Friday, April 4, 2014

Warm up in a greenhouse.

When we lived in Wisconsin I was spoiled with a fabulous garden center that was open year round very close by. On a dreary winter day when I longing for spring I could go roam up and down the aisles and drool over their plants, watch the fish in the koi pond. It was so wonderfully warm and humid in there, like therapy it washed away the winter blues just enough to get me through another week.
Where we live in Minnesota I have to drive much further for this experience. My choice place, though 30-40 minutes or so from me, is Green Valley Garden Center in Anoka. I had not been since November, so when my 35th birthday came at the end of March, and it was still wintery outside, I dragged my whole family up there for some much needed spring-piration.
I can be sure I leave GVGC with ideas galore. I always take pictures! Of course, I had to share so I could bring y'all along with me...
How great is the repetition here? I love the birdhouses as planters, too.
Stepping back for a wider shot you can see how they creative they are! Look at all the wonderfully different containers at work here- metal buckets, concrete, and terra cotta- with cottagey white metal plant stands. Harmoniously. PS. Those wreaths are bird seed!
This cactus display makes me want to buy multiples of the same kind and stagger them just like this-in what looks like a rain gutter propped up by bird bark, and an old window:
Just beside this rain gutter was an even larger repetitive display of cacti I loved; I also can't get enough of the concrete looking planter they cacti are in:  
Just a few feet away I was smitten with this door and the perfectly placed branch in front it. How great is the funnel planter begging for a crazy cactus like dog tail or rats tail? I also see a pallet used here, and the amazing old chair:
Step back and you see an amazing container filled with succulents and a great old chair turned container holder. Gimme more! 
A closer look at the chair: 
This funnel was planted with a dripping pea vine and more. Love it! Specifically I love the mix of metals here- bronzey, chrome-silvery, galvanized all working together with pallet wood, birch bark, moss.
If I'm going to go home and try and emulate something, I always make sure to look at the details. I loved, loved, loved this little gem: see how they used the big birch log to make the table's feet- very informally filling the gap with a chunk of moss? Genious. I can do that. I think the wall even looks like the inside of my garage door...
Here's another pallet idea I liked. They affixed a moss basket right to it. I like this "hanging" free in the middle of the air like this- would look cool hanging from a tree, or in between the posts of a gazebo for privacy.
And while we're on the topic of vertical gardening, this succulent wall hanging is too perfect. The little piece of fungi at the bottom is THE BEST.
It was warm enough inside the green house to not mind getting splashed by this fountain.  I love how the hanging baskets encircle it at just the right height. In a perfect world, I would have this fountain in my front yard, and hang little containers (don't these resemble broken walnuts?!?) from the tree above it.
 Sometimes its the details I take pictures of. This huge wreath makes such a great statement- I have a wreath similar to this, and have never figured out to incorporate it into my garden. I bought years ago when our old house was large enough to hang it as a Christmas wreath swathed in white lights at the roof line. Now I'm thinking it belongs dangling above a container garden somewhere. My thoughts also wandered back to a huge piece of farm equipment-the same shape- I passed on last year at a yard sale- it would make an profound statement like this, placed just right in the garden to frame something... I kept telling myself I'd have to "do" something with it, when in reality just positioning it right as a frame would have been great.
 My garden color of choice has always been blue, so I was a total sucker for these hanging pots, the blue screen above (with the whimsical cat perfectly placed!!), cool blue cabinet, and those crocks on the floor--- they have blue birds on them!
Moving on...  
I love so much about this russet hued area of the garden. I love how the earth tones make the green pop. The owls are awesome.  The rooster in the container surrounded by the fresh green makes me want to pull all my philodendrons outside into the shade and place them around my garden statuary. I also like the lanterns hanging, and the wire orb candle holders.
I sure did squeak out loud when I saw this old tub mounted on the wall of old wood. Don't have a barn door or wall to create this look? Make a faux barn wall! Yes! And while you're at it, mount that rusty crusty old galvanized tub on it. Oh, and those beautiful blue hanging pots come in this mushroom color, too. I brought home one of those birds nests ferns.
This may have been my favorite thing there that day. This old huge bath tub? Who would have thought to put to two dog statues in it, and surround them with succulents? I love it!
I had to take this picture to remind myself to put my rabbits foot ferns in similar hanging baskets. While at Menards this spring I saw some moss covered hanging baskets I loved, and this is the perfect plant for them.
I always love the premade succulent arrangements they have, too.  
This is just one of the tables full of succulents...  
Here is my bounty for the day- I already had the containers, so the plants are what I brought home:  
Hope you enjoyed coming to garden center with me. Now I'll be watching the snow fall here... drinking coffee with my sketch book planning for warmer days.
Happy gardening! 

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