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  1. Mila
    February 17, 2014 @ 6:42 pm

    My hubby should definitely read your blog!He’s not interested in my latest, amazing,unique project, if he sees that there is more of “us” out there, it might convince him that the war is lost! You simly have to be interested in your wifes “latest, amazing,unique project”.It’s time to surrender and participate ! 😀


  2. Tim
    March 28, 2014 @ 4:06 pm

    Hi Victoria,

    I was searching for pictures of Zinnia gardens and your pictures are amazing! I read that you purchased your seeds from Johnnys Seeds, which is a great site. My question is, in your pictures it looks as if you have purples, pinks and whites, is this correct? I have grown zinnia mixes before but I have never came to love the orange colors. Also, you mentioned you started them from seed. It looks as if you have each plant spaced about 6″ apart. Is that correct? And they filled in like that at the end of the season?


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      March 29, 2014 @ 11:55 am

      Yes to all these questions except spacing 6″… (what you are seeing in the front is Lisianthus which I had to move because Zinnia got so big.) I would say I spaced closer to a foot??

      I grew the orange last year. I loved the blooms that came out lighter, but darker ones we’re not my favorite.


  3. Tim
    March 29, 2014 @ 12:12 pm

    Thanks for that info. Wow, so you spaced them by a foot and they filled in like that? I went on Johnny Seeds and ordered a variety of all the pink/purple, a white and a yellow. In the front I’m going to try the smaller Zahara Starlight Rose and the Zahara Yellow to pick up the colors from the bigger Benarys. The back Ill do some daisys like you did also…I think it will all look great together – who knows though! For your colors, its hard to tell from the pic, but they are all very vibrant, do you happen to know which colors you ordered and used from Johnny Seeds in the pics?


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      March 29, 2014 @ 12:43 pm

      Purple, pink, some two-tone rose that I forget the name of…
      I’ve also used the Johnny’s variety (giant dahlia or something) and it’s just as good as the brand “benary” and cheaper.


  4. Lynne
    April 8, 2014 @ 12:11 pm

    Thanks for the laugh, I needed it! I read yesterday’s post, which led me to the giant rock post–I bet that was great fun watching them move the rock. lol We’ve determined that too many people are interested in things if they’re free. We like to charge a small fee, like $5, to weed out all of those people who call and say they’re coming and then never do.
    Your garden is lovely–and I’m struck again at the resemblance of my John to your Paul. 😀 When I want a new flower bed, convincing John that it’s a good idea will then “make it so”. Plus, my thumb is brown–I can pick out plants, point where to inter them in the ground, but then I should never touch them!!


  5. margaret
    June 2, 2014 @ 9:52 am

    Found your site while looking for ideas to plant around our big rock (about 4x larger than your lovely). Love your little garden and have decided to go with some Zinnia. Oh, and we choose to have a BA rock placed in our yard because we have had several auto accidents at the intersection that resulted in at least two cars almost in our house.


  6. Rebecca Ando
    June 5, 2014 @ 2:41 pm

    I tried this one year and it was wonderful… Graduated Zinnia sizes, Giant, Med. and dwarf zinnia. Adorable!
    What’s not to love about zinnias and dahlias???
    Thanks for being such a delirious, decorating diva!
    Your blog warms my heart! 🙂


  7. Grace Greenfield
    October 16, 2014 @ 10:59 am

    Well, I have a long history of design hits & misses. In my humble opinion, the massive rock was a keeper. A quick visit to the southwest, (don’t miss the Aspen trees in the fall) would clarify the interplay of large, sculptural rocks, the hardscape, as it relates to the landscape. But, it’s okay & the garden is lovely.


  8. Tammie Warren
    April 23, 2015 @ 3:58 pm

    Seeing the rock with the flat top and with it being near the street in front of an old home, I believe it might have been a step for people exiting a carriage. I have seen these stone in front of many Victorian houses.


  9. julie
    November 8, 2015 @ 6:16 pm

    Lucky you–you found what may be the three easiest flowers to grow. I found them by accident. I bought all kinds of seed every year and without fail, they failed to sprout. I wanted a garden for the peace and beauty of it, not to grow 45.00 tomatoes. Finally, I threw about 20 packages of 10 cent shasta daisy seeds, and they grew like gangbusters. So I experimented with inexpensive seeds: if they grew, good. If they never showed up, too bad. I live in the high desert of Arizona, so I don’t have much of a mildew problem. The easiest flowers have been Shasta daisy, black-eyed Susan, coreopsis, zinnias, of course (which fought it out with the Susans to see who would take over the yard), and a friendly little flower called chocolate flower that smells like hot cocoa and looks like a pale yellow daisy. Include cosmos, hollyhock, calendula and marigold (if you can stand its smell) and throw in a few johnny-jump-ups. Notice almost all have the daisy configuration? Something else grows famously out here–roses!


  10. jaybee
    September 23, 2016 @ 9:18 am

    I’m really late to this party, but love, love love your work and your writing.

    I don’t have a Paul, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your POV), and really wish I did, but only for the digging, and heavy jobs, because they always take me forever, and never end up as professional looking as I really want them to!

    I have just taken up the black edging material (also taken out of someones trash!), as it seemed to be lifting out of the soil – this after about three years of being there. I’ve replaced mine with rocks, (none so big as your BA rock however). I love that you (well Paul) were able to get the edging material so far into the ground that you could sit relatively flat rocks on top of it… looks completely amazing.

    Are there more recent photos that I haven’t found yet? Did you extend this bed? If so, can you direct to me where the newer pics are please?

    Best to you and keep up your great work.


  11. Linda Pushko
    August 16, 2017 @ 9:11 am

    I loved your post! As an obsessed gardener I can totally relate. I got rid of my front lawn and turned it into a huge flower bed. My husband did the “mule work” as he calls it, rototilled


  12. Mo Leviner
    August 27, 2017 @ 8:35 am

    As I read this early Sunday morning, while Hubby is sleeping, I am giggling away . You really should write a weekly column. I have a hosta bed across my front yard, also completein with big rocks. You have inspired me to try the zinnias–mine mildewed. They will certainly brighten my hostas. Look for my craigslist posting for free, you-dig plants hostas soon..


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