooster I found at Cracker Barrel about 6 years ago.  I've been asked numerous times where to get it but of course there are no more of them.  I was at Hobby Lobby the other day and look what I found!  It's really close to the same look although it is smaller.  I even copied the store label in case it would help anyone that wants to find it. 
This is a link to a post where I talked about finding another white rooster which also shows a picture of mine.  Click "here

I've just begun to fill my planters with annuals.  I have a bunch more to go. This is what keeps me happy and busy during the summer.

This big terracotta planter from Mexico was gifted to me by my hubby for Mother's Day.  I spotted it at a garden center and fell in love with it.  It's pretty large and I stuffed it with a bunch of annuals.  Can't wait to see it as it starts to fill out more.  I'll be update things like this on my garden blog.
We are just now starting to get heavy pollen here and the trees are dropping their debris everywhere so my deck is messy!

While on a trip up to Petoskey we stopped at Monarch again and I spotted a huge glass cloche on display.  I was again inspired when I saw this zinnia plant inside of theirs.  I have a big cloche too and decided it was time to create a new look for it.  Extremely simple but I like it! 

I updated it by adding these wooden beads. 

So that's my This and That This Week! 

May 16, 2017

Counting Flowers On The Wall...or rather the Table (T)

Last week I created a tablescape using these beautiful roses I purchased and put in a pretty glass vase.

The day after my post I received a special delivery from our Son, Daughter in-law and Grandson of this mixed arrangment with gorgeous roses in a hand painted vase as a Mother's Day gift.

Two days later our daughter came home to visit for Mother's Day and she brought this bouquet of  roses in beautiful shades of peach!  She placed them in my crystal vase which created a very elegant look.
Now I was perplexed as to what I was going to do with all the arrangements!

I decided to  transfer the red roses into this ceramic vase and placed it on the wood top by the stairs and kitchen area.  The roses took on a whole new look in this vase!

Sunday morning I was prepping the table as our daughter made breakfast.  I chose these placemats to play up the colors in the arrangements.  If you read my tablescape post I had shared the Creme brûlée French toast but those plans got nixed, and we decided on blueberry pancakes, scrambled eggs and sea-salt bacon!

I used a syrup I found at T.J. Maxx which consists of Vermont Maple Syrup, infused with caramel and sea-salt and it was delightful on the pancakes.

I staged the table with both floral arrangements.

After breakfast I decided that son's arrangement would stay in the kitchen. 

I moved daughter's arrangement to the mantel which graced it beautifully.

I've been blessed with some gorgeous tulips now for the past two weeks. 

Spring has come on in full force and I'm loving each minute of it! 
My gardens are coming alive and I do occasional posts on my other blog Sit With Me In My Garden

Have a great week!

May 11, 2017

For Mom With Love (T)

Mother's Day Brunch
 I'll start with these beautiful roses- love the two tone coloring.  I selected them because they have the same vibrant red color that is found in the floral part of the placemats used with today's tablescape.

 Next I am showing the two sides of the butterfly placemats that I decided to use.

 I wanted this to be cheerful and Mom loves blue so I made sure there was plenty of blue on the table! 

 I used a semi-transparent white glass dish to elevate the dinner and salad plates.

 Mom has always liked a casual country look in the kitchen so that was what I wanted to create.  I'll start with some cut up pieces of strawberries and melons chunks.  Then we can have the Creme' Brulee French Toast (recipe below) that I've made a few times.  I'll add some bacon (mom loves) and sausages.  Orange juice and coffee (we love coffee).

 I like the look of both sides of the placemats and part way through creating this tablescape I decided to switch to two of each showing.

A pair of birds dropped in to see if there are any leftover crumbs!

This vase is hand blown and I love the ruffled edge.

The narrow neck of the vase helps keep flowers standing tall.  I used the baby's breath that came with the roses as a filler along the ruffled edge.

I like to put the napkins in the drinking glass because of how it adds some drama and draws your eyes up. 
Can you see how the tealights are glowing through the glass at the bottom of the vase!  I didn't really need tealights for this table but I like the special affects they add!
Well- that's a wrap!

 For Mom With Love

 Thank you for joining me and I am
Wishing You All a Happy Mother's Day

I'll be joining:
Tablescape Thursday 

Today's players:
Blue dishes- Devon Cottage by Johnson Brothers
White salad plate-  no brand label- only says Made in Portugal- from One King's Lane
White semi-opaque glass dishes found at T.J. Maxx 2 years ago
Flatware called Baroque found at Neiman Marcus several years ago- discontinued
Placemats from Kohl's
Stemware-  Napoleonic Bee Wine Glass by LaRochere
Glass Vase from One King's Lane several years ago
Tablecloth- Tommy Hillfiger found at Home Goods a while back

 Printable version from my Google recipe page: Creme Brulee French Toast
Note:This is a rich sweet recipe- you don't need additional syrup since it forms a sugary layer at the bottom when it bakes.  Don't underbake otherwise it can be mushy.  Use a bakery style loaf of bread not a standard bread loaf.

Crème Brûlée French Toast


  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • an 8- to 9-inch round loaf country-style bread
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon Grand Marnier
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


In a small heavy saucepan melt butter with brown sugar and corn syrup over moderate heat, stirring, until smooth and pour into a 13- by 9- by 2-inch baking dish. Cut six 1-inch thick slices from center portion of bread, reserving ends for another use, and trim crusts. Arrange bread slices in one layer in baking dish, squeezing them slightly to fit.
In a bowl whisk together eggs, half-and-half, vanilla, Grand Marnier, and salt until combined well and pour evenly over bread. Chill bread mixture, covered, at least 8 hours and up to 1 day.
Preheat oven to 350° F. and bring bread to room temperature.
Bake bread mixture, uncovered, in middle of oven until puffed and edges are pale golden, 35 to 40 minutes.
Serve hot French toast immediately.


Welcome to Home and Gardening With Liz. I have combined my previous blogs “Infuse With Liz” and “Sit With Me In My Garden” into this new blog. I love interior decorating and gardening. I enjoy redefining interior spaces by moving things around and reusing decorative items already found in the home. I also enjoy creating tablescapes and an occasional crafting project. I'm so pleased you've stopped by. I invite you to follow me and I do hope you will keep coming back! Liz
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