From Montreal. This year I’m thankful for a brief visit to Canada. Could it become more than a visit? Only time will tell. At least we have our passports now.  And I’m grateful not to have to cook turkey this year – or any giant side dishes designed to overstuff. This isn’t the first year we’ve taken a “bye” for Thanksgiving and I strongly recommend it every five years or so.


            Stonehenge in New England

We woke up to a first snow dusting in  the garden yesterday. The wind had tossed the burlap coat off the tallest of the little boxwoods. I couldn’t tell if they’d grown this year until now-the signs indicate larger coverings are in order for 2018. It’s tedious to cover them but it’s great for new compact evergreens or ornamentals – giving them a little extra protection from heavy snow on their tender branches.

Winter is a good time to reflect on the “bones” of your garden. What’s left there when all the foliage dies back? Evergreens of all colors and shapes offer new interest for late autumn through the winter.


  Montreal- The Old City- Here we come!

What color is your hardscape? Look around, what do you already have, what kind of things do you like and what’s the character of your out -of- doors. Be open to what’s already around and follow its lead. At first I was determined that our brick would be red like my family home in DC or like Savannah, a more recent haunt.

Instead, our “ranchy” house and its New England fieldstone fit perfectly with gray brick. We’d used a lot of native stone for the retaining wall above the garden and scattered throughout the azalea hill. The addition of black iron fencing and plant hangers, a granite landing and metal chairs complement the softer brick color.

Our new white concrete pedestals look bare now without their large flower pots. Maybe a large colored glass or stone ball to top them next winter- if I can figure out how to stabilize things.


The English Urn in Winter

Some years I fill the flower urns with greens and  sprays of red berries. I love the top of our English urn and look forward to its placement every fall- my husband found it online. A word of caution. Consider the height you want for your urn and buy the pedestal base along with the urn. We’d like ours to be as tall as possible to have a commanding presence in the garden but it didn’t come with one and we’re particular the height still has to allow for watering. We originally bought the white pedestals as a base for the urn…but the colors and shape just didn’t work. Now we’re using pavers until we find a proper English column.

Winter garden sculptures. This was a cool site for all kinds of garden things. Outdoor sculptural décor is heavy so you want to shop local. Estate sales, online and off, are some favorite ways to shop for them.

And look! Maybe a summer trip to Montreal will be in the cards for 2018! Living sculptures. Unbelievable.



Whitehorse, a folk rock band was formed by a Canadian singer/songwriting duo was founded in 2010 by husband and wife team Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland. We’ll be seeing them in Montreal. I had to buy tickets ahead and the site was only displaying in French. My first experience with google translate went very smoothly!  Geesh. Whitehorse is based in Ontario and are touring all over. Live a few months ago. Nighthawks.

And what is it about Thanksgiving that brings on the red??? My favorite Paola Pillow. Looking for a new home! You can see them all here.

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