The Petty Gardens


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I’ve been wanting to post again, and I even posted about the Cabin Blitz, but I kept it private because I knew that Emily would want to post about it.  I will say that it was an amazing week, and Emily’s surprise was worth every bit of work!  While I only fed the work crew and kept the house in some semblance of order, the workers all said it was indeed worth the work to see the blessing it brought her.  With Bill working sometimes 70+ hours at his real job, and Bub working all hours, it’s really been tough to get that kind of work done on the cabin.  So with some creative working hours, and one sick day (he was legitimately sick with a stomach bug, but worked on the cabin anyway) the Cabin Blitz was on!  Most folks that read my blog also read Emily’s, so I will go on to something new.


About three years ago, Bill and Nathanael built me a patio – I like to call it my veranda.  Bill was given some patio stones, and we had lots of old brick, so they laid out a place for me to have a sort of Retreat.  My pictures don’t do it justice, so I didn’t even put them on here.   Normal folks would wonder how in the world I could think it is beautiful with all the stuff from all of Bill’s “collections” in the background, but I love it!  Nathanael built a kind of brick retaining wall around the patio and also put in my rose bed. 

I got several of my roses from the Antique Rose Emporium in Brenham.  They have mostly roses that do well in our area, and don’t require extra help – which is a good thing since I definitely don’t have a very green thumb!  I bought my first rose when Nathanael and Emily were courting.  It was named “the Emily Rose”, and I just had to have it!  Another good rose I have is a “found rose” and is named the “Katy Road Rose” because it was found in Katy, Texas.  I wanted that one because Katy is where my hubby spends more than half his time at work!  Gen gave me some of her roses, which are also found roses, but I don’t remember the name of these. 

The Emily, Katy Road, and Gen’s roses are all pink roses.  This year I wanted a yellow rose so badly, so I bought 2 from the Antique Rose Emporium.  I lost one of them to puppy teeth (before we put an electric fence around my rose bed!) so I replaced it with a rose from Walmart.  Neither of these have bloomed at all.  Makes me sad!

I also have other plants around my veranda.  Gen has helped me pick out things that could best survive a plant murderer:  I have Bouncing Bette, which I call Bouncing Betty after a M*A*S*H quote.  It is a vintage perennial, and has lovely pale pink blossoms.  It tries to take over everything so I have to keep cutting it back.  In the bed with the Bouncing Bette is Angel Trumpet and  Amaryllis.  I put Memaw’s bird bath beside this flower bed, and have seen cardinals and blue jays bathing in it. 

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On the other side of the bird bath I have a ground cover I got from my Mama’s house that has beautiful green foliage and yellow daisy-like flowers.  This one just grows along the outside of the wall and flows over the wall into the patio area.  I also have some cannas that I moved from behind the house – they also want to take over!  But they sure bloom abundantly, and Dannye really likes the cannas. 

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Below the bird bath is a rather small triangle bed with a Knockout Rose in it.  I’m hoping it will really take off and bloom up a storm.  It has had a couple of blooms already, and they were so pretty. 

Bill brought home an old park bench that used to be decorative but the wood is rather rotten now.  I put some potted plants on the seat to prevent anyone from sitting on it.  I have 2 colors of mum I got last Fall, and they have bloomed all spring/summer!  Then I potted a few different plants in the middle pot, and put dianthus in the window planter on the edge of the bench.  I don’t intend to leave it there, but can’t decide where I want it.

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I also planted some flowers in my teacup planters, and found a wrought iron plant stand at Walmart for $4.99!  It has a mosaic tabletop, and is really nice.  And I love my teacups!  They are so cute, and the plants are doing really well.

 Teacup Planters

Last year Bill built a really nice arbor that I’ve been able to hang lights and grow very lush potato vines on. 

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Just outside of the rose bed is a gorgeous Rose of Sharon (Althea) that Bill’s Mom already had growing there.  It has really bloomed this year, and the humming birds and bumble bees love it!

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I really wish the photos showed how nice the whole thing is – but perhaps it is only nice through my eyes.  In this case, though, my opinion is the one that counts since my guys built it for me!  Right now, I’m also just about the only one who enjoys it because it is so hot outside! 

I do have more plans/dreams for my patio space.  This picture is NOT of our patio (ours is not up against our house, but in the center of one of our circle drives), but is one that shows an idea I’d like to try with lighting for the evenings on the veranda.

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In the Spring and Fall I really enjoy sitting at the patio any time of day or night.  We even have a fire pit of sorts that we use in the evenings when it’s cool.  During this time of year, though, it is terribly hot by the time I get home from work; but sometimes I go out there anyway.  It takes me awhile to get too hot, so I can enjoy it for a bit.  Before I began working my morning job, I loved going out there early with my Bible.  I really miss that quiet time of day, but there’s just not time before I go to work now.  I just get my garden fix in the evenings!

Emily and I have also been blessed with our vegetable garden.  We had to move it this year because of the cabin project, so we put it just across the driveway.  I don’t know if it is the weather this year, or the fact that we planted the garden on top of an old brush burn pile, but our garden is doing GREAT!  We don’t even try to have a large garden – just 8 tomato plants, 4 bell pepper plants, and some cucumbers.

Cherry Tomatoes

These are cherry tomatoes – I bought them just for Emily.  If she goes out to pick them, they never make it back up to the house!

Our Garden

These are our big tomatoes – aren’t’ they gorgeous!!!  We can hardly believe it – I’ve lived here 18 years and have never been able to grow tomatoes before!  In the words of Dannye’s little charge, Ruge – “Yes, they are so tasty!”


I am so grateful to the Lord for both of my gardens.  One nourishes my body, while the other nourishes my soul!  God truly cares about His children!

God bless your day!!



About Petty Bunch

The Petty Bunch is what we have called our family since Bill and I (Janina) began our family back in the early 1980s. We have gone down many roads together - homeschooling our kiddoes, enjoying the freedom of entrepreneurship many years, working at "real jobs" other years. Through it all, we have been loved with God's everlasting love, and have found that underneath are His everlasting arms! We are blessed to have been married for over 36 years, and have 3 incredible adult children, a wonderful daughter-in-law, an amazing son-in-law, and SEVEN grandchildren: four precious granddaughters, three handsome grandsons - so far. We are empty nesters, still enjoy the life of an entrepreneur and the freedom it gives us to continue enjoying our kids and now, their kids!
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10 Responses to The Petty Gardens

  1. Abbiegirl says:

    beautiful garden!I love the 2 picture of the orange flower and the 6th picture of the pink flower. their beautiful!miss you!Abigail

  2. Well, green thumb or no, I’d like to snatch you to my house for a week or two and see if you could possibly find some inspiration for my front yard. It has very little grass, and the dirt is the icky brown dry stuff that isn’t great for growing much of anything! Not to mention we live on a sort of an incline so I worry that the first rainstorm would probably wash away any grass seed we might try to plant. Our landlord is/was supposed to put down grass seed this summer, but none as of yet. We’ll see. :)I love, love, love gardens. When I was pregnant and so very sick, my husband would get amused at me because if I was getting really nauseated I’d close my eyes and say, “I’m in an orchard. I’m in an orchard.” Somehow visualizing a peaceful place with only fruity smells helped my poor stomach at that time. :)I really like that lighting idea, I’m sure it will be so lovely!Thanks for your comment on my page. I appreciate your honesty. Growing up, our house was never clean (or even remotely so). There are 8 kids in my family and they were all born within 12 years. Not only was the house chaotic but we were constantly falling behind in our school work because we were “home schooled” which meant in our case that we didn’t get much schooling most of the time. The chaos and lack of organization has kinda made me a bit of a perfectionist about my home. I couldn’t stand the mess at home, so I guess I’ve run in the opposite direction (in regards to keeping house) but I think that’s really a good thing (at least I hope so). I still struggle with staying on top of things because I wasn’t really taught to do so and I have to “discipline myself” like you were talking about.My husband, however, was brought up in a very neat, orderly home and so he doesn’t quite see why it’s such a learning process for me. Everyone teases me about being a neat/organizational freak, but that’s okay, if that’s what it takes to have a peaceful home. :)Well, look at that, I left you a long comment back. Oh, I should probably say that I don’t think there is anything wrong with big families or home schooling, especially when managed properly. I know some awesome people with very large families and they’re all homeschooled. In my case it was just that there was no organization, so you can imagine how it was. I myself have often contemplated having several children (hopefully mostly adopted — I really want to do that later in my life) and I’m seriously considering homeschooling Micah, at least for the first few grades.God bless your day!

  3. pettybunch says:

    @PrincessOfSeptember – I, too, was an unorganized homeschooling mom.  I leaned more toward the “unschooling” method of school rather than anything traditional.  Not necessarily on purpose, either!  But 2 things that were very positive in our home – we did indeed turn everything into a learning experience, and I had/have an unbelieveably close relationship with all my children even though they knew the many things I did wrong in my homemaking and homeschooling.  Plus, even with the lack of traditional schooling, all three of my children are well educated and have done very well as adults.  By the Grace of God!!!BTW, Bill is very neat and orderly, too.  I always say he was raised by June Cleaver and then married Roseanne Barr!

  4. ALDOG1 says:

    Poor Bill.  If the cabin doesn’t kill him, maybe it will make him stronger.  I know he will be so happy when it is behind him!  Life is too short to have so much on your shoulders all the time.  I know, you will say, but he enjoys it.  Enjoyment can only take you so far.  You two are not spring chickens any more. ha ha  Today Jessi and i realized that Mark is 48 years old.  And you know what that means!  Ye twin of a different mother. ha  I hope once they are able to move into the cabin, Bill relaxes and turns the rest over to Nate and Em.  Remember, you promised to come see us again.  The river is still a’flowing and the sun is still a’shining.  Jess and Jacey fly home tomorrow.  We have had a fun week but those two teenagers make me tired. ha  I have had company for almost two weeks straight and am ready to be all alone for about a week.  Just me and my Lola veging in the trailer.Your flowers are so gorgeous.  I would love to see them all in person some time.  I have never even seen your terrace.Love you whole bunches.

  5. momstranz says:

    Nina, I love the pictures of your flowers and the potted plants all lined up.  It sounds beautiful, and I remember it as beautiful in the times I have spent at your house sitting on that patio.  Isn’t it fun taking joy in these simple little things.  thanks for sharing your Texas gardens with us.  I feel a bit more connected.  And THANK YOU AND ALL YOUR FAMILY for the BIG CABIN BLITZ!!  What an amazing, awe-inspiring, exhausting, beautiful job you did!!  She was SO excited about it.  It was such a gift of love and I can’t really find the words to thank you…  but THANK YOU!  Love, pam 

  6. pettybunch says:

    @ALDOG1 – Not only does Bill enjoy it (certainly he wishes the pressure was off, but he really enjoys the creativity and the work) but he & Nathanael will be getting back to working on our house when the cabin is finished.  We really all work together really well, when we can actually get the time off together!  So we will just move from one project to the next…  Bill’s not a spring chickens, but if he stops working, he will really get old!

  7. pettybunch says:

    @momstranz – I’m so thankful we could surprise her, but more thankful that it looks like they will be in at least part of the cabin before Summer’s end.  It is well past time!!!!!

  8. ALDOG1 says:

    You know I just love Bill and worry about him.  He’s not really an old rooster.  ha  That rooster still has lots of spring.  I just know how it was pressing on his mind and I know it will make him happy when they are living in it.Love you,B

  9. i love, love, love our garden, and your patio is SO pretty. It is wonderful to have little places of rest and beauty in our busy lives!and the cabin is A-MAZING! we are so beyond thrilled to be this close to living there. It will be awesome when it’s done—and BOTH of our husbands can let themselves off the hook and do something ELSE. 🙂

  10. pettybunch says:

    @sunshinejoy717 – I’m ready to help paint – that will make it seem really yours, when you personalize it with your colors and decor.  I can’t wait!!

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