My Summer Garden Tour

It's our second summer in this house, and I've really especially loved my garden this year.
In June, I traded in my car for a bigger SUV for the purpose of holding a ton more flats of flowers fitting in more of my kids' sports, etc. stuff. I've been able to cram all sorts of new garden finds in there!
Anyway, as a little break from the recipes I've been posting lately, I wanted to share a few recent photos of my garden:

I did two matching planters near the table on our deck and filled them with tuberous begonias (yellow), lobelia and a spike for height. The lobelia have such a pretty blue flower, but weren't as hardy as I'd hoped. Next year I may do a creeping vine for a filler and forego the pop of blue.

I followed the thriller-spiller-filler rule:
 find a "thriller" for height and pair it with a "spiller" that will go over the edges of your pot and a "filler" to take up most of the area inside the pot.

I have six fantastic railing containers courtesy of the former owners of our home.
I discovered this year that it's easy to pop out something that isn't working and throw in something new mid-season. For some reason I've never tried that before, and it worked like a charm! 
In my containers I used lobelia which I later replaced with variegated sweet potato vine, white begonias, purple torenia and alyssum as a filler.
Here are my garden faves this year: 
I found these asiatic lillies at Meijer on Clearance on a late summer grocery trip last year and purchased them for $2/plant. I figured they were a gamble, but a good one at that price point!
Low and behold they were the most beautiful plant in my garden this year!
We have a raised bed in the back that became the destination for all of the extra plants I had in my garden flats along with anything I removed from another location. 
The swan in the middle lived at my in-laws house for decades and recently became mine.
I sprayed it pewter and filled it with ivy and torenia.
Here's another favorite of mine:
These beautiful hydrangeas came to me as starts from my mom's garden in Chicago last summer. 
I stuck them in a back bed, watered them like crazy and crossed my fingers!
This spring they began blooming and haven't stopped!
 I love the pop of white they give this back bed!
For my birdbath, I planted coleus in a variety of sizes and colors.
Unfortunately they all stayed about this size because the soil has been so wet this summer...
I love looking out my kitchen window and seeing the vibrant colors of the coleus. 
It adds the perfect amount of color to our backyard.
I found this odd-looking plant at Lowe's about a month ago...
It's a climbing hydrangea that, in roughly two years, will fingers and toes crossed climb the fence and produce big, white blooms. 
Here's the view from the backyard of our deck:
And here is the stacked planter I filled with lobelia, torenia and alyssum:
Here's one more view of the back deck- pardon the rain!
Here's a shot of our veggie and herb garden that I took when my big kid's sweet godmother, Jenny, came to visit for the girls' birthday party:
If you follow my Instagram account @thislifewellloved, you've seen all of the yummy peppers, beans, tomatoes, cukes and herbs I've been growing in this little spot.

I'm going to head back to my kitchen now- currently working on Smitten Kitchen's homemade pop tarts...YUM!

Have a relaxing end to your weekend and a great week!  

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