Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A Potting Shed for Rattlebridge


When we began renovating Rattlebridge Farm, a potting shed was the last thing on my mind.
It didn't even make the Top 500 in my To-Do list.
Then we built a small vegetable garden (a potager-to-be) and refurbished another space,
all the while caring for weed-loving herb and perennial gardens.

It wasn't long before we'd filled one end of the garage with tools, fertilizer, weed
emergent, and even a few bottles of lethal and icky Round-Up.
Two city slickers, eaten alive with ticks and chiggers, yet knee deep in chemicals.
A view of our "potager" from afar, with its itty boxwood border:
We could see a Godzilla-sized mess forming, so we met with a local landscape architect. Jason
was a Master Gardener at Cheekwood Gardens before starting his business, and he
suggested a few ideas, which I instantly embraced.
He envisioned limestone steps leading to the potager.
And a potting shed, Williamsburg style, tucked to one side of the magnolia (hill) garden.

Here's a picture of the potager (foreground) and the freshly weeded hill garden (magnolia).
 There are two possible places for the shed.

The refurbished, weeded hill (or magnolia) garden lies beyond the potager.

Jason thought a gate would look lovely, too.
And a focal point.
I always, always, forget about that.

 He described a curved path that would lead to the potting shed.

I don't know.
This might be a place where I would spend lots and lots of time.

 I have a lovely potting table in the basement, a bit similar to this one:

Tonight, as rain glazes the windows and a coolness spills
through the mountains, I think of my gardens. I won't need
to water them until tomorrow. Until then, I can take a breath and dream.


Pin It

Social Bookmarking


  1. This whole post just makes me say AHHHHHHHHHHHH. I would love a potting shed but it is not allowed:(:( Oh the things I could do, and play and dream. Can't wait to see yours and live vicariously through you. XO

  2. Whichever decisions you make - they are all lovely so obviously this is going to be terrific!

  3. oh this is my swan song... i so love formal gardens, boxwood, sheds and greenhouses, all things english, tools, baskets, warm sweet earth, flowers scenting the air... this is going to be fabulous! the joys of level land are ENDLESS! one thing to encourage your balance, many gardens i have toured have sheds/gh's in 2-4 corners, hows that for double your pleasure :-) i have never forgotten filoli's garden where far away from the house they built a conservatory for the wife to play bridge with her friends in the garden, i have always coveted that space, so simple but elegant. i have been designing my beach greenhouse potting shed too, but right now i am getting new laundry room so i am sure it will be far off in the distance before a reality... i will play vicariously through you for now!

  4. My heart is bursting right now as I look at how you envision your garden shed. The pictures are terrific, you will enjoy the space so much. Maybe it can be your potting/writing shed. May I recommend a wonderful book for herb gardening called "The Pleasure of Herbs". There are tons of them on Anazon and I think you will love it. It is an older book but the best one I have seen, ever!! If I could only own one herb gardening book this would be it.

    Blessings to you and Rattlebridge Farm. Can't wait to see the house and gardens once you are finished with all your projects. It is going to be breathtaking.

  5. Writing and gardening have much in common, so a potting shed would be a great place to gather thoughts. Thank you for the book recommendation--I'll order it today!

  6. I'm eager to hear about your new space, Jain.

  7. Oh, how special to get to have a potting shed. That is a dream for me. I have absolutely no place in my garden for one. I make do with a potting bench in the garage, but it's not too interesting. Mary has set the standard for a potting shed, and I yearn for one much like it. You are going to have a fun time designing and creating a fun place. If I had one, I'd want it to be a space where I could actually relax and spend time. Happy Planning......Sarah

  8. Ah, dream on sista!

    I think this is exactly what Rattlebridge Farm needs! Yay! Brilliant!


  9. Absolutely fabulous inspiration! I'm dreaming of building a very small potting shed next spring!!!! You really have a fabulous property!

  10. I can't wait to see what you ultimately come up with, it is ironic how we start down a path that leads to a unexpected destination~

  11. Oh you have a wonderful space for a shed! The planning stages are so exciting and fun and your inspiration photos, so much to choose from! Make your shed a little bit bigger than you think you need if you can afford to :) I love that you're repurposing and giving new life to your door and window!

  12. Oh my, aren't these lovely to look at & dream about, ML! At the corner of your potager garden are the perfect spot for it, too. (mine consists of 3 or 4 urns on the back deck~LOL)

    I can't wait to see what you will create & how SMART to use the door & window from your renovations.

  13. Whatever you decide to do, I know it will be fabulous!

  14. Michael Lee,
    This is my first visit to your blog, and I cannot begin to tell you how overjoyed I am to see all your fantastic posts. So far, I visited three posts, but keep eyeing the thumbnails as I roll past them. There will be many an hour spent looking at your older posts.

    I am you latest GFC and bloglovin' follower.