You may have noticed RDR has a new theme. For my birthday last September, and in honor on my blogging anniversary this month, I decided on a new design which better reflects Oklahoma gardening and my personality. The photos are all mine, but I did not create the design. Although it was a long time coming, it was well worth the wait.
The new theme and blog anniversary made me reflect on other changes at RDR this year.
We installed a new irrigation system which has already made maintenance a lot easier. No longer do I drag hoses and switch the system manually. HH said it was my anniversary gift from 10 years prior. I planted Crossfire Fescue II grass seed, and I’m overjoyed at all the little plants which grew. Just call it my blue green baby. For the first time in the 20 years I’ve lived here, I have grass in my front yard instead of just red sand! I know lawns are “out”, but I still love my small green space. In fact, I commune with it as I sit on my swing. The backyard, which is almost all garden, is now watered with a Netafim drip irrigation system. It took me forever to understand why my irrigation guy kept saying Netafim, and then I saw the brand name on the box. Duh.
HH and I built a brick path in the front yard and edged the front bed in preparation for the irrigation installation.
We also graveled the paths in the back garden with river rock recycled from a volunteer Boy Scout Eagle Project. Because it’s river rock, it is somewhat slippery. In spring, I will dump some “fines” in the paths to make them more solid.
I turned most of the vegetable garden into perennial beds comprising a loose prairie style of gardening suited to beds framed by discarded railroad ties. I returned to growing veggies next to the perennials which, I believe confuses many pests. I had the best tomatoes ever this year and no tomato worms.
Starting this blog a year ago this month was one of the best decisions I ever made. I get to express myself, and I’ve made friends all over this big blue planet.
Changes are also afoot in the garden itself. Although the days are warm, the nights are quite cool. Because of the cooler temperatures, the bumblebees take more naps, and everything in the garden seems less urgent than only a couple of months ago. I could almost pet the bumbles, which I’ve heard is possible, but I just can’t bring myself to do it.
Although some plants are still blooming, most are tattered and showing their age, a little like the wrinkles we all get with life. See what I mean? It’s all right. It shows she has character.
It’s really beautiful, Dee! I, too, am in awe – of the blog, the garden, and your ability to get so much done.
Thank you so much. I’m glad you enjoy it.~~Dee
Cheryl in Austin says
Love the new look! Makes me miss Oklahoma…I went to school in Stillwater and still have friends there who garden…your blog is just beautiful! Happy Birthday!
Cheryl in Austin´s last blog post..Bloom Day! November 15th ’08 Eve of the 1st Freeze
Hi Cheryl, thank you so much for stopping by, and for your kind words.~~Dee
Annie in Austin says
How can it be only one year, Dee! Oh yeah…that’s in “blog years” which feel different from normal solar years ;-]
The new design is beautiful, more easily readable, and seems to load a lot faster – with the blog tuned up and the sprinkler system running – you’re good to go!
Annie at the Transplantable Rose
I like your new blog layout. Having a good irrigation system is well work the expense. I would like to redesign mine by adding a couple of new valves to deal with some cacti and also planter beds. I’m tired of hauling water to roses and other plantings that need extra water. If I changed the their current valve settings to accodate the planter beds, the other stuff would drown!
Aiyana´s last blog post..Green Thumb Sunday ~ Rose Skills Lacking
Dee, you have accomplished an amazing amount of work this summer. I am in awe.
Mr. McGregor's Daughter says
Let’s be counter-cultural together & enjoy how a lawn sets off a garden so well. I just can’t wrap my mind around the concept that I’ve been blogging longer (2 months) than you! You seemed like an old pro right from the beginning, so I didn’t know for a long time that yours was a “new” blog. I think I learned that in Austin. I’m so glad you started blogging & that we got to meet & hang together in Austin. I love visiting your earthy blog. This new design is so you.
Mr. McGregor’s Daughter´s last blog post..Busy as Bees
Look forward to following your blog. It is a great feeling to see a redesign up and doing what you imagined it to do. Congrats!
compostinmyshoe´s last blog post..In Persuit of Cycle
It’s nice to reflect on what you’ve accomplished and I love that blogging helps. I like your redesign too.
Susan Tomlinson says
What a beautiful blogsite and garden! I especially love the photos of those flowers I know so well and love so much.
Susan Tomlinson´s last blog post..Increasing Autumn Tree Perfection Productivity
The new design is very nice. I learned how to install the netafim system this summer at the Xeric Garden in Forney. It went in very easily and works great off a rainwater harvesting system.
Hey Dee, Congrats again on your blog turning one. The new design is awesome.
Curtis´s last blog post..Cone Flowers this Summer
Dee- I love the new design. The rusty brown is so earthy and warm. Very welcoming! Boy you have been busy! It looks awesome!
Theresa/GardenFreshLiving´s last blog post..Share the Love Monday…
I like the new look – it is very pleasing on the eyes. Your roses are exquisite.
Phillip´s last blog post..Fall planting
A lovely blog design, Dee. The colours are gorgeous as is your new header. It’s greeat that you have drip irrigation now! Have a good weekend!!
kate´s last blog post..The magical life of flowers
Yolanda Elizabet says
I like the new design of your blog, very snazzy.
Happy first blogiversary Dee and that many more may follow.
BTW it’s high time you try petting a bumble bee, they are ever so soft.
Yolanda Elizabet´s last blog post..At Long Last
Nancy Bond says
I like the new look very much! Congrats on your first blog-iversary. Most plants are tattered and showing their age in my part of the world, too. 🙂
Nancy Bond´s last blog post..Seasons: Extra Sensory Perception
Really looks great Dee! Can’t believe it’s been a year!
Carol, May Dreams Gardens says
Love the new design. How is this fair that you have both a new irrigation system and a great blog design?!
Carol, May Dreams Gardens´s last blog post..Warning: This Post is About Hoes!
susan harris says
Looks fabulous and congrats on your first, very successful year.
The only suggestion I have is to use some padding around your photos (3-5 pixels). I’ve been criticized for not using enough padding myself and quickly towed the line (because I agree it looks better with). S
susan harris´s last blog post..Sustainable Gardening News, October ‘08
Oh, honey, I love your new design! And you are an inspiration for charting a course, adjusting as you go, and to keep going to see how much one can build beautiful spaces, inside, outside, and internet. 🙂
CurtissAnn´s last blog post..Hi, from Lovely Mobile
Your new look is just beautiful and, I think, is a much truer reflection of your garden and your place on the earth. Congratulations on your one year anniversary. My own gardening blog will be celebrating one year next week, but you put me in the shade with all your accomplishments.
Okie Sister says
The new look is great.
I had been meaning to put a red dirt road as my banner since day one. Now I will have to go to plan B so I don’t look like a copycat.
Although by the time I get around to creating a banner, another year may have passed and you might have another design.
Time does fly, doesn’t it.
I look forward to reading your blog for many years to come.
Congrats and I love it too. I like the sidebar so much more. The large print is good on my old eyes. It is beautiful just like you.
Anna´s last blog post..Christmas Card 2 of Old Salem
Thank you, Anna! That was so nice. Just think if we’d never blogged, we wouldn’t have become such good friends.~~Dee
I love the new design of your blog Dee. The colors are just perfect & the new header is very creative. Your garden is looking like it got a nice facelift too. I love the arch with the path.
Racquel, I’m so glad you like it.~~Dee
bill / prairie point says
I’ll join the chorus exclaiming over the new design. Love the colors and the new banner. Good job.
Thank you, Bill. Your opinion means a lot to me.~~Dee
Dee, I do love the new look very much! Do you feel it’s more you? Sometimes change is just what is needed…
Go ahead and pet the bumbles…they are pretty docile in the mornings or the cool afternoons. I do whenever I am in the garden!
Gail´s last blog post..A Walk Through The Garden on A Fall Day
Gail, I do feel it’s like me. I don’t know about the bumbles though.~~Dee
Lisa at Greenbow says
Oh Dee I love your new design. I can read it so much easier. It fits your personality just perfect. Happy blogaversary.
Thank you, Lisa, so much.~~Dee
I love your new color! Our area (we are new as here as of May), has a lot of iron-ore rock. Many people have made retaining walls out of them. They are beautiful! BUT nothing is as pretty as green grass!!! I can just hear it waving back to you with love vibes!! Big changes huh? I’m loving this season, thanks for sharing!
Thanks, Carla. I’m so glad you think it’s a good color. Perhaps I should do a post about why the soil is so red?~~Dee
Carla´s last blog post..Son-Day: "Lord Move, or Move Me"
Karen - An Artists Garden says
I love the new look Dee – very earthy. Happy “blogaversary” too.
Karen – An Artists Garden´s last blog post..The Possibilities are Endless
Thank you, Karen.~~Dee
Drip irrigation? When you send that, tingles went down my spine, angels sang, and a light shone forth from the heavens. I’m saying I am sure envious of it.
Benjamin´s last blog post..Final Planting List
I know, Benjamin. I just about sang an Alleluia chorus when it was finally finished. I can’t believe I have it either. What a blessing.~~Dee
Your new blog looks fabulous, and so does the garden. I’m picturing you sitting on your swing and thinking about what to write for your next post.
Victoria´s last blog post..Tosh on television
Thanks, Victoria. Sometimes, I actually take the laptop out there and sit, but not today. It’s raining cats and dogs.~~Dee
Brenda Kula says
So true about the aging. I do love your new look. Somehow the way the word “Rambling” is shaped in the banner makes you think more of… rambling! I’m so glad you got your irrigation system. Don’t know what I’d do without the sprinkling system. My life would definitely be tougher! (Love the sidebar colors.)
Brenda Kula´s last blog post..Finding Porgie
Brenda, I thought of you when we installed the sprinklers, and also when we put in the paths (originally, if you remember, I didn’t want gravel paths because of the heat.)~~Dee
I like your new style. The header is great. Congratulations on your one year anniversary!
You can pet the bumblebees;) When they are cold and sleepy. When they are more active, they will avoid your hand. I’ve never been stung except once when I threatened their nest–not intentionally of course.
Marnie, I would like to pet them. I’ll try to do it this week and let you all know.~~Dee
That Red Dirt road reminds me of the one I traveled so many times in my youth. I like your new banner, Dee and your garden looks lovely .
carolyngail´s last blog post..GARDEN BLOGGERS’ BLOOM DAY -OCTOBER
Thanks, Carolyn Gail.~~Dee
Hi Dee, I love this new color, it is so Oklahoma! You have been busy in that garden of yours as well as on the blog and writing, you must be a good multi-tasker! After this year with the hoses and the drought the drip irrigation sounds good. It would be hard to know where to put it to the best use and too expensive to put it everywhere. I like your idea to confuse the insects by putting the veggies in with the perennials, it might confuse the rabbits too. Love this look!
Frances´s last blog post..Beauty At Casa Brokenbeat
Thanks and no, Frances, I’m really not a good multi-tasker. Other stuff, like housework, just slides while I write and play outside. I never thought about the rabbits. Try it and let me know.~~Dee
The new design is just gawjus! It’s definitely a much livelier and more personal look.
I’d been lamenting my lack of a dedicated veggie bed but this post has encouraged me to plant some veggies in amongst the roses and perennials to see how they do.
Cindy´s last blog post..A Rainy Bloom Day
Liking the new design a lot.
Esther Montgomery says
It’s like coming to a house-warming party!
What surprises me is that you have been blogging for such a comparitively short time.
I started the February after you and found your blog quite soon after that . . . and I felt like a terrible novice when I visited – you seemed so very well established and I truly believed you had been blogging for several years already – everything seemed so settled into place and organised!
Congratulations on your first year – and all the work that has gone into it.
Esther Montgomery´s last blog post..ESTHER TO ERIC
Wow! I love the redesign! That red dirt color is now splashed appropriately across your blog, the title is big and easy to read, and you “Polaroids” from your garden are enticing. Well done, Dee.
Pam/Digging´s last blog post..East Austin garden blogger party
Your sidebar seems a lot more readable, and the colors evoke the red dirt landscape.
Kathy´s last blog post..Keeping rosemary alive indoors
Thanks, Kathy, for making the type larger.~~Dee
Dee … the new site is gorgeous ! .. the reddish tone does make you think of where you are and the soil ? you work with. I am so jealous of your irrigation system .. I’m still dragging hoses around but perhaps next year I will finally get sorted too !
Go on .. pet a bumblebee .. you know you want to girl ! haha
Joy´s last blog post..Grassy Rattles
Mary Ann says
oh man, how DID you add your signature? Plus, great post and I am so glad you play in the garden w/me! 0x0x0
Mary Ann´s last blog post..A Day in the Life of the Idaho Gardener
MA, the signature is just some code on the posts.php. Kathy can do it for you by copying my code, deciding what type font you want and then placing it in the posts.php. Almost anything can be accomplished with money. LOL.~~Dee