Garden

Simple Summer Lavender Wreath

Monday, June 20th, 2011

Happy Monday everyone, hope you had a fantastic weekend!  We built a 12’ x 12’ cabana on Saturday on our patio and I can’t believe how great it looks!  I’ll show you the whole space later this week, I’ve just got to pull it all together and snap a few pics. 

We spent Sunday in Sonoma, lounging in the Plaza, bliss I tell you.  Balmy and perfect.  The kids ended up a little bronzer and we had a relaxing time, strolling around and popping into a favorite tasting room.  I meant to write about this lavender wreath last night but then got caught up in past episodes of Million Dollar Decorators and could not avert my eyes.  Some peeps are very self absorbed and completely out of touch!  But it makes for great television, I admit I am hooked. 

There are few things in the garden I love more than lavender, so last week I harvested a few plants and crafted a front door wreath.  Here it hangs from my trusty Command hook, so natural and fragrant.

kates lavender front door wreath

 

For a simple summer wreath like this one, you’ll need a craft floral ring, floral wire, wire cutters, ribbon, and clippers for your stems (not shown).  I used the 18” craft ring, which requires lavender from 3-4 mature plants.  I imagine you could make the 12” version with 2-3 plants.  Be sure to cut the lavender 12-15” from the top.

lavender wreath supplies

 

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Lavender Lemonade

Friday, June 17th, 2011

Yes, there is another reason why I love June.  June is when the bees start buzzing because like me, they are drawn to nature’s perfect perennial: lavender.  June is the month when (at last!) my French lavender plants are finally ready for harvest.  

bee on french lavender

I wait patiently all year for these few weeks in June, and I do my best each season to create something new with my two dozen French lavender plants.  I’ve baked cakes and stitched linen eye pillows in the past.  This week, I made lavender lemonade and a summer wreath.   More on the wreath next week, but meanwhile . . .    

Don’t you love lemonade? 

Could anything define summer more than this beverage?  I think only iced tea could compete, but there is something about that taste of citrus poured over ice that forces one to pause and appreciate the simple pleasures of summer.

lavender lemonade cg

 

How to Make Lavender Lemonade

Combine ¾ cup of water with ½ cup of sugar in a saucepan.  Bring to a low boil and stir until sugar dissolves, remove from heat.  Add 3-4 organic lavender buds to heated sugar water mixture and allow to cool for 10 minutes. 

Prepare frozen lemonade as directed, minus 1 cup of water.  Remove lavender buds from sugar mixture, then pour sugar water into prepared lemonade and add fresh slices of lemon.  

For color (optional), mix ¼ cup of water with one drop of blue food coloring and one drop of red food coloring. 

 

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Recycled Wine Barrel Planter

Monday, June 6th, 2011

I know this happens to you.  You see something in a catalog or online and you think to yourself, “I bet I could make that for less money” or “I think I could pull off a similar version, but give it my own twist”.   That’s just what happened when I spied the tiered recycled wine barrel planter in the Napa Style catalog for $299.

As I mentioned yesterday, wine barrels are readily accessible where I’m from, and we can find them for as little as $20 a half barrel.  (If you’re local, make a stop at Mission ACE on Highway 12, they’ll hook you up!)

After we scored a few half barrels last week from our favorite source, the mister and I decided to build our own rustic planter, and for much less than the Napa Style version.  Like, $274 dollars less.

kates tiered recycled wine barrel planter

Napa Style barrel planter, $299.

CG barrel planter, $25.

barrel side by side

 

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