Deuce Cities Henhouse

The Side Garden

Raised Bed Side Garden
Hey buddies! I’ve been working my butt off the last few days, trying hard to finish my latest gardening adventure. I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was on a mission to make the veggie gardens pretty, I didn’t want them to look like they were just plopped down on the side of my house. My plan was to frame out the gardens with a tailored bed of mulch that followed the lines of our house. Easier said then done. In order to do this I needed to remove some of the grass, amend the soil, install a border, add mulch, recess stepping stones, and top it off with some new plants.

I’ll be sharing some tips and my process for installing garden beds in tomorrows post.

Progress is slow on the side garden
This side garden has been the low-man on the gardening totem pole. Over the last few years, I’ve been focused on the backyard and boulevard garden beds. Those gardens are all looking pretty good these days, and I finally had the time to give a little love to the side garden.

In Minneapolis it is typical to have houses butt up to one edge of a city log, allowing just enough room for a small walkway on that side of the house. Because of this, there is often more space on the other side of the house for a small, but useable side yard. This is exactly the case in our situation.

In 2012 the kids and I built our first small veggie garden on the side of the house. When I planned the original garden I imaged that someday we’d add another veggie garden or flower bed constructing something that would give the side yard purpose and relation to the rest of the yard. This year I followed through adding the second veggie garden and now finishing it off by framing it out with a new border and a smidgen of extra planting space.

Raised Bed Side Garden
I added a small flower bed at the front of the garden. It was here that I needed to remove the existing grass and amend the soil with compost so that the new perennials would have the best shot at a good and happy plant life. I was also able to add to new perennials to the garden. I love peonies and decided the new flower bed would make the perfect home for them.

My husband Jeff and I celebrated our 11 year (insane!) anniversary two weeks ago. He knows what I like, and got me a gift card to the garden center as an anniversary present. I decided that I would use my gift in a way that celebrated our anniversary, and used it to purchase two beautiful peonies. I got some fancy-pants ones too, and they are super amazing. They will bloom during our anniversary every year, so isn’t that all mushy and sweet? Since it was the end of the blooming cycle they are already donzito, but I was able to snap a photo before I planted them earlier this week. You can see how pretty they will be next year.

Raised Bed Side Garden

Raised Bed Side Garden
I’m a little obsessed with the new pathway. We had a few stepping stones before, but they didn’t look half as good as they do now. I added 7 more stones to the pathway and now it starts at the edge of our front yard and meanders all the way to the backyard. The dogwood on the edge of the house arches over the entrance of the side yard, and it all looks a little magical. I keep walking by the front of the house to catch a peek from the street.

Raised Bed Side Garden
Besides the peonies I planted herbs. In the front part of the garden I planted two varieties of basil, one standard as well as this purple stemmed beauty. For ground cover between the two gardens I planted thyme and creeping rosemary to fill in between the two blue stone pavers which are nestled between the two raised beds. Thyme and rosemary are both perennial herbs, but unfortunately for me – rosemary is typically only hardy through zone 6.

Raised Bed Side Garden

Raised Bed Side Garden
The garden looking out towards the front yard.

PSST – THE DRILL GIVEAWAY ENDS TODAY, ENTER HERE

Raised Bed Side Garden

Raised Bed Side Garden

Plants Used in the Side Garden
1
Peony – Coral Charm
1
Peony – Raspberry Charm
1
Coral Bells – Caramel
1
Basil – African Blue
1
Creeping Rosemary
1
Thyme – Silver
1
Perilla
1
Creeping Speedwell

Raised Bed Side Garden

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in gardening

CSA Recipe : Radish & Turnip Salad

Radish & Turnip Salad with Oregano Vinaigrette
I’m so excited that it’s CSA season again! We just received our first box from the South West Wisconsin farm, Driftless Organics, last week. Our fridge is overflowing with greens – I could just sit and stare at it all day. I wouldn’t though, that would be crazy, but it is really refreshing to see so many raw veggies in our fridge again.

Subscribing to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) has a lot of great benefits. It allows you to support local agriculture and farmers on a first hand basis, you get and opportunity to eat lots of healthy stuff, and it gives exposure to new varieties of veggies that you may have never cooked with or even tried before. The hard part of course is being dedicated to preparing and eating your CSA box, it does take a bit of dedication.

Every season starts with greens so be prepared for a few salad recipes in the coming weeks, this one is a doozy. I could eat radishes all day long in the summer time, so I especially love this recipe. Salad turnips are almost as good as radishes with the a similar but smoother texture and milder flavor. The root vegetables are delicious with the oregano vinaigrette dressing.

   
 

Radish & Turnip Salad with Oregano Vinaigrette
Recipe from Driftless Organics

For Salad:

▼ 1 head chopped butterhead lettuce
▼ 4 salad turnips, sliced
▼ 2 medium rashes, sliced
▼ 2 purple scallions, chopped
▼ 4 hard boiled eggs, sliced (optional)

For Vinaigrette:

▼ 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
▼ 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
▼ 3 tsps fresh oregano finely chopped
▼ salt & pepper to taste
▼ 1 green garlic bulb & stalk, minced fine
▼ 4 tbsp olive oil

Mix all ingredients (save the hardboiled eggs) in a large salad bowl. Whisk vinaigrette ingredients together and serve over salad. Lay the eggs over the top of the mixed, dressed salad.
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in Eats

The Fence Is Looking So Good

Horizontal Cedar Fence
Do you like how I got that cardinal to pose for my fence pic?

It is raining cats and dogs over here, today is especially nuts, I think we’re closing in on 4″ of water falling from the sky over the last twelve hours! Flash flooding and total insanity abound. I am losing my mind not being able to go outside, my heart is crying. I just stare out my windows waiting for it to stop.

So out of pure boredom I thought I would do this self indulgent fence post. Stop me when you guys start hating me for seeing my garden in every GD post. I was going to save these fence pics for my June-garden-recap but decided the fence might as well have a post dedicated to it’s beautiful self. It is so pretty after all.

Basically, it finally looks like it belongs in the yard now that the perennials are all full size and blooming. I wanted you to see it when things were growing next to it.

Horizontal Cedar Fence

Horizontal Cedar Fence

Horizontal Cedar Fence
I could totally make out with that fence.

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in Outdoor

New White Outdoor Chairs

Target Bryant Chairs Painted White
A few weeks ago I picked up a couple of Bryant chairs from the Threshold collection at Target. Do they seem familiar to you at all? I kind of think they are a total knock off of the Loll Designs Lollygagger line, which is a little dissful of Target, especially since Loll is also a Minnesota local brand.

I totally adore Loll furniture though and would love to have a set of my own someday, but for $440 a chair, that someday is a long ways away. When I saw the Bryant chair at Target I knew it would be the perfect chair to get me through now and someday – I couldn’t resist the $118 price tag (on sale) and I was able to look way past the brown facade.

Target Bryant Chairs
You might have noticed the new chairs in the photos that I took for the drill giveaway last week. By the way, the BLACK+DECKER drill giveaway is still open, so you should check the website and leave a comment on my post if you haven’t already.

Target Bryant Chairs Painted White

Target Bryant Chairs Painted White
Anyways, I was totally not feeling the off-the-shelf brown that the Bryant chairs are stocked in, but I was definitely loving the style of them. I knew a painting project was in my future if I really wanted to achieve that true modern look. After debating between black and white, I took a deep breath an decided I would spray paint them white.

I was a little nervous because I have not had the best luck with spray paint, its gets messy, and I get overly eager and often end up with drip marks. I was determined to spray paint the proper way and make these chairs really nice, giving thin even coats and allowing sufficient drying in between. I was a little hesitant to dive right in with any old spray paint as the adirondack chairs are made of all-weather polystyrene as opposed to wood. Lucky for me, my go to spray paint brand, Rust-oleum, has the Universal product which is designed for use on wood, plastic, metal, wood, concrete and even vinyl. I figured that polystyrene just had to be covered. I turned my garage into a spray booth, disassembling and spraying the chairs, and within a matter of days I had two perfectly sprayed white chairs. I love them.

I’m not gonna lie, it took a lot of paint to get the perfect finish on these chairs, seven cans total (for both) to be exact. At eight bucks a can, that’s not cheap, but it was totally worth it to me to have evenly painted white chairs for our backyard.

Target Bryant Chairs Painted White
The Threshold Bryant collection at Target is pretty solid. There are lots of cool pieces that are nicely priced, including a picnic table that is reminiscent of the table that Scout Regalia produces, although not as nice. I’ll be waiting for an end-of-season sale and most likely be making purchases on foot rests and maybe even a side table too.

Target Bryant Chairs Painted White

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in Furniture, Outdoor

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial
Guys! It’s like DIY project week around here. Two tutorials in one week, that’s like super crazy. If you’ve had any trouble viewing the blog this week, I apologize. My host’s server was down and it was causing my site to load very slowly – because of this I’ve been not been able to reply to comments. It should be better now, so please check out the Trellis tutorial and giveaway from earlier this week if you haven’t already.

I’m really excited to share with you an updated version of the Macrame Chair Tutorial that I originally posted two summers ago. I was def lacking on details last time I shared this project, I guess I didn’t realize so many of you would be in to learning the ways of my macramé secrets. I thought I’d fill you in, giving you all the details!

While I was planning the tutorial it just so happened that Mollie Makes Magazine asked me to feature the same project. The chair was published in issue #40 last month! It was such a thrill to be in a real deal magazine – cool times.

You can find the pattern I used for the project right here.

Supply List
(Supplies for Woven Macrame Lawn Chair)

Aluminum chair frame
200 yards of 6mm Macrame Cord (I used 100 yards grey, 50 yards green, 25 yards pink, 25 yards yellow)
2 Crochet Hooks Size Q

 

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

Tip:
Keep your skein of cord under the chair. It will make weaving much easier.

 

1
Tie Cord in a Square Knot
Face the chair from the front left side. Tie a square knot around the left side of the front bar.
2
Create a Loop
Pull the cord behind the back brace of the chair and up to the top bar. Create a loop and pull it over the front of the top bar and behind to the left.
3
Pull the Loose End of the Cord Tight
Insert crochet hook into the loop and pull the loose end of the cord tight. Have the hook rest on the chair frame.
4
Create a Loop
Bring the cord down going behind the back brace. Create a loop, then pull it over the top of the front bar and behind to the left.
5
Pull Loose Cord Taut
Insert the crochet hook into the loop. Pull loose cord taut to create tension. Have the hook rest on the chair frame.
6
Behind the Back Brace of the Chair
Pull the cord behind the back brace of the chair and up to the top bar. Create a loop.
Get ready for summer weather with these playful and bright woven lawn chairs! It’s easy, fun and inexpensive to makeover old aluminum chair frames with a few skeins of colorful macramé cord. Follow a pattern, or make your own design — woven macrame furniture can get as loud and crazy as you like! Without a doubt, you’ll be the envy of the summer barbecue.

 

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

Tip:
Take extra care to make sure the cord doesn’t get twisted. You’ll be happy you did.

 

7
Pull Loop Behind to the Left
Pull the loop over the front of the top bar and behind to the left of the last vertical cord you created.
8
Hook the Newly Made Loop
Hook the newly made loop. The loop on the crochet hook will overlap the two vertical cords to its right.
9
Create a Chain Stitch
Pull the loop taut and pull it through the previous loop from ‘step 2,’ creating a chain stitch. Let the hook rest in the loop.
10
Bring Loose Cord Behind the Back Brace
Pull the loose cord down behind the back brace. Create a loop and pull it over the top of the front bar.
11
Pull The Loop Around the Top Bar
Pull the loop around the top bar and to the left of the last-created vertical cord.
12
Hook The New Loop
Using the crochet hook, hook the new loop.

 
 

Jamz: “Cloud Crawl” from Lazerbeak – used with permission.
 

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

13
Create a Chain Stitch
Pull the new loop through the loop created in ‘step 5’ making a chain stitch. Pull the loose cord taut. Let the hook rest in the loop.

Repeating Steps 6 – 13 until you have created 59 vertical cords. At that point, you will be on the top right corner of the chair.

To finish vertical cording: Cut the cord from the skein, leaving about four feet. Pull the cord through the last loop, removing the crochet hook. Bring the cord down behind the back brace, and over the front bar. Bring the cord through the loop on the crochet hook, pull through. Finish with a square knot. You now have 60 vertical cords.

You are now ready to begin horizontal cording the seat and back of the chair! Both will be done in exactly the same way.

14
Create a Square Knot, Make a Loop
Create a square knot in the lower left hand area of where you’ll be working (seat or back). Create a loop with your cord and weave it through the vertical cording according to the pattern you are following.
15
Pull the Loop Over the Right Bar
Similar to what you did with the vertical cording, pull the loop over the right bar and bring it down and under the newly made horizontal cords. Insert the crochet hook and pull the loose end (now on the left side) taut. Let the hook rest in the loop.
16
Create a Loop
Create a loop with the loose cord on the left side of the chair frame. Bring the loop over the top of the left bar and down under the newly created horizontal cord. Insert your crochet hook into the loop and pull the cord taut. Let the hook rest in the loop.
17
Create a Loop and Weave
Create a loop and weave it through the vertical cording according to the pattern.

Repeat Steps 15-17 pulling the newly created loop through the previously made loop on the crochet hook each pass, until you have come to the the 55th horizontal row of the pattern. Finish the horizontal cording the same way you finished the vertical cording. You’ll now have 56 horizontal cords.

 
 

Jamz: “Cloud Crawl” from Lazerbeak – used with permission.

Tip:
To finish: Trim cord ends to an inch, use a flame to seal and melt the end of your cord and press it into a discrete location on the underside of your chair.

 

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

Woven Macramé Chair Tutorial

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in DIY, Tutorial