Sydney enjoys having a front garden full of flowers, and he took me seriously when I said I wanted a long row of lavender. This stretch along our driveway attracts several kinds of bees, which means there’s a continuous drone coming from this part of the yard for much of early summer.
Lavender is also great fun to harvest: cut stems with your head amidst the lavender blooms, with bees delicately buzzing around you, stop to smell your hands every now and then, hang bunches to dry in the garage (which now smells wonderful), and strip any leftover stems for lavender sachets. This year I made roughly 35 big bunches from that little row, and I’ve already sold all I have at the farmer’s market. That should help pay for the replacement plants when these get too overgrown in a few years.
Sydney also filled the planters on the porch and our hanging baskets with flowers. Well, he filled three of the four hanging baskets; a mourning dove apparently took a liking to our baskets, and hatched two pairs of young in one this summer. Unfortunately, when she came back for a third round, she decided she preferred one of the baskets that is full of flowers, so we currently have two flowering baskets, one that’s bare, and one that is full of flowers and a hidden mourning dove. I imagine things will get a bit crowded once her young hatch. Our flowers may not come out the best for it, but it’s great being able to watch her progress. She even lets me water the basket, as long as I move slowly (yes, that’s a challenge for me).