To Make a Flower Arbor

by Delores Zimmerman | Jan 1, 2024 | 0 comments

Flower Bed Contest Third Place

I decided to create my flower bed around an arbor. To make it, we bent a hog panel into an upside-down U shape, anchoring it down with U-shaped rebar at each corner. It just wanted to fall over, so we pounded in T-posts at the center on each side and wired the panel to them.

In the fall of 2022, I planted tulip bulbs along the front with Freckle Face lilies on each side and daffodil bulbs along the outside of the panel. In the back, I positioned a brown cast iron wheel on each side and tied it securely to the panel.

In the spring, I put our birdbath between the wheels. Then I had the fun of choosing and planting the other flowers. Between the tulip bulbs, I arranged six pink and white Supertunias® and two Bubblegum® petunias. Looking back, I should have put both Bubblegum® petunias in the front because they spread more. One in front and one in back gives it a more lopsided look.

Then I put a honeysuckle plant on each side to climb the arbor, a calla lily on each side of the birdbath, and purple fountain grass at the two back corners. It must have been just the right kind of soil for the fountain grass because the tag said it grows 24”-36” (.6-.9 m) high, but this grass grew 5 feet (1.5 m) high. Succulents occupy the baskets hanging on the side.

Later, I hung a bucket up for a drip to attract birds. To make the drip, I punched a hole in the bottom of an old pail and inserted a screw and a rubber washer so it drips instead of coming out in a stream. It took a little at first to get it to drip all the time because the washer swells a bit when it gets wet. I have to refill the bucket every day. Robins seem to be the only birds that love splashing in the birdbath, as we see hardly anything else there.

I had hung an oriole feeder on the panel and put grape jelly in it, but we never saw the oriole at it, so I took it down again. We know we have an oriole around because we see and hear it sometimes, but it never came to any of our feeders. In early spring a Chipping Sparrow made its nest in one of the hanging baskets.

Last of all, I found a wooden bench to put in front of the birdbath and put two round stepping stones leading to it. Then I sat back to watch it grow. This summer was unusually dry, though, so I watered nearly every day.

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