Pretty Much Just Pictures

I am adding pictures from photographs taken through the years, having recently recovered a stash of them, sent by my brother in Portland. They aren’t in this batch – I sure fooled you guys! – but they will come soon enough. I am delighted, but it’s a lot of work and I suddenly have become busy with various other different things, including actual work.

But I have this immense stash of pictures I want to do something with and I figured, what the heck – I’ll just post a bunch of them and arrange them loosely around themes which occasionally bear scrutiny – in particular the “Side Yard” issue, budgets and salvaging a landscape in total.  Some are from projects, others from my travels both locally and in Portland and Reno, in particular Springtime shots from one of my very favorite Rhododendron Groves, Crystal Springs, in Portland. Without further ado –

First a look at a freshly-planted 4 month old project in Reno – front yard view. This shows the effort at bringing down lawn sizes to more manageable and less-water-consumptive size. The big leafed plant in the foreground is a gorgeous red-blooming giant Hibiscus.

(Click all images to enlarge)


Narrow Side Yard Alert!!

These following pictures answer a question: “What the heck do we do with these narrow pieces alongside the home?”

It’s actually a reasonable question and one that I eventually began taking a particular delight in. The fact is – a lot! The picture below features an arbor constructed by Steve, the homeowner and a crackerjack carpenter which is seen as an added gorgeous extension of the rear yard itself. But what’s under the arbor in quite lengthy, drawn-out fashion is a long narrow patch of Earth now displaying not a large number of much of anything –  about 5 small Aspen trees, a Spruce and a few shrubs, all alongside a pathway.


At the end of the path, we find this view, which very much satisfied Steve’s wife, Mary, who worked away in her office,  just mere feet away online, with her window open, gratefully listening to the spattering of water off the top of this lanky but space-clearing bubble rock. (pardon the hose,  😉  )


The point of this small exercise is that it does not take much at all to give yourself a present of a nice-looking side yard, if you are patient. And, the fact is, ways can be found to very much enjoy the area, surprising guests as well as yourself with simple beauty and – sometimes – some gorgeous blooms and foliage. Such strange transformations can lead one to preferring these areas to all the others, in fact. Go figure!


Even if the area is used as a repository for chemicals, compost bundles, sheds or whatever supposed nightmare one has in store for it, this does not mean it is either non functional or destined to be one nice-looking doggone area. Salvaging a side yard is easy and cool. A few plants, a little foresight, Vi-ola!



I have a better picture than this of this particular, very spare-looking side yard but I can’t find it currently. So this one will have to do. This is actually something of a favorite of mine, believe it or not. Needless to say, this was almost immediately after it was laid in. Since that time, much plant growth has occurred.


Yet another side yard alert –


This, of course, is a picture of a dog. The dog’s name is “Pyro”, if you can imagine. He is waiting for someone to help him eat and destroy that poor basketball, in no set order. Actually, his work seems half done already. Don’t you love the more senseless blogs?

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Moving along, now – rapidly and apologetically – (not really, Pyro is a great and loyal dog – he just likes killing basketballs. I mean who among us is perfect? Everyone I know has at least one vice. Heck, I know a guy with dozens!)

Anyways, let’s visit the North West! This here picture is some ferns.

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This here picture is some more ferns and a creek.

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So?……….  “What,” you are asking, “is this fern garden dealie?”

Well, if you look at the next picture, that “fern garden” sits below – in the shadow of – this shrub (or should I say, “this large cluster of shrubs”):

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These are big plants is what.

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Viburnum Mariesii (Doublefile Viburnum) has always been a big favorite of mine. The blooms resemble the more exotic Hydrangea’s. Here is a cool sort of 2-3 picture time lapse of some blooms:

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And here they are, “pruned for effect”:

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Other wonders –         My daughter, her Peace Sign T shirt and her cousin, the gorgeous Zoe!


A model home we prettied up, including this little water feature and cement bridge.


Some Cherry Blossoms

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A few more

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The Willamette River in Portland

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Want some wheat? Fill ‘er up!

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I could go on.

Here is what is affectionately known in Louisville, Kentucky as “The Bucket”.  😉 Unfortunate naming rights belong to Yum! Foods, who paid $13 million to plaster their name on this gorgeous and unbelievable arena, seating 22,000 for basketball. But UL fans have adapted well, including a student section at ball games who wear Kentucky Fried Chicken buckets on their heads and who call themselves – imagine! – The Bucketheads!

It sits interestingly in the skyline, with this ‘under coinstruction’ view taken from a spot on the River Walk, a gorgeous park which runs alongside the Ohio River.

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Well, it got even better!

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