During the last growing season I was recruited to help a neighbor in her garden. She'd seen what I had been doing with the front yard and she must have figured it was an opportunity to get her hands on some free help.
One day she called me over after having been on a shopping spree of tender bulbs and corms. She wanted to get started right away and plant her a garden. I tried to get her to slow down and sit down with me so we can draw up some kind of plan instead of just planting things here and there, the way I do.
Her front yard can easily accommodate the house I live in and have a little room left over. I've always envied it because it's a great size and a perfect rectangle. It could be a great garden one day with enough space for several garden rooms or small themed gardens. But as she always reminds me; "she's not getting any younger" and the lady next door "always has something blooming in her garden."
It took a few minutes but eventually I got her to realize that the lady next door always has something blooming because most of her flowers are fake. Yes, this other neighbor of ours plants silk and plastic flowers! When everything is blooming in her garden you can't really tell that a lot of it is faker than three dollar bill but in the middle of winter in Chicago it's kind of obvious.
Not only does this other neighbor love fake plants in her garden put she has menagerie of various molded plastic containers; geese, ducks, hens, lambs...you get the idea. I'll have to take photos of gardens around me that employ fake flowers in the spring- there are a lot.