With autumn winding down and winter rapidly approaching, I have been busy â€śbattening down the hatchesâ€ť on my farm and preparing for the cold and snowy weather to come. In fact, as Iâ€™m writing this, itâ€™s snowing outside, and thereâ€™s an inch or two of snow already on the ground.
One of my last projects for the season was planting a couple rows of flower bulbs in a new garden bed. The planting went very wellâ€”fortunately, the ground hadnâ€™t frozen yet. Yet because the new bed borders a lawn, I worried that its exact location would blur next spring when the grass starts growing and itâ€™s time to mow. After all, I wouldnâ€™t want to inadvertently mow down the flowers. (And that’s never happened before, right?)
Rather than assume that I can identify the boundaries of the flower bed next spring, I decided that a visual marker would help me see it. Preferably, the marker would be something attractive and interesting to look at, rather than a couple of stakes or flags.
Fortunately, I had just the thingâ€”old bricks!
As I described in an article earlier this year, I had the good fortune to stumble across a sizable pile of very old bricks half-buried in leaves and pine needles beneath a tree on my farm. Many of them are stamped with the names of their manufacturers, and after doing some research, I determined that the bricks are at least 70 years old. What could be better than using these old bricks for new projects? I had already used some to build a brick walkway at the entrance to a garden, and here the bricks would be perfect for building a simple barrier to mark the boundaries of the new flower bed.
While in the future I might essentially lay a miniature brick wall with mortar to hold the bricks together, for now I kept things simple and laid two layers of bricks in an interlocking pattern. Itâ€™s not all that sturdy, but thatâ€™s part of the charmâ€”itâ€™s uncomplicated, rustic and easy to modify in the future if I need more room for flowers.
With this project complete, I guess winter can come. Or, if it feels so inclined, it can hold off for a while longer, and Iâ€™ll be sure to take advantage!