I posted these two photos of the deck last week immediately after A had completed the re-finishing of it. As you can see, there had been a rain shower which gives the deck the appearance of being a deeper, darker shade than it actually is. I really like it after it’s rained, I love the way the water beads up on the deck boards, which indicates nothing more than the deck oil doing its job! But I love it!!

This is how it was looking on Monday after a little bit of hard graft. The table and chairs are also wood, and they too were sanded down and refinished, and they sit now ready to be used. Behind them is the deck box I planted up from the earlier post.

The fountain is something we came up with ourselves having not been able to find something that we liked in any store or magazine. The base is a large fibre glass pot on sale at Bed, Bath and Beyond for $20. The fountain part was also on sale at Meijers for another $20. A put the whole lot together with existing tools and bits and bobs (that’s a highly technical term right there!) inside to hold the mock bamboo pillars in place on the top. The stones are from our garden and picked up here and there on our travels, and the large shells were picked up from a beach in Florida when we were on holiday two years ago. I like to add the pots at the base for a little more colour and shape, I’ve got one more to do to balance it all up.

In this view you can see the second deck box planted up and hanging on the rail, and in front of that is an odd looking thing that’s actually the base for an umbrella, and the white thing on top is an empty tablet container to stop the little garden critters filling it up with all sorts of interesting things! At some point there will be two benches here, one either side of the flower box, and an umbrella that can be opened to provide some shade on a hot day. The benches need a check over and maybe a rub down so they’re not out yet.

I potted up two hanging baskets, which are now…. hanging!, with purple Wave Petunias, pink petunias and a trailing fern.

There’s another hanging pot to go up, and that’s my Down Under pot, I don’t even know if these are Australian or if the name was just coined because the flowers grow upside down. Here it is as it is now, planted up with a geranium. In another week, after the geranium roots have grown out a bit you turn it over and hang it up, effectively upside down! I would imagine the plant is a bit confused at first, but as all plants grow towards the light, it soon starts to grow up the outside of the pot! I know, I know, little things please little minds!

Also moved outside is my giant fern, visible on the deck shot above, and the hibiscus. Both of these aren’t hardy and have to spend the winter in doors in the dry air which they both hate. It was a relief to get them back outside where they’re much happier. I repotted the hibiscus into a large fibre glass pot, love the colour of it, and I popped a few annuals round the base too.

And finally, we tested out the sprinklers on Monday night too. At the end of the driveway we’ve got one that’s in trouble so A will have to have a look at it. I said to him when we were testing them that in the 9 years or so that we’ve had them I’ve never tired of watching them pop up and work. I don’t think I ever will, I love to sit on the deck steps when they’re on, there’s something incredibly relaxing about watching and listening to them.

This is a very early shot, maybe the first or second year we lived here, but it gives you a better idea of what it looks like when a few of them are going at once.