Gardening where the sidewalk ends

Spring on My Street March 25, 2009

Ah, spring! Out in my parking strip garden, I can see the lovely sights of bulbs blooming, birds flitting around, perennials awakening from their long winter nap, and to top it all off… a port-a-potty for the construction crew that’s been jack-hammering up a storm down the street.

Tulips and Honey Bucket

Don’t you just love that name, Honey Bucket? Luckily, they moved it later in the day.

I like this view a lot better, sans sanican. The tulips are starting to get a little frowsy, but they’ve been the only think blooming out there for weeks so they’ve done their job. Now spring really feels like it’s on they way, they can bid their farewell.

Tulipa greigii in parking strip

Looks like I’m not the only one interested in blogging about strip gardens. For related posts, you can visit Raingardener at Gardening by Trial and Error and Susan at The Bicycle Garden (in Texas they call ’em hell strips – Susan also recently wrote most eloquently on the public spaces at the university where she teaches), and VP of Veg Plotting in the UK also has a meme going about public plantings.


16 Responses to “Spring on My Street”

  1. Kris Says:

    Hello! What a thrill to stumble across your terrific blog – I have been wanting to plant my parking strip for YEARS but no one in my neighborhood does it (I’m in suburbs of Wash, DC and zone 6). The laws here are simultaneously vague and restrictive. My yard is planted to the hilt but I could never bring myself to cross that sidewalk, even though it’s where I get most of my full sun, dagnabbit. I used to search the web for photos of what other people do for the strip and found very little, but obviously I stopped looking by the time you started your blog!

    Finally last fall I thought screw it, I’ll start a revolution. I bought about 25 plants, deeply discounted since they were already dormant. I figure if the city destroys this patch in some way then my loss won’t be too high, except for the sweat equity. Can’t wait to swap out that boring grass for color and texture! Maybe that’ll inspire my neighbors to do the same. In any event, your website is a *wonderful* inspiration and happily many of the plants you’ve photographed I can grow here too, that is when the rabbits & squirrels aren’t tempting me to become violent…



  2. Blossom Says:

    Beautiful and the color is stunning. Love them

  3. Catherine Says:

    I see lots of green popping up in you parking strip. The tulips are such a pretty color. When my daughter was about 5 she thought that Honey Buckets were called that because they smelled like honey, little did she know…

  4. Grace Says:

    Your tulips are magnificent. They must be an exceptionally early variety. I’ve seen nary a tulip anywhere around here… not yet. It was a treat to see yours. Must check out the other strip gardens posts and maybe head out to snap a few photos of my own. 🙂

  5. Yeah, Honey bucket is an interesting name- somehow it doesn’t quite fit! Lovely tulips, however! Happy spring!

  6. Aerie-el Says:

    I’m amazed to see your tulips at the end of their glory there. My daffodils have yet to bloom! Wow, what a difference about 500 feet in elevation makes!
    Honey bucket. I won’t even go there.

  7. Frowsy’s a great word for a tulip just past prime!

  8. RainGardener Says:

    Yes frowsy is different. Great post and your strip is coming to life. I don’t think I’ve ever been so anxious to see spring. Your tulips look huge – very nice they are. Thanks for the link Karen.

  9. Racquel Says:

    I agree the view is much better minus the porta-potty, lol. Necessary I guess for the construction people though. 😉 Those tulips look great, a wonderful sign of things to come in your area.

  10. Megan Says:

    I’m still waiting. Tulips have foliage here, but I don’t know if they’ll ever bloom. Might be my fault, I always cut mine back too early once I get tired of looking at them. Do you have the patience to let them die back at their natural pace?

  11. Michele Says:

    Your tulips are great! We got another good frost here this morning, had to scrape the windshield! Ugh.

  12. Jen Says:

    Hahaha – I thought Honey Bucket was the name of the tulips!! I was thinking “They’re perfect where they are – why did they move them?” and “will they survive??! I must pay better attention.

  13. LOL…gotta love a honey bucket garden ornament! What sweet tulips, Kim

  14. kris at t.m. Says:

    I just realized that my freebee bait barrel rain barrels are the honey bucket color scheme. No wonder I don’t mind their looks – I kind of miss those things! (Is that weird? the portolets here are not nearly so … eloquent…?) Great tulips – is that General DeWitt?

  15. Love the tulips, I’ve enver been able to plant them as they are real deer favvos, but this autumn I’ll buy a load of them and plant either in containers or in ground… My girls (6 & 8) never fail to laugh at the word honey bucket, they really don’t understand how they can be named so…

  16. […] my impulse bulb purchases often turn out to be busts. I’ve had a few lucky finds (especially these species tulips, the hands-down winners of Best Bulb in my garden this spring) but the rest are usually either kind […]

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