Surviving Late Winter: Plan Your Summer Cocktail Garden

cocktails in the garden
The days of staying out a little bit longer and enjoying a cocktail in the yard are fast approaching. Start your cocktail herbs from seed now.

So a storm is fast approaching and I’m not too bothered.  Of course, I hope no one loses power this time.  Living in the city, we rarely lose power.  Snow is just a little inconvenience.  We are lucky enough to live somewhere where we can walk to the library, the corner store, the local bakery or gourmet cheese shop.  Snow is more of an adventure than a problem.  These late snow storms after some warm spring-like days can be a little disconcerting though.  The best way to get through them is to start planning your outdoor garden or as I like to call it your cocktail garden.  We have our seeds and pots ready to go and will probably start planting them as the snow begins to fall tomorrow.

My fantasy garden is a rooftop garden on our garage, but the quote we were given to do so was about $20,000 so that will just have to remain a fantasy.  In the meantime, our little old raised bed has served us well but is ready to be dismantled and rebuilt this time a little bit larger.  For my work with Wayfair, I was given a chance to put together my blogger’s picks for the garden.  Here is what I came up with.  Some of these things will make their way into my online order this week and others I already have ready to go.

My urban garden needs to have a little of everything.  If you plan it right, you can have fresh mint for your cocktails, fresh herbs for your salad dressing and marinades, and a few vegetables as well.  Here are my blogger picks for the perfect urban vegetable/herb/cocktail garden.

The Garden Itself

  1. The wall planter kit is perfect to have just outside the kitchen.  If you have a back stoop or a porch, then put a few of these on the wall for easy access herbs.  We have our garden outside, but then I like to have some herbs on the second floor porch which is near our kitchen.
  2. A raised bed can go in a back yard, or if your back yard is shaded like ours is, you can also put it right on a driveway or other outdoor space.  Your raised beds can be long and narrow if they need to go by the side of the house, or spacious like this one if you have a large enough yard or driveway spot.
  3. Every gardener needs their tools.  This basket looks cute and keeps all the tools together in one spot.  I love that it has a laminated lining that is easy to wipe clean.
  4. Space is limited in the city.  These vertical gardens can go right next to your raised bed, or you can put something like this on a patio or porch as well. Don’t limit yourself to herbs and vegetables, you can also plant flowers for bouquets.  I love fresh cut flowers.
  5. This little organizer is where you want to keep your extra seed packets, little herb scissors and extra bits of twine, twist ties, and all the other little things you like to have at hand for your garden.
  6. I love that a vertical planter can go on the wall or stand alone. If you don’t want to drill into your wall this is a great option for a kitchen garden just outside a door on a patio or porch.  It can also be used next to your raised bed.  If you get creative, climbing vines could also grow up one side of this planter.
  7. Using glass or ceramic bowls for planting smaller herbs and microgreens works well and looks cute too.  Microgreens grow quickly and don’t need a deep vessel.
  8. This xl basket is great for toting supplies around whether you keep a small watering can and larger pruning tools in here, an extra towel to keep your hands clean or roll up to put under your knees as you garden.
3-Piece Groves Metal Wall Planter Set
3-Piece Groves Metal Wall Planter Set
8 ft. x 8 ft. Western Red Cedar Raised Garden
8 ft. x 8 ft. Western Red Cedar Raised Garden
Countryside Garden Basket
Countryside Garden Basket
Cedar Vertical Garden
Cedar Vertical Garden
10-Section Galvanized Organizer
10-Section Galvanized Organizer
Houghton Wood Wall Planter
Houghton Wood Wall Planter
Rectangle Floor Glass Pot Planter
Rectangle Floor Glass Pot Planter
XL French Market Basket
XL French Market Basket
Raise a Glass Here’s to You 2 Piece 12 oz. Plastic/Acrylic Cocktail Glass Set
Raise a Glass Here’s to You 2 Piece 12 oz. Plastic/Acrylic Cocktail Glass Set
Jaelynn 11.5 ft. Cantilever Umbrella
Jaelynn 11.5 ft. Cantilever Umbrella
Epicurean Hardwood Cutting Board and Drain Board
Epicurean Hardwood Cutting Board and Drain Board
Arbor Court Diamond Rimmed Cocktail Shaker
Arbor Court Diamond Rimmed Cocktail Shaker
Barmop Warm Towel
Barmop Warm Towel
Barnwood Bar Serving Cart
Barnwood Bar Serving Cart
Bucksport Bar Serving Cart
Bucksport Bar Serving Cart
Maryville Pouf Ottoman
Maryville Pouf Ottoman
Oval Wire Basket with Wooden Handles
Oval Wire Basket with Wooden Handles
Print Dishcloth
Print Dishcloth
Piner Large Pasta Bowl
Piner Large Pasta Bowl
Shop Basket
Shop Basket
Print Dishcloth
Print Dishcloth
Herb Chop Block
Herb Chop Block
Wood and Metal 18 x 65 in. Decorative Ladder
Wood and Metal 18 x 65 in. Decorative Ladder
Heartland Bird Wall Mounted Holder
Heartland Bird Wall Mounted Holder

Cocktails in the garden

  1. Don’t be afraid if something is out of stock.  If you love it, you can wait for it.  These cocktail glasses are too cute.  They are also acrylic so you don’t have to worry about a spill if you doze off under the sun while holding your glass.
  2. A cantilever umbrella is great not only to keep yourself cool while gardening, but it is also useful for the garden itself.  Lettuces and some beans don’t like too much sun.  Rotate the umbrella to shade the vegetables during the hottest times of day.
  3. A cutting board with a drain is perfect for the outdoor cocktail garden.  You can rinse out your glasses with the garden house and let them dry on the drain board side.  Use the cutting board to trip flowers or chop up your fresh herbs
    Cocktails are best shaken, muddled or stirred with herbs fresh from the garden.  I love the retro look of this one.
  4. A barmop towel is useful for everything from drying a few herbs after washing them to wiping your hands after you wash them under the cool hose water.
  5. This is the perfect garden piece.  It works perfectly for a potting bench, but then you clean it up for a party and you have the perfect bar.  There are lots of hooks for your bar mop towels as well.
  6. I love this coffee table height bar cart is so cute and can work as a side table for an outdoor seating area any day of the week.  For a little cocktail party, stock it fully with some bottles, cocktail glasses and more.
  7. Everyone loves a poof.  This ottoman is made for the outdoors, it adds some softness and colour to an outdoor seating area.  I think a poof invites people to sit down, relax and stay a while. You can even have plop the poof right down in the middle of your cocktail garden and enjoy a nice cool highball as you inhale the scent of the garden.
gardening with a toddler
Starting the herbs from seed for the cocktail garden and vegetables too.

 Harvest & The Kitchen

  1. You can never have too many baskets especially when it comes time to harvest the fruits, vegetables and herbs of your labor. Even a stroll through the cocktail garden is relaxing wether you are harvesting or not.
  2. A garden themed dishcloth can be used as it was meant to be used in the kitchen, but you can also line your baskets with this towel to keep things from falling through the basket.
  3. I like to drill a small hole with a ceramic drill bit in large serving dishes to use to grow herbs and microgreens.  They make nice shallow planters that look good on a table inside or out.
  4. This larger basket is great for harvesting broccoli, squash, and eggplant.  You can also line it with a towel and fill it with tomatoes and more.
  5. A dishcloth is a great little table cloth for an outdoor side table.  These garden themed dishcloths are also great to put down in a bowl or basket to serve everything from bread and rolls to fresh fruit.
  6. There is nothing quite like the scent of finely chopped herbs.  I love this block with a double blade for chopping herbs that stores right inside the block.
  7. This ladder is perfect for tying herbs into little bouquets and hanging them upside down with twine to dry in the sun.  I like to dry my hot peppers and some herbs to use throughout the year.
  8. This wall mounted twine holder is perfect for tying up plants to stakes, tying together bouquets to dry, or just grabbing a length of string to play a round of cat’s cradle with the kids.

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