Spring Cleaning

I just thought I would take this opportunity to point something out to you. You know how all of thespring magazines and catalogs show fabulous pictures of gorgeous outdoor rooms you can create outside your lean to? I am here to tell you that every single one of those rooms looks like it does on those glossy pages for all of about two days. A week if you are lucky. The reality is, mother nature always wins out. We live "inside" for one very important reason. It is much cleaner than living "outside". When I created my gardens, gardening had not hit the USA much yet. I had trouble finding gardening shops. I found most of my stuff at hardware stores. I have ten outdoor rooms on my property. One room was decorated with custom furniture handmade from Chinese Bittersweet. Guaranteed to last for quite a while outside especially if it was covered during winter. It cost a small fortune. It lasted one year. Another room is decorated with cement faux bois furniture. I haven't uncovered it yet from this last winter but I am scared about what I will find when I do so this year. Every year it becomes a little smaller due to cement cracking off of the substructure. Does anyone out there know how to repair faux bois? I think it is time to call Martha.

As I started to clean my patio area yesterday, I thought I would take pictures to show you what spring cleaning is all about on the outside. You might have to click to enlarge the pics but there is so much dirt and debris behind the wire and wooden shelves that i think I could plant a small garden behind my sink.

Hey...chow chow! I could use a little help over here.

Wait mama, did you say spring cleaning?

I think I will just stay right here. I like watching better.

Finally I removed all of the decorations and then literally needed a small shovel to get the dirt out of the corners on the sink top.

Then it took about 45 minutes to remove each little leaf that was stuck in the wire shelves.

The fun part was redecorating it after it was cleaned. It still looks rather bleak but once things start turning green and I can fill some planters, everything will brighten up.

I forgot to take a totally 'before' picture of the potting table. It was really a mess. No matter what I do, I can't keep mud from forming under the table.

And look who settled in for a nap AFTER the first area was finished?

These are the only chickens you will see in my gardens this year.

The little robin I found at the thrift store the other day has found a home in my bird feeder.

I use reindeer moss inside the birdcage to add a bit of color.

I must admit it is a lot of fun decorating outside.

I use this old indoor plant stand to hold a collection of thrift shop ceramic birds.

Now just nine more rooms to go.


Melynda said…
I love your outdoor rooms! I am working to get a couple in my own small backyard. That and a solid built roof overhang so that there is still someplace to go and get fresh air when it rains. I think this is important, and besides I want it!
Pricilla said…
It looks great. All that hard work paid off. I don't suppose you want to come hoe out a goat pen.
9 more rooms to go! Yikes! With all this outdoor room cleaning, you have, have, have to have a house-cleaning service. For the inside.

Oh and please be aware, that I am not using my today's-sig line, in your blog. 'Cause I know it would not be welcome. -giggles-

Instead, I'll say "Happy 5 1/2 Months To Go, Till Autumn"!!! :-)
See! This is what I'm leaving in everyone else's blog!!!

♥ Happy Vernal Equinox ♥
Autumnforest said…
I absolutely love seeing the seasons in your gardens. I'm not even sure which is my favorite. When it's lush and green, I think I would live in it day and night. When autumn comes, it's soooo striking. I love it covered in snow and ice. But, then, springtime's first little blooms are sooooo adorable. Okay, okay, I guess with a name like mine, I have to pick autumn.
Anonymous said…
Even though it felt like spring here today I won´t do anything in my garden for yet a week or two. Besides I only have one place to clean and then I´ll do the flower beds, that´s all :-)

Have a great day now!
Mystica said…
The big rooster is gorgeous!
Rosemary said…
Your creativity never ceases to amaze me. Happy spring cleaning. now where is my broom?
Jill said…
You blog is delightful and I love seeing all of your wonderful gardens. What state do you live in with all of your wonderful thrift finds?
Thanks for sharing all that you do!
Jill B.
Kathy said…
I love this! I have hopes of turning my faery garden into something nice but for now it's just weeds and a couple of plastic chairs. You're definitely inspiring me though.
9 more rooms !!!!!

love looking at your garden...teddy looks so cute...that face :-)

no gardening here today...unless i did it from a rowboat....i think i'll bake instead...


Happy First Day of Spring
Kary and Teddy
Okay, you have motivated me to do a little more yard work, tomorrow. It is never ending, but I'm not complaining. Anything is better than snow.
Holt House said…
Love your rooms, still snow on the ground here in MN but I'll be sure to get some inspiration from you when it finally melts!
Teddy's the boss. Bosses don't work. Sheesh, where you been?
Robin Larkspur said…
Arghhh! Spring Cleaning! I'm with Teddy on that! lol. I love love love your robin!!
Mina said…
Your outdoor rooms are so beautiful! Don't worry, King is no help to em either. He just pants and looks the other way. He and Teddy should get together to see who is the best at watching mamma work.
Jennifer Rose said…
teddy has the right idea :p

i love how no matter how long I stare at the pics of your garden I always find some new little object I've never noticed before :D
Raven said…
Looks like you got a lot done! Spring is a fun time of year, what with all the growing things and flowers, but I could do without all the work it takes to get things in order. Even in Texas, we get lots of mud and dust and debris that builds up. By the way, I know just where you got that lovely blue witch sign you've got in your garden stand; I've had my eye on one of her creations for months now.
Everything look wonderful! Isn't it a great feeling?
I do appreciate how much work it is to keep one garden area long ago. I cannot begin to imagine all the outdoor rooms you have.

One day you will down size. You do a find job with decorating.

Thank you for sharing!


xoxo to "Teddy Spring Cleaning Supervisor Chow-Chow".
Love your outdoor decorating. It sure is a lot of work. But anything worth while usually is.
Sharon Lovejoy said…
Dear Teddy,

You have the right idea. Sit back and supervise, and when the area is clean enough to be livable, well, just curl up and snooze. She can probably keep working without your supervision. After all, it is her fault that there is so much stuff to clean...right?

Happy dreaming doggone it,

floweringmama said…
Wow, what a job! And you have 9 more to go?? Yikes! It's all I can do to keep the inside clean much less the outside.
SharleneT said…
Now, I really feel like a slacker! I'm still doing basic landscaping around the front, this year, and just have two "room" in the back and, yes, winter takes its toll.

This week should be great weather for sprucing up. You're doing a fine job. Can't wait for the end results of all nine rooms.

Come visit when you can...
idrawpix said…
Jaz, I would use Apoxie Sculpt for repairing the cement faux bois. It is a 2-part mixture of apoxy that you can mix up to the amount you need. It is weather/freeze proof and paintable, if necessary, although the paint may have weather/freeze issues.
It just may be stronger than the faux bois itself!
taylorsoutback said…
Love all your outdoor areas and I was also wondering about all those magazine images with picture perfect potting areas and outdoor living spaces. When we built my potting shed, it was intended to be just that so "housekeeping" is part of the season...very rarely to I have time to even sit down on the wicker loveseat...but it sure looks cute!

Great blog with wonderful pictures and ideas!
Mama's Thyme said…
Love, love, love! I found a cute little ceramic chickadee at our Goodwill and my first thought was, "This is so Jaz!" LOL
Tournesol said…
What a great yard to play with!
My Grama's Soul said…
Oh dear lady...I DON'T know how how you do it all! With all the cleaning and cooking...I do hope you rest now and then. LOL LOL