No longer content with a lawn chair and a pot of geraniums, homeowners are taking their creativity to the great outdoors to turn their yards into unique works of art.
Whether you have a decades old garden you are looking to spruce up or a home with little landscaping you are ready to enhance, the question on your mind is most likely, where do I start?
Lawn and garden shops are the simplest way to find everything you need to beautify your outdoor space. But on the downside, they can be pricey and since they sell in bulk you may very well look over the fence and see your neighbor has made the same purchase. Feeling adventurous? Read on.
Start with what you have on hand. Your garage may hold garden treasures you have not considered. Old galvanized buckets, tubs and watering cans, step ladders, iron beds and even the drawers from an old dresser can be turned into great outdoor decor. For some clever ideas for repurposing the treasures hiding in your storage visit Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/mbegeal/garden-decoration-ideas. I found more than 50 ways to use a simple flowerpot…who knew?
Set aside a day to visit an architectural salvage yard in the area. Trellises, urns, bird houses, lattice work and unusual architectural pieces found here have been reclaimed from demolition sites and tend to be one-of-a-kind. In Indianapolis we have a number of great facilities. Doc’s Salvage and Reclamation at 1325 W. 30th, Audrey’s Place at 3228 E. 10th St. and Tim and Julie’s Another Fine Mess at 2901 E. 10th Street are my personal favorites. For our readers who enjoy a trip to the country, check out the pop-up shop located at 291 E. Two Cent Road in Bargersville called, “Small Town Salvage.”
Antique malls abound with ideas for your porches and gardens. Throw away the rule book on this one. What about an old iron gate for a trellis, a bridge lamp skeleton to hold a hanging plant, or a small wheelbarrow turned on its side and filled with dirt to use in place of a flower bed? Porch pots, wicker and iron furniture, old porch swings, rockers, and screen doors in “gently used” condition are also common stock items and can often be found for a fraction of the price you will pay for new.
The experts at HGTV recommend establishing a theme for your garden to prevent a disheveled look. While randomness is a part of the beauty of nature, there is a fine line between an eclectic look and “Wow, those people need to clean their yard.” One way to set a theme is by starting with a centerpiece. From the serenity of a Victorian angel to the Gothic appeal of a gargoyle, statuary makes an excellent choice. If statues are not to your taste, try a birdbath or a fountain. These provide a contrast in texture to your plants while providing a cool drink for our little feathered friends during the hot summer months. Ever money conscious, I keep an eye out for old concrete pieces at estate sales where, due to the difficulty in moving them, they can often be had for a few dollars. Last year I picked up a large urn and a statue for $5!
The best gardens are those that are shared. Years ago I sat an antique park bench in my backyard flower garden. My husband retreats to that old bench to read. It has been the resting place for several teenage suitors while they waited for my daughter to finish “getting ready” and my grandsons love to sit on Grandma’s bench to watch for the bunny rabbits and butterflies that visit the garden. Benches, gliders, and small iron bistro sets incorporated into your yard invite others to stop and enjoy the beauty of your handiwork and the peace that can only be found, in a garden. Until next time……..Linda
Linda Kennett is a professional liquidation consultant specializing in down-sizing for seniors and the valuation of estates and may be reached at 317-258-7835 or firstname.lastname@example.org