Bloom Thyme Friday: My Favorite Garden Center

I was recently asked by Garden Chat to write a guest post about my favorite Independent Garden Center. I am pleased to tell you about COUNTRY HARMONY in Brownsburg, IN.

The atmosphere is quaint but also upscale and urban! The location is peacefully tucked away in a corner of natural foliage in the heart of our little town. Very “oasis” like!

They are open year-round, so no matter the season, you can choose from a comprehensive line of home decor, gourmet gifts, garden accessories and plants.

During the growing season you simply must come! Their abilities as garden designers and their vast selection of highest quality plants put them way ahead of any other garden center I’ve visited (and that list is long!).

Another area that sets them apart, is the expert care they give to their plants. Whether it is early in the season or at the end of a very long, hot summer, everything looks amazing. Every plant is hand watered on a plant-by-plant basis. Owner Ryan, Designer Brad and the entire staff are very good at what they do! They are knowledgeable and friendly and are willing to literally walk along side you down the rows and rows of beautiful plants to find the perfect ones for your garden or home.

A few years ago my garden went through a major renovation and one of the first things I did was to contact Country Harmony to bounce around ideas and seek their expertise.

I can say all of this because I am somewhat of a Country Harmony expert … IF frequent visits count as expertise! I am there every week during the growing season … sometimes multiple times a week. If only just to be among the beautiful plants. 🙂 My husband likens my trips to Country Harmony as putting another child through college… Oh it’s not that much, but he’s probably thinking of my garden projects over the last 25+ years. 🙂

Reminds me of a quote by Mrs. Emily Whaley in her book Mrs. Whaley and Her Charleston Garden

Gardening is not inexpensive. … One successful way to finance your gardening, is to choose carefully whom you marry. A good and generous man is needed. … If you are so lucky to find such a man, you must fully realize and fully appreciate the fact that you have found a “pearl of great price.”

I do and I sure appreciate him. There is no doubt the folks at Country Harmony do too!

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Bloom Thyme: Something Grande

Last Sunday, on one of the hottest days of the year, I decided I needed just one more rose to add to our collection this year. Not to be confused with the long list that I already have for roses I want to add NEXT year.

So, hubby and I (He gets extra points for this!) headed out to see what was left at a local garden center (Dammanns).

The roses were definitely “picked over,” but I found one … a beautiful one … a GRANDE one … Grande Dame. I am so excited to have this new addition to my garden and can’t wait to see some beautiful blooms.

Here’s what Weeks Roses has to say about this 2011 release…

Grande Dame
Everything old is new again … or is it the other way around? Here’s a clean mean flowering machine whose big bountiful beauties reek with old rose romance, style & fragrance. Each lovely blossom invites you to bury your nose…to swoon from the perfume of the ‘old time’ roses of your dreams. A big vigorous ‘shrubby’ bush whose nodding clusters, abundant deep-green leaves & low-thorned cutting stems provide a perfect touch to a landscape or bouquet.

  • Height / Habit: Tall/Upright & bushy
  • Bloom / Size: Full, old-fashioned, in nodding clusters
  • Petal count: Over 30 broad petals
  • Parentage:Meredith x Wild Blue Yonder
  • Fragrance: Intense old rose
  • Hybridizer: Carruth – 2011
  • Comments: A modern antique for all climates.
Grande Dame

Mixing old and new is what my garden is all about!


An Update on The Dame

If you remember, she looked pitiful when I bought her and she was planted in the worst possible conditions … hot hot hot and dry dry dry. Having so many days that exceeded 90 were beginning to get to her … and to me. We gave her lots of lovin’ care and extra Moo Poo tea.

I had decided that I probably wouldn’t see bloom until next year. But, today The Dame presented me with a surprise–her first, very fragrant bloom. Now that things have cooled down a bit, she is showing her stuff…

Almost picture perfect.

I guess that is just like life. Sometimes our surroundings are not ideal, but it is best to bloom where we are planted and be thankful along the way especially for unexpected surprises!

Are you getting any late season surprises?