Saucer Sled Fairy Garden - Trying Moss

katydidit33(6a)November 8, 2013

I thought I'd offer this idea to others out there who might have or find an old saucer sled.

The first picture (spring, 2012) shows the sled on the base of a papasan chair tucked into a northern corner of the deck. One original handle of the sled shows - since removed. The base of the sled has five or six drilled drainage holes and a planter saucer sits beneath it on the table.

I offer the second picture taken to show it with its characters/items. Note that drainage would not tolerate a regular table as shown. Too many a time I had to siphon out the saucer under the papasan base - not workable.

The third picture (fall, 2013) shows my final determination - I needed an open weave table for total drainage.

There is actually a hill in the garden's terrain. I covered it with sheet moss from the north side of our house. The hill itself is high enough to contain a small potted cactus (behind the white fairy). I bought plugs of several types and most of them lasted throughout the summer. But the shallow edges were a failure and some of my best plants, a baby pine tree, clover, and (trimmed) weeds, arose naturally. Irish moss and Blue Star Creeper were the best of the buys.

Since I wanted something a bit more permanent that might survive the winter (garage or outside), I decided this spring that I would try moss. Just moss - no characters or items until I knew I could maintain their neighborhood. So I bought mosses online and set it at the north-west corner of the house where it got only late afternoon sunshine. Even that seems a bit too much dry-out for the sled edges but if I move it back any farther north (where our mossy lane is) it disappears around the corner. If nothing else, I have to remember to mist it more often.

I'm in Connecticut and winter is fast approaching. I asked for help and suggestions for winterizing in another thread.
The consensus seemed to be to try leaving it outside. So here goes the final stage of the experiment. The fourth picture shows where I'm going to put it - back in that northern corner, fairly well protected. After taking the pix I lowered the sled, setting it on a milk carton for that all-important drainage.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed, hoping this inspires/helps someone else out there, and wishing I lived just a tad farther south ... ... And I'm so open to any suggestions for winter or whatever might grow in very shallow dirt, ideally trailing over the edges. Any ideas?
Anyone want to wager on chances for survival over the winter?

Oh yes, one more thing - this garden frog was such a treat I had to take a picture when I saw it - and now have to share. Just luv it!

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That is a really great fairy garden!
Love it!
I would like to have a moss garden-they
look so wonderful-but here in NW Floriday
it is too hot had dry sor much moss. Even
when we have a summer with LOTS fo rain
I have trouble keeping my ressurection
fern on the tree limbs green.
The frog is awesome--thanks for showing us .

    Bookmark   November 9, 2013 at 8:33AM
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I turned a small bog garden into a fairy garden this year. There are bog plants around the edges and a big patch of moss in the center-it looks like a grassy lawn. The moss was growing in the gutters so I figured that if it could grow there it would do okay in the bog. It started out as patches but it didn't take long for all the patches to grow together. I have a child's plastic doll house on a big flat rock for their home, and it is surrounded with all the rocks I bring back from out travels. I can't wait to see how it looks after winter. I know the bog plants will do fine but hope the moss is happy too. It was a very unusually wet summer here-perfect for moss.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2013 at 5:20PM
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Marlene Kindred

Love your fairy garden Katy! The mosses look great in there too. I hope they will survive the winter....I'm guessing they will.

And the FROG...OMGosh....I LOVE him!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 7:41PM
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As a former resident of CT, I'm going to guess that the frog lives in Willimantic, a/k/a Thread City. He's just great ! So colorful !

    Bookmark   November 16, 2013 at 12:42PM
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I always wondered about the inspiration for the spool. I'd wager you're right.

When I took the picture this property was off Pearl Street in Mystic, CT. Lovely people there - I didn't think to ask its origin.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2013 at 9:03PM
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Really nice.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 9:08PM
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Your saucers reminded me of my second attempt. I got my houses from the thrift store for about a buck each.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 6:54PM
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garden2garden(z8 FL)

Hi Katydidit, with all this cold weather I was wondering if when the time came you were brave enough to leave your beautiful moss garden outside? It looks really great with all the details you put in.
Love the frog.
arcy, that's so cute with the stone paths leading to the houses. I see you are in a cold zone, too, do you leave yours out for the winter?

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 10:34AM
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Oh, yes, the saucer is out there in the corner, under snow. Will update on that in the spirng, promise.

Great little houses. Don't you just love a bargain!
Ditto on that question - are you dealing with freeze? Why was this one your second attempt?

    Bookmark   December 14, 2013 at 3:33PM
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concretenprimroses(4B NH)

I love them all. Those path lights made out of golf tees and marbles are adorable. I've got an old saucer....!
Can't wait for spring.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 8:14AM
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Hi all!

Happy first day of Spring - especially for we northerners!!! Record snowfalls, record days below zero, that's what we had here in CT. I'm anxious about my saucer garden, but still optimistic. I took the last pix yesterday - the last day of winter. I can't yet get any closer than that pix shows but from what I can see, it's only the Blue Star Creeper that looks iffy to me. The three pix below are from Jan 21, Feb 14, and Mar 19, 2014. I still have a frozen stream along the path.

In anticipation of success for this saucer experiment, let me add a few notes and tips that I forgot to include above.

On my second try I used a lot of local dirt over the base of potting soil. Seems happier - potting soil not earthy enough?

This sled is made of aluminum. I don't know about plastic - might its chemicals leach into the dirt over time? Maybe a year or two would be okay? I don't know - anybody else?

Since last summer I water (drizzle) with rain water only, and only when needed, concentrating on the drier perimeter, letting it soak to the center.

All that said, I'll probably finish this thread with one more pix in early summer - with critters. As for the rest of my time in here - I'm still learning from everyone else - with very little expertise.

Onward and upward for us all - flowers included!

-- K

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 4:09PM
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One more thing - a little irony I thought I'd pass along. This pix is from a catalog ad. I already have (and showed) every item in these two offerings. So I just sorta wonder if someone in that company cruises the garden forums!

I left a number for the adventurous - I'm not selling anything [big grin, no winks] but that fencing is great and I don't see it too often.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 4:14PM
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Adorable! Thx for all the pics!! Eye Candy! I just bought some BIG pots as they dry out so fast....but always have to have a mini can't call urself a junker without one!!!ha! ;-)

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 12:29PM
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