Fabric Bombing! And Garden Progress

I have a vague desire to win the Yard of the Month contest here in our neighborhood. (Pay no attention to the husband; he *claims* that it’s “all I talk about” but he’s full of it.) The contest doesn’t go on nominations – the community employees drive around and take notes and decide that way. Our building is structured kinda like a U, facing the street, with our “yard” and some stairs to the second floor in the middle. As such, it’s hard to see my lovely little garden from the street (especially since a neighbor is often parked on the street in front of the building).
We were sitting outside enjoying the air the other night when I had a brainwave. If I decorate the tree in front of the building, it’ll be easier for them to notice my yard! I didn’t want to do just a plain bow – they get floppy in the rain. I went inside and hunted around a bit and finally came up with a half-yard or so of striped “patriotic” fabric (quite fitting since it was Memorial Day weekend and we live on a military post).

I packed my pockets with a long needle, a spool of thread (I chose white at random, and there was a bit of brown already on the needle), a pair of scissors, and some sturdy pushpins, and went back outside.

I cut the fabric into three approximately-equal widths, wrapped them around the tree, and pinned them in place carefully.

Sewing it on was a bit of a workout, but not too bad. (Please ignore the over-processed photo, ugh – Jonathan changed the settings and this photo turned out strange.) (But feel free to check out my kickass TARDIS shirt.)

Here’s a slightly-better photo of the bands being sewn. I did large basting stitches, making sure to double back so it’s secure. I chose an especially long needle so I could put it through the fabric and come back out, since I can’t flip the cloth, obviously.

And here’s what it looks like, all sewn. I put the seam on the back, and I was quite careful not to stab the tree. I only pushed the pins in a little tiny bit.

This is a view of the tree from the sidewalk. I’m off to the side a bit because the truck is parked in front as usual. (And there’s my husband with his sexy post-surgery sling.) I like the look of the bands a lot. It reminds me of the “yarn bombed” trees that knitters have been creating. I guess this is a fabric bombed tree?

While we’re out in the garden, would you like to meet my pet ‘mingo? I got him 2 summers ago and he’s spent some time in the sun. I prefer to think that he just needs to eat more shrimp.

My daughter also provides much-needed decor to my yard. Most of these pictures are “Ponies,” but there are other things too.

For good measure, here’s a photo of my garden again. I did rearrange it, as I expected. (And it’ll need it again soon, when those peppers need to size up to bigger pots.) I took these photos five days ago, and as I was selecting for this post, I was amazed at how much my plants have already grown! My cucumbers, in particular, are growing like weeds! I’ve also got sprouts in my lettuce barrel!

I’ve been watering them liberally (they get a lot of direct morning sunlight and are always dry by afternoon), and every other day or so I give them all a good bath with some coffee-infused water. I save the grounds from my coffee maker and let them dry (I’m saving the filters for a project as well). I filled up a storage tub with water and tossed the grounds in and let it steep. I was unsure if it’d do any good but it seems to have! It has the added benefit of letting all the chlorine and whatnot in the water dissipate as it sits out in the tub.

Do you have Yard of the Month aspirations? Have you ever yarn-bombed? Do you keep your coffee grounds? And what do you think of my ‘mingo?