Garden of Giants

Why is it that when we're outside, we create spaces that remind us of being inside, and when we're inside we (well, definitely me) create spaces that remind us of the outside?  Outside we make "outdoor living" spaces, treehouses, fun sheds, outdoor kitchens, patios with rugs, etc...  and inside we want our windows wide open to reveal views of the outdoors, and we use natural materials & objects to bring nature in.  I'm really not sure why but I guess I'd say it's because we want the best out of both??  As humans, the outdoors is beautiful & awe-inspiring but maybe it's just in our DNA to make shelters and/or nest?  I'm guessing not everyone has this bug, but for those of you who have it, you know it's like that pregnant "nesting" stage for life. 

{image from Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Blog}

I loved my treehouse as a kid... I seriously used to sweep it!! (and you know I hate cleaning)  Yet just as much, I loved sleeping with my windows open so that it felt almost like I was outside.  I loved camping outside but I loved going into the cozy tent to sleep. 

{our Girl Scout tents were soooo not this great... image from }

Anyway, when it gets warmer out, my mind always goes to gardening & enjoying the yard.  Last year we planted wisteria along our fence and are a backwards with it, but are adding a pergola to our gate for it to grow over this year.  There's something about outdoor spaces that are just a tiny bit enclosed & private that I love. 

This year, we're planning something really special for the kids (&us)  thanks to this book my mother-in-law gave me:

{by Sharon Lovejoy found here}

It's called Roots Shoots Buckets & Boots and I am craaaaazy about it.  Seriously, it makes you want to go out and start digging.  I planted my daffodil bulbs this weekend after taking a peruse.  (I know I'm a couple of months late on that but I heard from  good source that they might have a shot?? )  In her book, Sharon Lovejoy outlines 12 different types of gardens you can make with y our kids.  (And honestly, whether you haev kids or not, these gardens are a-mazing.)   I want to do a couple this year but the one we're definitely doing is the "Garden of Giants."   It's actually a "living fort" that the kids (and me!) can play in.  They crawl through a tunnel of beans to get to a teepee of gourds surrounded by a giant pumpkin patch. 

{image from how gorgeous are these hanging gourds?!!}

You have to wait to start planting until it stays above 70 on most days so we'll need to wait a while for that (umm... yeah snow storm coming tonight what???!!) but I CANNOT WAIT!!!  For anyone interested in joining us, you can buy pre-done seed packets for the Garden of Giants here or you can get them on your own. 

I'm curious to see how this turns out.  I love to garden {mostly on weekends} but am an impatient & neglectful gardener...  things that don't need a lot of tending (or um watering) do really well at our house.  So we'll see how this goes.  If it works, I'll take lots of pictures.

xoxo, Lauren

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.


Linda@ Lime in the Coconut said...

Awwww. That book (or it's predescesor) was in our bookshelf when the kidlets were...well, kidlets!

We loved growing sunflowers and bean teepees. Have a ball with it!

Alyssa said...

Hi Lauren,
I'm a big fan of Sharon, myself. I have her book Sunflower Houses. She is so sweet and visits my blog and I hers. You should become a member of her Grimy Hands Girls Club :). I can't wait to see your creation with your kids! Last year we created a children's garden. It was awesome and I give Sharon Lovejoy the credit! Love your blog and talents! ;)Alyssa of Boston Bee

Loretta Fontaine (APPLESandRUBIES) said...

Lauren- The "Garden of Giants" sounds like so much fun! Never saw gourds hanging before.

So lucky you are building some outdoor structures! I'm dreaming of outdoor spaces and am wondering how much maintainence goes into a pea gravel patio. It would be the cheapest way to make an outdoor space I can think of!

I just did a post on your and Brooke's showrooms. (Had SO much fun finding examples of Peter Dunham's "Fig Leaf" fabric!)


Jacci said...

I know what you mean about making the outdoors seem more like the indoors & vice versa. Funny, isn't it? I think it comes from a desire to meld the two into a seamless space. If the outside is a little more insidier (what?) and the inside is a little more outsidier, then the two become enough like one another that they flow. As I was writing that, I remembered that someone wrote about the idea of a "vanishing threshold" - basically a blurring of the lines that separate our indoor spaces from our outdoor. That's such a clever, and accurate, was to describe it.

Coastal Detour said...

I love that book too! I did a lot of projects with my kids when they we wee ones. So fun. That was back when we had acerage. Now we live at the beach!

Rebecca@Harmony and Home said...

Good luck Lauren. I hope it turns out well!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the recommendation! I was stunned last fall when visiting a friend with a garden that my girls ate tomatoes, carrots, and peas because they were able to pick the produce themselves. Wouldn't catch them doing that at the kitchen table. But you won't be able to beat a tunnel and teepee!

Gretchen O. said...

This weather totally makes me want to get my fingers dirty! Our daffodils are already coming up! I agree with the neglectfull gardener, weeding is NOT my favorite part.

Amy said...

Sounds like a fun project, I know the little guys will love it! Add some Joe Pye Weed in for the butterflies (it's another larger than life plant). As a sidenote-with the Wisteria it will rip apart anything wood, fences, pergolas, trellises, if you're going to grow it put it on wrought iron or cable it so it doesn't destroy all your & Dave's hard work! *Amy

Aubrey {All Things Bright and Beautiful} said...

I love that you will only take pictures if it works out!!! (c: If it was me, there would be *NO POSSIBLE WAY* it would work out, I kill all green things. )c: I'm so ready for the spring weather...

Acquired Objects said...

Sounds like a ton of fun for everyone in the family. OK once you start putting everything in I'm going to nag you to WATER! Sorry but it's for the sake of the boys and you don't have the best track record for watering.Besides those of us who follow along can't wait to see that fort you create!

Lauren said...

Hahaha would love watering reminders!! Amy, can I add anything to my fence to strengthen it?

leah said...

i love the comment " it's like that pregnant "nesting" stage for life". That is exactly how it is for me!

thanks for your insight!

Jessica Wrasman said...

I can totally relate to being an impatient gardener. It takes such patience. I had a great herb garden going, then went away for 3 days and came back to brown sticks...ugh! :) Thanks for sharing this book!

southbel said...

I love this idea. I might have to run out and get that book myself. My daughter has such interest in the outdoors and even gardening that I think this would help cultivate that interest. Love your blog!