I was on the lawnmower the other day when genius struck.
It’s not an unusual occurrence. Riding my beloved John Deere in long circles for the hour it takes to mow either front or back is for me a time to let my mind roam. Every time I mow I feel I notice something new – a dogwood branch or raspberry vine hanging over the fence, the forsythia I forgot I planted by the shed suddenly stretching tall, a nest perched at the edge of a tree. Then in noticing, I start to daydream and, next thing you know, I’m amped to write ten more blogs of ideas that I have to start implementing!
At any rate, the other day as I was cutting the corners around the porch’s flowerbeds, a thought popped into my head. It’s the side of the porch that gets very little light of any kind. This year the rhododendron that I planted there bloomed for the first time in three years, and the lavender I planted two years ago has taken off. The latest addition is a regular spearmint that I planted after it served its time as a wedding centerpiece. That mint is loving life and taking over. Unfortunately, it’s not particularly exciting in terms of aesthetics.
So I’m riding on the mower and I start thinking to myself, “Anybody can grow an herb garden. What I need is a mojito garden.” Then, because I was hot and a little punchy, I started giggling to myself as I pictured the sign: “Made for Muddling.” (If you’re not a mojito drinker, it’s a rum-based drink where you “muddle” mint leaves in the glass to release their flavor.)
And now I find that I’m thoroughly excited about this ugly little plot.
This garden is a challenge I hadn’t had the energy to take on yet because I knew the key to this area would be, rather than evicting the ugly tenants, finding a way to make them more visually interesting. I’m not normally a “country chic” type of person, but the way this little garden is hidden, I think a few spunky cute signs might do the trick. I’ve been doing some online reading to find out what Dremel accessory might be most helpful in making my “muddling” sign, with the goal of adding new types of mints (the one with the tag in the front is an orange mint) and creating stakes with their names painted on. Since obviously this is a plant that likes to travel, I’m also looking for creative ways to contain new additions, such as the chocolate mint on the other side of the garden that now I’m eager to transplant. I think I may have hit on something.
The other day the pup and I were out walking in the woods when I found the stump pictured above. It reminded me of a piece of driftwood, but with a rich green moss growing at one end. I picked it up, brushed it off, and settled it into my garden behind this lavender. Next, I added a bit of dirt to the already bowl-shaped roots and sunk a few strands of spearmint into my new “planter.” I love my stump, but it’s lonely. Right now I’m on the lookout for a few round, somewhat-hollow additions to serve as planters – and sign holders – for the many exotic mints available out there.
I’ve got a busy week ahead, but I’m setting this as my goal for the next week. In the meantime, I would love to hear your suggestions for fun mint-themed signs, tips for making those signs, and your favorite types of mints – or mojitos!