I don’t mind a few imperfections but I have a psychological limit on what I will pay for those imperfections. I thought this melted wine bottle with numerous imperfections might make an interesting piece of hanging yard art. It did not have a price sticker at the thrift store. I took it to the cashier.

“I’m kinda interested in this but I have a psychological limit of $1.50,” I told her.

She came back with, “The lowest button on my register is $1.99.”

“Okay, that’s above my limit.”

She proceeds with ringing up my $2.99 item and announced it would be $1.79. At that point, I remembered seeing a sign that all green tag items were 40% off. Immediately, I renewed my bargain. “Can I have the wine bottle for 40% off?”

She pulled it back out from under the counter and sold it to me for $1.19. So I got it cheaper than their lowest cash register button when I had originally been willing to pay 30 cents more. Isn’t that crazy?


My friend Cee, who I’ve known for about a dozen years, has some interesting yard art.

She and her husband built this super cool bottle garden.
Mulched inside the bottles, river rocks and landscape edging outside.

Cee’s husband also acquired a hand plow, and not having a compulsion to play in the dirt like some of us, turned it into a focal point in one of their garden beds. I’d like to give that plow a wild ride through some dirt to compare it to my plow. Alas, Mr. and Mrs. Cee don’t do dirt; they cover it with grass and flowers.

Hand plow as yard art – notice the two copper pipes holding it up


While visiting with Mr. and Mrs. Golf Cart in their backyard garden in May, I admired their wind chime. I mentioned I had always wanted one of the larger ones but, at $89, they were out of my price range. I explained that I was a dollar store kinda gal. Mr. Golf Cart said, “Bring me an old frying pan and I’ll make you one.”

Poor guy was probably joking and thinking I had no access to an old fry pan. Unfortunately for him, we were in the process of clearing out Poppie’s house. In her later years, Momma was something of a pack rat and I had no trouble finding 3 old, Teflon frying pans that should have gone out with the trash many years ago.

I gave these to Mr. Golf Cart and told him he could have two of the frying pans if he would make me one wind chime.

In no time at all, Mr. Golf Cart arrived at my front door tooting the horn on his golf cart. He wanted to know where to hang the wind chime. Can you believe such generosity? I would have had trouble trying to install something like that. I used to have more courage with saws and hammers back in my youth. Now I’m a gutless wonder.

Those of you who are fans of recycling and upcycling will be pleased that Mr. Golf Cart made my wind chime from recycled parts:

Momma's old frying pan with the handle removed
Momma’s old frying pan with the handle removed

The tubes of the wind chime were left over from a screened canopy Mr. Golf Cart had in his yard.

Frying pan with tubes below
Frying pan with tubes below

The wind catcher (the middle piece that clangs on the tubes) is from the fenders of his tow dolly, a 2-wheel trailer designed to carry the front wheels of your car while the rear wheels remain on the road.

Windchime - windcatcher-6176
The wind catcher
Windchime - windcatcher close up-6181
Close-up of the wind catcher

Only the 1/16th stainless cables, the crimpers for them, and some miscellaneous hardware was new. You can see how the crimpers work on the stainless cables in the first photo.

Delivered and installed
Delivered and installed

I was impressed beyond measure with the stainless cables because most wind chimes are made with fabric cord which rots in just a few seasons. I am now convinced that making one’s own wind chime is the way to go.

I finally got it painted in late November. I used a Rust-oleum Metallic spray paint whose lid color looked bronze. The paint looks antique gold to me. Nevertheless, this is a fine looking piece of Yard Art made for me by a fine neighbor.



When you write a blog, your readers get to know you long before you get to know them in the Comments. Even though it’s probably obvious that I am a few sparklers short of a genuine firecracker, some of my readers summoned the courage to visit me and my gardens in June.

My friend Evie came but she’s been coming out here for years because she won’t allow me to come to her house. I was banned after I talked her into a small landscaping project that had her neighbors pulling up their lawn chairs to witness the unbelievable.

BeckyB signed on as a blog subscriber about a year ago. She visited in early June when the daylilies and hydrangeas were in their prime. We did not happen to commemorate the visit with a photo but you can find Becky B’s photo at Mandarin Garden Club Report.

Meta has been a blog subscriber more than two years. Although she lives south of me by two hours, she came up Saturday with three family members (in case I was scary crazy) who graciously sat in my rocking chairs while Meta and I swapped seeds and plants. She brought me two kinds of daylilies and taught me about daylily proliferations. I was also very excited to get some of her peacock ginger which was unknown to me until she mentioned it a while back.

Meta came early to beat the heat but it was one of those days when the the heat index hit 101. Here’s a photo of us two hours after we had melted on the garden path.

meta and me-2773
Me on the left; Meta on the right.
Photo by Mariea

Meta whipped out her ipad – everyone seems to have one of these gadgets – and shared photos of her garden. I thought her clay pot border was ingenious and asked for permission to publish it on the blog. She used what she had and accumulated more clay pots over the years from garage sales and anywhere she could find them. She likes that the different heights — 3-1/2 inch, 4-1/2 inch, 5 inch, 5-1/2 inch, 6 inch, 7 inch, 8-1/2 inch and every kind of width — make it visually interesting.

I know the clay is more restful to the eye and natural looking in the garden but the artist in me can’t help but wonder what it would look like with a little paint. Wild metallic colors of shiny teal and purple on alternating pots. Whoa-ho-ho, I love purple and shiny.

Clay Pot Border-2
Isn’t this great?
Photo by Meta.

The yellow wheelbarrow in the right-hand corner of the photo is Meta’s rooting bed.