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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Colours of Summer

What's It Wednesday #31

In addition to enjoying indoor vintage urban design in the home, I absolutely adore the outdoor designs created by nature. Come join me on my many summer journeys.

The Amazonian Zebra plant is a gorgeous bromeliad in the yard or in nature. 


Bromeliads placed on a large tree branch are a fun way to grow them in the yard. There are over 5000 species of bromeliads and I love the variety of colour. I have to admit though, my favorite bromeliad is the pineapple. 


My quest for beautiful colours of summer takes me to many wonderful places during this time. One of my favorite hangouts is Everglades National Park. This Cabbage Palm, also known as the Sabal Palm, is the official state tree for the state of Florida. I found this beauty as I was hiking through a wonderful tropical hammock a few days ago. 

Although I am not crazy about cactus, I find this one in particular fascinating and is my absolute favorite. This lovely fellow resides in Fort Jefferson in the Dry Tortugas, which is located about 70 miles west of Key West. I imagine a bird leaving the seedling on the island as it was in transit. The seed grew into this beauty that grows along the walls of this amazing fort. 

During my summer hikes I found this beautiful button bush blooms. The blooms look like wonderful pen cushions.


After a trip to Maui, I told my husband that gingers were a must in our garden. I think they are quite romantic.

Cycads are one of the most ancient of plants on planet Earth. These hardy fellows were around during the days of the dinosaurs. I love them because they are extremely hardy and resist most pests and diseases.


The scientist in me allows the princess in me to venture out and hike in the swamps of Big Cypress Natural Preserve. I am absolutely fascinated by these cypress knees. Cypress knees is a term used to describe these structures that form near the base of beautiful cypress trees. Although their true function is unknown it is thought that perhaps their structure is used to oxygenate the roots of the large cypress trees. 


Viewing these majestic cypress trees are well worth the fight through the mosquitoes and sweltering heat. 

Some times hanging out in nature yields wonderful design ideas. These epiphytes were perfectly arranged on this large branch and adds just the right amount of texture. I think I will do the same in my yard.


Nature has a way of adding just the right colour for the garden. This inflorescence looked wonderful in a national park so I figured it would be a perfect fit in the yard. I love being inspired by nature. Don't you?


Although the air plant to the tree is fascinating my love is for the  whitish, green patches on the tree.  It's actually not a part of the bark at all. These are lichen which is a combination of fungi and algae. It natures own graffiti of color. 

The central part of the state of Florida is known for it's majestic live oaks. My favorite part of these gorgeous trees are the moss that swing gently in the summer breeze. 

Heliconias come in up to 200 species and all of them are just gorgeous. The colours vary like the rainbow and their structures are natures perfect design. 

This mangrove is one of many that belong to the 10,000 Islands of South Florida's west coast. 


Even some of the insects of summer add wonderful colour to a garden. This Milkweed bug dines on the blooms of the Milkweed plant. 


I enjoy the beautiful orchids found in the wild that I encounter on my weekly summer hikes. Warm humid environments are the perfect place for these beauties to thrive. I also enjoy them in a private garden. There are so many beautiful varieties, you can never become bored of them. 


 


Staghorns are the king of the garden and are my favorite fern. They are so strong and appear to be quite regal in the garden and in the wild. They aren't very picky, they will grow on a tree or a rock.


This beauty is my favorite lily. The alligator lily is also known as the spider lily. Although I cannot grow them in my yard, I can visit them in their own habitat which is in the outer edges of cypress swamps. When this fragrant flower blooms, I know summer is here.  

What is your favorite summer flower, bush, or tree and where do you find it?

xoxoxo
Paula


Thank you all for participating in our "What's It Wednesday"  linky party!


Don't forget to grab a feature button.

Ivy and Elephants



 Thank you all for all that you do to inspire others!
 I know I am inspired each and every week by each and every one of you.

Here are this week's WONDERFUL  features
This vintage tub over at Chateau Chic is the perfect addition to any garden. 

You must visit Mile High Beach at Creating Wonderful Places

This stair and bannister is an amazing transformation over at Decor Niche

It is Summer Time over at Shabby Sweet Cottage

Nothing says summer like a beautiful peony from The Headmistress

This card catalogue redo is a must see at West Furniture Revival


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Lemons to Lemonade

What's It Wednesday #30

I love checking out other blogs for ideas and inspiration. On one such trip to “Le Petit Cabinet de Curiosites”, she showed a gorgeous old oil and vinegar cruet that she was selling. It was pretty, but I didn’t really “need it”, until… she said, ‘I use them in the bathroom for shampoo and conditioner’. LIGHTBULB!!! I suddenly needed it in the worst way! Sadly, it was already sold, and I was broken hearted. So I hopped on eBay and searched for weeks, but couldn't find one with that tarnished and ornate look I was seeking. Finally, my heart skipped a beat, there it was, an exact match, except… it only had one bottle L. I bought it anyway, hoping to find another bottle to match. After several failed attempts, I knew it would probably never happen, so I started thinking outside the box.

LIGHTBULB!!! Mouthwash in the bottle, a pretty etched glass, and use the stopper holder ring to hold the toothbrush. “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”.
Hugs,

Patti


And thank you all for participating in our "What's It Wednesday" Linky Party!

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Ivy and Elephants 




Here are this week’s features:

La Vie Quotidienne


My Salvaged Treasures


With a Dash of Color


Miss Kopy Kat


Daisy Mae Belle


Forever Decorating!


Come show off your whatchamacallits, what is its, what it once was, and "hey, look what I just did" posts. In other words, what you created, organized, designed or re-designed, found, purchased, transformed, inherited, repurposed, renovated, are selling, or giving-away.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Summer Whites

What's It Wednesday # 29

Now that it is officially summer, we can bring out those crisp and pristine summer whites. Summer is when I pull out the white linen clothing and white home accessories. 

This double sided gravy boat is used for tasty summer salsas like mango, tomato or cucumber and light sauces for pastas. So nice and refreshing.


Some of my favorite operas and musicals seem to arrive just in time for summer. These antique mother-of-pearl Lemaire opera glasses from Paris are just the item needed when Les Miserable and Phantom of the Opera come to town.

Summer means bringing out all of the elements of a beautiful summer day. This includes summer dinner ware. My son gets to sport his Ralph Lauren earthenware as the perfect accent to a summer outdoor dinner party. 

Flowers on porcelain seem to fair much better than the flowers in my garden. No watering, pruning, or fertilizing necessary. 

 I would give anything to grow such a perfect rose. So in the mean time I will stick to porcelain ones. Although they are fragile, they have survived much longer then their real counter parts out in the garden. 

For as long as I can remember I have always wanted a Secretary desk in the bedroom next to the bed in lieu of a nightstand. The base of the desk has four drawers that I use like a nightstand. My favorite part is the top part which is a book case with glass doors. Twice a year I switch it up a bit. For the summer I bring out the summer whites. 

One of my absolute favorite pieces in the Secretary is this antique shaving mug. Gentlemen commonly used them between 1870 and 1920. 


The seller of this wonderful shaving mug listed it as a tea strainer. So needless to say, I got it for a song...in fact I am still singing.

The rose vase, antique mustard pot and flowered pitcher are surrounded by some of my favorite silver pieces. There is something about silver and white that makes me think of clean, fresh, elegance. 

This white porcelain pitcher and bowl with tropical flowers were the perfect addition to the slant top desk. Oh these flowers are inspiring me to be a better gardener. We shall see about that.

What are some of your favorite summer whites?

xoxoxo
Paula

Thank you all for participating in our "What's It Wednesday"  linky party!
Don't forget to grab a feature button.


Ivy and Elephants



 Thank you all for all that you do to inspire others!
 I know I am inspired each and every week by each and every one of you.

Here are this week's WONDERFUL  features



A Lapin Life's beautiful French tray...a must see

Wait until you see what A Delightsome Life did with a bed skirt

Nothing says summer like the beautiful Stafford tea set from Art, Books, Tea...she got for a song

This lovely piece of art was made with so much love. Hvala Biljana za ovaj prekrasan komad umjetnosti.

Elaine of Creating Wonderful Spaces painted a beautiful garden with pink 

This Old Secretary received a beautiful make-over at Living on Cypress Hill


Come show off your whatchamacallitswhat is itswhat it once was, and "hey, look what I just did" posts. In other words, what you created, organized, designed or re-designed, found, purchased, transformed, inherited, repurposed, renovated, are selling, or giving-away.
 Please be sure to do the following for us: 
  1. Provide a link back to your post (not your main blog url).
  2. Feel free to copy and paste our party button on your sidebar. This way other fabulous folks can join in the fun as well.
  3. Mix and mingle by visiting the other party people and show them some love (leave a sweet comment).
  4. Don't forget to leave us a comment as well. We love hearing from you!

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Gratitude is the Memory of the Heart ~ French Proverb ~ We are so grateful that you stopped by ~ Please visit again soon! ~ Much Love, Patricia and Paula