Orphaned Garden Tuteurs & other Nonsense


ABOVE:  Open area where I want to place a large arbor like this one.

It’s Tuesday, but feels like a Sunday. I’m not sure why.

When I looked at the weather forecast last night, I noted we were slated for rain at 8 am this morning.  We’ve had rain on and off for the last three days. As often as not, the forecasters are wrong, but I posted a sticky note in my brain because my dogs don’t like rain. I determined I would get them outside to do their business before 8 o’clock.

The dog pack (3, including Elly-Belly-Munchy-Mouth) and I were outside by 7:50 am.  The dogs were sniffing while I casually looked at plants with winter burn that need pruning and tall grass that could use a shave, and then without warning the sky’s water hose turned on full-blast. We all ran inside.  Almost as soon as the dogs and I came in, the rain stopped, the sun emerged, and the birds renewed their song.  Lovely, I thought, this rain is temporary, and I will go out and prune today. But no, that isn’t in my personal forecast.

Somebody (God, karma, nature) knows that if the weather is nice, I will be outside.  I will turn a blind-eye to the dust and dog hair inside the house and go into the garden where I live most of the time. (Currently, two dog hair dust-bunnies sit like garden focal points to either side of my hallway.)

I do think gardening is a drug. I admit I’m an addict.

Anyway, important house duties such as re-stocking my finished bathroom can wait, right?   (Will post on the *new* bathroom soon.)

I ventured outside again about 20 minutes later and nature, like a stern parent, reprimanded me, “What did I tell you?  Get inside the house right this minute and do your chores!” For a second time it poured no sooner than my foot hit the deck outside the back door.  So here I am blogging.  Ha!  I’m still a kid at heart and know how to procrastinate like any good child.

Now to the heart of this post:

While walking the dogs yesterday, I ran across a metal shelving unit someone threw out.  As soon as I saw it, I thought it resembled a rose tuteur.  (Don’t get me started on the difference between a tuteur, obelisk, and a garden tower.)


ABOVE:  Shelving unit needs a good fairy godmother to transform it.

Do you see the similarity to a tuteur in this shelving unit or is it just me?  The tuteur stands a bit over 6 ft tall. When I lifted the tuteur (we’ll call it a tuteur, even if that’s not what you see in it), I noticed it was quite heavy.  Apparently, the glass shelves inside the unit had broken, and this was the reason it was hauled to the street.

Do I need a tuteur-obelisk-garden tower?  Well, uh, no.  Was I going to pick it up?  You bet.

I cut the walk short and hurried home.

When I saw my neighbor in his truck across the street, I inquired if he might help pick the sucker up.  He agreed and said he’d seen the piece himself and intended to go back to get it but forgot.  In his eyes, even though he gardens, it was still a shelving unit. He mentioned he could make new shelves from wood to replace the glass.  I offered the unit to him right then since he’d seen it first, but he declined.


Now it’s in my backyard.  It needs to be painted (black) to keep it from rusting and to minimize its former shelf identity.  It needs a place to live.  It needs a vine.

I’ve looked around to see where it might best fit.  Maybe in place of the green pot you see below?  I’ll need to move that pot about 12 feet over if that’s the case.


Note – There is a potted trailing verbena that fits inside the brown chimney pot you see at right. I’ve not put it back yet after over-wintering it in another part of the yard.

I have a vine; one that I’ve been saving to put on a big-butt arbor. (You won’t find the term “big-butt arbor” in any online sales descriptions for arbors, by the way.)  I shouldn’t buy a big-butt arbor right now because my money needs to pay taxes and hospitals.  I need to wait.  Maybe I’ll buy one after doing a few pet-sitting jobs….As the trite saying goes, gardens aren’t built in a day.

So perhaps my confederate jasmine vine can grow up this tuteur instead of a fancy arbor and then onto the wood fence.  What do you think?


ABOVE:   Confederate jasmine Trachelospermum jasminoides purchased half price at end of last year and overwintered in a pot.

Who was that American TV landscape painter who always talked about “happy little accidents”?  Oh ya, it was Bob Ross.  Well,  I guess you could say this shelving unit was a happy accident.

So I’m curious (this is a gardener’s Rorschach Test), do you see a tuteur-obelisk-garden tower or a shelving unit?  Only checking to see if I’m crazy!