Thursday, July 31, 2014

Fairy Gardens

I have been inside most of the week. I did manage to get some garden work done on Monday, mostly weeding and planting plants that I hadn't gotten in before they totally died.  I cannot believe how quickly weed seeds germinate. I also pruned back the clematis. Indeed it had smothered out the little supermarket rose that had the sweetest little white roses. Two stalks remain, so I hope they help the plant come back. I could hear Gertrude take a heavy breath of fresh air once I pulled away the vine that covered her. Telepathically I could her scolding me for being so neglectful in letting a lowly vine nearly strangle the life out of her. I apologized profusely. Out loud. Still more work to be done. Always. We have had rain--a lot of rain. Inches.

Rather typical to have rain this time of summer, but not so much, nearly 2 inches. Again parts of the state are flooded, not like last summer, but under water, none the less. As the Head Gardener remarked making note of the last 4 years of drought, we prefer rain. The Garden Spot sparkles in the early morning sunlight, the lawn heavy with dew drops.

Last Saturday I took the girls on a fairy garden tour. Our favorite garden center Bath Nursery sponsored the first Northern Colorado Fairy Garden Tour that included six gardens. We missed both the Greeley and Ft. Collins garden tours earlier in June because of the family reunion, so I was excited to get out and tramp around other peoples' yards. Let me share the gardens with you:

Garden 1: The Mountain Sage School

Just off of a busy street hidden by trees, barely visible from road, travelers see a community garden aside a parking lot for an office complex of buildings. We don't know who tends the grown-up garden, but school children have built several little fairy gardens tucked next to the fences, using mostly what they find in nature.

We wondered through the rest of the garden. The broccoli was absolutely amazing.

 Garden 2: The Geller House (you can read about the Geller House here)

A center for those with special needs, the Geller Center's mission is to "provide a safe place for development of the spirit within the whole person. . . ." This little garden in the front of the center in a small place began this spring. It is an amazing little garden with lots of whimsy.

This was my favorite little spot in the garden. A garden within a garden. These gardeners went to great detail to create a fairy village. What better way to nurture the human spirit than to garden?

Garden 3: A Grandmother and her grandchildren have turned the backyard into an enchanted forest full of creatures, surprises, and pure fantasy. 

One cute fairy serves mini treats and cool lemonade. While the day was coolish, the lemonade was refreshing. 

Giant toad stools make a nice place to sit a spell.

Giraffes hide behind lush forest.

An unusual fountain tucked away in a corner, simply a large stone with a hole drilled for trickling water.

Carolyn, the grandmother, had many little vignettes featuring different little themes. We liked this one with the big dragon. Now we are on the look-out for dragons at the thrift stores. 

We loved this little house with the ladder.

A fairy cute Fairy Bear. 

I loved this giraffe. 

Froggy croaks when anyone passes by, perhaps warning the fairies within of intruders? He was a classic touch. This garden was lush with wonderful plant material. She uses strawberries as ground cover. I like that, so I planted six of my bargain strawberries in the center garden to cover a bare spot (one of many bare spots.) We visited with Carolyn a bit. Such a sweet lady with a passion for gardening and love of fairies. We loved that the grandchildren worked with her.

Garden 4: The Smith's Garden

PomPom would love this garden filled with gnomes. This garden has a magical mining theme.

in the border of an immaculately groomed lawn, a variety of planters hold the little garden vignettes. Each detailed and perfect.

More dragons. So cute. See the little gnome climbing down the ladder in the old mining car. 

Who would think that a mining theme in a  garden would work? I love this coal bucket with marigolds. Hey, I think I  have my mom's coal bucket out in the barn.

The gnomes are mining for rose quartz. The quartz stones sort of blend in with the gravel mulch in the photo, but it is cool stuff.

Garden 5: A Garden with a lakeside view: These have taken over a MacInstosh apple tree where they nurture the tree all year long. 

With a view of the walking path and lake behind the home, this tree is the prefect place for fairies to take up living. Full of fanciful creatures in a unique setting, the little village inspires visitors to want to go home to see if any of their trees would be suitable for fairy life.

But the biggest surprise in this garden grabbed my attention the second I entered the gate, for there was this statue. I had seen it before.

At the Denver Botanical Gardens another statue takes center stage in a small garden, a girl and a frog.  I commented to the home's gardener that I had seen the same statue at the the DBG. He said they were aware of that statue but had never seen it. Their's had belonged to the wife's grandmother and because the granddaughter had the yard, she inherited the boy statue. There are just these two. The grandmother had  her's for years. Wouldn't you just love to know the rest of the story? 

There was a sixth garden on down the road, too far we felt to drive to Loveland to see it; we were assured that it was a garden not be missed. 

The day ended back at the nursery where the little girls and grandma bought little fairy tokens to remember our day together. The girls each have their own fairy garden in old wash tubs that they plant each year. I hope they got some good ideas for not just the fairies, but for creative planning and planting.

Back to reality here. While there is still plenty of summer left and gardening to do, some how I am winding down. We have another family picnic in another week, so the yard will have to be spiffed up. Actually this is the best the garden has looked since we moved here. The hard work is beginning to pay off. The vegetable garden is another story.

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed the fairy garden tour. We sure had a lot of fun. Oh and thanks for stopping by Ann's Dollhouse Dreams. I have done a lot of work on one dollhouse. I'll update  in the next few days. As the week end approaches, I wish you a happy one.


  1. What a lovely idea. People must have had so much pleasure from looking at these very different gardens.

  2. My how I enjoyed this tour of fairy gardens with you! I've been creating them in our backyard for years and now that they're a hot trend, so many more things are available, and to scale.
    I even gleaned some ideas to improve my displays which will be fun to implement.
    Wasn't the young lady in her fairy wings a treat to see?

  3. I bet the kids just love this!! And good grief, look at that broccoli.

  4. Oh, I loved the fairy garden tour! Now I want to create a fairy garden, even if just in an old coal bucket. I have my grandmother's one, too. I must start looking for a little fairy to live in my garden! Maybe sometime you will show us the fairy gardens your granddaughters have created.

  5. Your outing sounds and looks lovely Ann! The girls must have loved it!

    Wishing you a happy weekend!

    Madelief x

  6. The fairy garden tour sounds like fun & looks like fun. I like all the gardens but really found interesting things (just a wee bit different) in the last two gardens.

  7. Too fun Ann. Our local nursery had sold little fairy gardens and I was very tempted to get one, now I wish I had.

  8. I'm not sure people do fairy gardens in the UK - so it was interesting to see the variety of themes - I bet the girls enjoyed the tour

  9. Fairy gardens that must have been fun for the girls, including you. As far as I know we don't have fairy gardens here, never seen before. It's certainly interesting and a great day out.

  10. Hi Ann! Oh, I LOVE the fairy gardens! Yes, I love the mine garden with the cute gnomes, too! Magic Cabin (a catalog and web site with lovely things) has the cutest mine, complete with buckets and different levels. We wish it wasn't so expensive!
    What a nice granny you are! Lovely post!

  11. What a unique and adventureous garden. Someone has a great's adorable.


  12. Hi Ann,

    Thank you for featuring the Geller Center ( in your post, and for the lovely photos. Do you mind if we use them on our website? We were having so much fun that day that we forgot to take them. We would, of course, credit you when we put them up.

    Also, I wanted to share a quick correction. The Geller Center is a safe place for all people to develop their spiritual lives, and we have a special focus on being that safe, nurturing place for CSU students. We are welcoming and open to people of all abilities, ethnicities, sexualities and gender orientations.

    Thanks again for featuring us!
    peace and blessings,
    Laura Nelson
    Assistant Director