BILOWZ ASSOCIATES INC. is an award winning landscape architectural design firm with a proven philosophy: "Creating Design with Harmony & Balance."
Our company blog, Annie's Gardening Corner, takes a sneak peek at how we balance our own love for everything green + a place to find inspiration, garden ideas and landscape design tips.

To browse our award winning landscape design portfolios, click on our company website at WWW.BILOWZASSOCIATES.COM

Monday, October 24, 2011

Red Sky in the Morning




































This unknown quote accompanies an early morning image for this Monday morning’s blog post.  “Don't tell me the sky is the limit, there are footprints on the moon!” I’ll be taking a slice of time to discover some new footprints. In that interim of discovery, the blog posts may be sporadic! Plus, the gardening season is winding down, which makes it’s a perfect time to rethink the best way to keep sending you my daily gardening and design tidbits in this every changing maze of social media. And how to get you interacting during the hibernation of our gardens!

Image by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Friday, October 21, 2011

End of the Year Models




































It’s never too late to find the end of the year model plants for the garden. A long-time favorite of ours, Amsonia hubrichtii is one of those plants that finally made it into this year’s horticultural headlines with its well-deserved honors as the 2011 Perennial plant of the year. http://www.perennialplant.org/documents/poy2011.pdf

Why do I mention this end of the year model now? Besides its wispy texture and its dainty flower, the fall foliage on this plant is stunning and absolutely phenomenal. Its amazing color prevents that perennial border from shutting down too soon. And isn’t a lot of why we garden about color?

Although the timetable for planting perennials is a tad too late, finding that perfect location for adding one of these late season models to your borders can be in the works now. So if you are looking for a bit of advice on a perfect perennial, try one of our all-time favorites.

To end this Friday’s post on a light note, an Erma Bombeck quote fits in quite nicely. “When your mother asks, "Do you want a piece of advice?" it is a mere formality. It doesn't matter if you answer yes or no. You're going to get it anyway.”  Enjoy your weekend.



































Close up Images of Amsonia hubrichtii fall color by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Thursday, October 20, 2011

No Complaints

Unearthing our list of daily complaints comes very easily but if we choose, finding the good and the positive  can outnumber those grumbles. We just have to look hard enough. Having trouble finding one amidst all the negative spin? Take a minute to read this article about this New Jersey landscape company that has implemented a ‘go-give’ attitude as part of their business model.  http://www.lawnandlandscape.com/ll-1020-Business-Builder-community-spirit-landscape.aspx  It’s nothing unique or new. However small or large, whatever industry we work in, we’re each given the same 24 hours to make choices. Is it unearthing daily complaints or creating a ‘go-give attitude?

Don’t know where to start? Take Mother Teresa’s no complaint attitude. “Let us not be satisfied with just giving money. Money is not enough, money can be got, but they need your hearts to love them. So, spread your love everywhere you go.” That’s a great place to start! And don’t forget to post your positive story.

Time for a go-give Thursday! Annie

3D SketchUp Image and Design by Bilowz Associates Inc. – A Memorial Park in the Making

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Most Notable Moment




































The Scottish Philosopher, Thomas Carlyle provides the perfect words for this wordless Wednesday. “In every phenomenon the beginning remains always the most notable moment.” Enjoy this colorful season before it fades away.




































Images by Ann Bilowz  

P.S. This year’s foliage has been a bit sparse due to the effects of Hurricane Irene but there still are notable moments worth taking in!

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Seconds Anyone?




































Don’t fret. Apple picking season is not over yet. Think you missed the best of the best apples to make your favorite treats? Grab yourself some seconds at a local farm. No need to use the shiny perfect ones, especially when you plan to bake or cook them! These apples deserve a second chance.

But don’t go bonkers over apple pie – in terms of making one that is. Don’t have time to roll out a crust? The frozen pie crusts are a cinch to use and in less than ten minutes prep time, (cooking time not included) this pie can be yours. Looks like someone already claimed this one!
So that’s it in a pie shell. Hope you found your dose of sweetness for the day because as George Will points out, "Pessimism is as American as apple pie - frozen apple pie with a slice of processed cheese." So start each day from scratch and don’t bypass the seconds.

Images by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Privilege of Hurrying




































With the cold and flu season suddenly upon us, the privilege of hurrying and scurrying is on temporary hold. Desperate to move quickly, the symptoms only worsen and you find yourself in one big heap, just like the pile of leaves gathering on the front lawn. Long ago, Tertullian said, “Indeed it is better to postpone, lest either we complete too little by hurrying, or wander too long in completing it.”  

Great advice but who has time to postpone the fall garden chores? But if you must delay, at least get out in the beautiful fall air and grab some pics. Fresh air is a cure for the common cold, isn’t it?



















Or the cure could be my last image: a brew of spices, fruits and miscellaneous herbs steaming on the stove. I was simply trying to create the new organic Vicks!


























While the attempt to hurry our cold denies the undeniable – rest, can we allow fallen leaves to gather in the plant beds? The garden must be neat as a pin before the first snow flurry so elves may come in handy to help with the fall garden clean-up list.  Not that snow is in the immediate forecast but just in case you need a quick review, here’s a definite must-do list from the trusted Annie archives. http://blog.bilowzassociates.com/2009/10/keep-your-beds-clean.html

So for those that have the privilege of hurrying, this set of chores should be completed soon! Elves, where are you?

Images by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Ultimate Result

Samuel Johnson once stated something very profound about home. “To be happy at home is the ultimate result of all ambition…” Simple translation: being able to enjoy what you establish at home takes practice. It’s one of the reasons why creating indoor and outdoor spaces are so important. But it’s not just a matter of designing and creating 'beautiful' in and around our homes; it’s a matter of enjoying these very creations. That is when the ultimate result is completed even when the work is still in process!



















Images taken by Greg Bilowz
(Design work by Greg Bilowz/Bilowz Associates Inc.)

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Dabble of Fall Cheer

















“Cheerfulness is the very flower of health.” A very good proverb, especially when one of those seasonal head colds has flattened me. So as I drag myself around with cough drops, Kleenex and sniffles, today’s post is about a beautiful woodland flower worth talking about – the Anemone. Come to think about it, I have yet to give this wonderful perennial its own moment in the sun. First, a quick bit of DNA on this plant. It is part of the Buttercup family, commonly known as Windflower and you can find varieties that shall bloom in one of your color categories.

In case you were looking for a particular variety, dwarf and compact to be precise, and one that adds cheerfulness to your fall borders, check out this ‘Blooms of Bressingham’ link for Anemone ‘Pretty Lady Emily.’http://bloomsofbressinghamplants.com/products/details/23/anemone-'pretty-lady-emily'.html?pop=0&keyword=anemon You can also look at the other hupehensis varieties on your visit there; of course, all in the ‘Pretty Lady’ series.

So if on this rainy Thursday you can’t find too much cheerfulness or you aren’t feeling like the flower of health, set up your plant wish list and consider dabbling with Anemones.

P.S. Not to be confused with these Anemones! Although that would look pretty cool in the garden.




















Images from the Internet

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Bridging Into Cooler Weather




































On this wordless Wednesday, here’s an atmospheric shot of that inevitable bridge we garden lovers must cross as we saunter into cooler weather.  John Bailey sums this image up best from "Autumn," a haiku year.

falling leaves
hide the path
so quietly

Image by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Pounds of Promises





































Mae West once said, “An ounce of performance is worth pounds of promises.” That’s why you should never make promises you can’t keep, especially when it comes to the garden. If you want low-maintenance, consider asphalt. And don’t be fooled by asphalt because even that requires maintenance.

But if you truly desire beautiful flower gardens, green lawn, or even just a few tomatoes in a veggie patch, it all requires an ounce of performance from someone. Don’t be fooled by pounds of promises. A low-maintenance garden is like one of those fad diets; short-lived. Because eventually, someone needs to perform each year, so put in that ounce of garden boost and you can get back a lot more than pounds of promises!




































Images by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Monday, October 10, 2011

Container Haven

Are you a container gardener or maybe you just love to grow herbs in your garden? Either way, repotting and reorganizing your haven of herbs or annuals should top the fall to-do garden list; that is, if you managed to salvage the fragile delicates before the frost took them down.

Requirements: schedule a few afternoons for your indoor garden transition, even if it feels like sorting out your sock drawer. It’s well worth it come wintertime when you can forgo the overpriced ‘herbs’ aisle at the grocery store. And if you like to whip up great recipes, fresh herbs can take a somewhat ordinary dish and send it to the top of the extraordinary list.

But before we tackle this transition, we must find the space. What can make this outdoor to indoor shift a bit more difficult is just that - limited indoor sun space. With that said, if you had a great outdoor herb garden and want to make the indoor transition, it takes time to weed out the lanky-looking overgrown plants. It’s an encounter session giving up on those herbs that show signs of being too stretched out and frankly too haggard to make a successful shift from outside to inside. This is where the sock draw cleaning comes in to play. You must let go of those overgrown herbs and repot and transition those that show a bit more promise for overwintering. Here are a few useful tips from a 2009 blog post to assist you in transitioning your herbs or favorite annuals. Most important is making sure you don’t over-winter any unknown bugs. So check out this post. http://blog.bilowzassociates.com/2009/09/salvage-your-herbs-and-annuals.html

And when it comes to sorting out your container haven, consider the advice of Havelock Ellis. "All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on." I’m still mingling with my choices.

Image by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Mandatory Fall Chill




































It has arrived on Friday’s doorstep, at least in New England. And with that crisp, fall chill in the air, a quote from Chili Davis seems appropriate for this morning. “Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional.” 

Many folks dislike autumn because it signals that our gardens hit the ‘Over the hill’ mark of aged and tired. But everything needs a resting period including our soil and plants. But before you let the garden be, here’s an archived blog from last October for help in getting ready for the next growing season. http://blog.bilowzassociates.com/2010/10/turning-over-new-leaf.html And for all those plants that didn’t grow up the way you wanted, there is always next spring.

Image by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Start Your Thursday with a Kick




































Pepper mania has hit; at least that is if you sowed any seeds in your spring garden. Before that expected October frost takes out any of your remaining peppers, add some Thursday kick with this quick easy drying trick.

So what’s peppering in your garden? We only plant the Ouchy mama peppers; so hot you want to make sure you’re protected when handling them. One wrong move and you know you hit the pepper’s inner white lining, which is where all the heat in the pepper resides. So consider that your surgeon general’s warning.

Want to keep this sizzling heat all winter? First, the given. Wash and lay out the peppers to air dry on paper towels.




































For the habanero chili, the king of Hots, you can cut the stems and slice in halves. Place peppers on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil. Turn your oven to 200 degrees for overnight; another sleeper button recipe. When they come out all shriveled up, you can crush them or grind them into a powder. 




































The skinny looking ones are Thai chili peppers, which can go in the oven as is. No cutting involved. Cool and store in baggies in your pantry or you can freeze them. This keeps the flavor intensity a bit longer.

So that’s Thursday’s heat as things start to cool down in the garden. It’s time to wrap it up with a profound Buddha quote, which has absolutely nothing to do with peppers, cooking, gardening but prove to be wise words nonetheless. “Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”  Same thing with peppers!

Images by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Two Pics, Two Quotes for Wordless Wednesday




































“From within or from behind, a light shines through us upon things, and makes us aware that we are nothing, but the light is all.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson







“In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.” ~Aaron Rose

Images by Ann Bilowz

P.S. A couple of past posts from the archives where you can find more info about the plants in today’s pictures.
http://blog.bilowzassociates.com/2009/10/fall-color-in-woodland-garden.html (Top Photo: Cimicifuga racemosa, commonly known as Fairy Candle)
http://blog.bilowzassociates.com/2010/01/tuesdays-with-annie-01-05-2010.html (Bottom Photo: Acer griseum, Paperbark Maple)

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Rainy Day Repeats




































Andrew Jackson once said, “Take time to deliberate; but when the time for action arrives, stop thinking and go in.” This rainy day repeat from the archives reviews the standard for our final fall planting season and maximizes Jackson’s thought process. Although you can hunt down folks in the industry that often stretch this window, take Jackson’s advice. “Stop thinking and go in.” In other words, get planting. http://blog.bilowzassociates.com/2010/10/to-do-or-not-to-do.html

If you wait too long, you might also miss the sun peeking out from behind the rain clouds or the final rose blossoms in your garden.


Images by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

Monday, October 3, 2011

Autumn Eye Catcher




































Want to add a simple yet fresh look to your late season perennial garden? Here’s a cheery shot snapped yesterday during a neighborhood walk of the Nippon Daisy (Nipponanthemum nipponicum). Although a couple of petals seem a bit tattered from the weekend rains, you have to look at its bright side. With many attributes, such as disease-resistant and drought-tolerant, this brilliant white flower and its foliage also takes up some real estate, making this autumn eye catcher a bargain plant.

Speaking of bargains, if you’ve grown nothing else but herbs in your garden, it’s time to put these tasty tidbits to good use. Whether you’re into drying or moving your planters indoors for the winter, snipping and clipping herbs adds delectable flavors to just about everything.

Need a quick Monday night recipe? Take something as basic as ground hamburger to another level when you add a few herbs with a Mediterranean twist.

Use 1 pound of hamburger for four patties, one egg, chives or scallions (depending what’s growing in your garden) salt and pepper (take whole black peppercorns and grind them in a coffee grinder used just for spices to make fresh ground pepper), a dash of dried oregano and thyme, a dash of nutmeg and bread crumbs. These are indoor burgers; not made for the grill. Fry it on medium heat in a skillet with some olive oil until centers are cooked to your perfection. The egg and the bread crumbs keep the flavorful juices inside the burger.

Serve with fresh pita bread, arugula drizzled with a fresh lemon dressing, an orzo dish with a few of these same Mediterranean flavors, a sliver of feta cheese and you’ve taken your garden herbs and created your own Hamburger Helper.

Making life pop in this month of October, from the garden to the kitchen is an ease-y way to slide into our next season. Look for the great fall bargains, whether it’s at a local nursery or in your own garden collection. Elise Boulding points us in the right direction. “Frugality is one of the most beautiful and joyful words in the English language, and yet one that we are culturally cut off from understanding and enjoying. The consumption society has made us feel that happiness lies in having things, and has failed to teach us the happiness of not having things.” In this month of October, find the many small but wonderful moments still to be cultivated in our gardens. Do not cut yourself off from this celebrated season of harvest by scurrying through it. Look for the autumn eye catchers.

Image of Nippon Daisy by Ann Bilowz

If you like this blog, remember to post and become a friend on our fan page at http://www.facebook.com/abilowz or follow me on twitter http://twitter.com/annbilowz (where there are even more shared tidbits) or subscribe on the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. Either way, we hope you follow the postings somewhere in cyberspace and share it with your gardening friends. Questions, comments or thoughts, contact me direct at annbilowz@gmail.com Happy Gardening. Annie

About Me

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Check in for your daily share's worth of garden inspiration, landscape architecture and design tips; always original, not cookie cutter and copied. Just like our design work, we strive for unique! We invite you to contact Bilowz Associates, Inc., or to browse our portfolios. Like our Facebook follow on Twitter or subscribe to the blog to receive posts daily via email or a feed. You can follow with visuals on Pinterest and find us on LinkedIn and Houzz, too.  You can also find us back on our Google+ Business Page. (Landscape architects/Landscape Design/serving Massachusetts and New England.) Visit our landscape architectural design firm's website where creating design with balance and harmony is our story. http://www.bilowzassociates.com/

© 2009

© 2009 Ann St. Jean-Bilowz/Bilowz Associates Inc. (including all photographs, unless otherwise noted in Annie's Gardening Corner are the property of Bilowz Associates Inc. and shall not be reproduced in any manner nor are they to be assigned to any third party without the expressed written permission and consent of Bilowz Associates Inc.)