One of my favorite things to do in the off season on Martha’s Vineyard is get together with friends for a small intimate dinner and reconnect after the busy summer season. My husband, Jonathan, and I had the opportunity to do this last week and had a lovely meal at L’Etoile in Edgartown. It was the perfect venue to meet up with our friend Lil and have a quiet meal at a small table in the bar area. The menu had lots of choices that accommodated all of our tastes from Octopus to Duck to Halibut to a terrific Bailey’s Crème Brule. I can see why this is a popular spot for our summer vacation visitors and highly recommend you give it a try. It can be on the pricey side but you can count on Michael, the chef, coming through with a terrific meal. Also, a great wine list that gave the perfect finishing touch to a great evening out with great friends.
Recently I have noticed more and more signs of spring popping up all around the island. The trees are starting to show new growth, the Crocuses and Snowdrops are starting to pop up everywhere, Cardinals and Blue Jays are making appearances and, as hard as it is to believe, The weather seems to be going up in temperature just a scosh. All these signs have me itching to get outside and work in the Garden. The island is home to many amazing gardens, and soon enough just walking through the streets of Edgartown will make you feel as if like walking through an Arboretum or Botanical Garden.
Here are some great tips for getting your garden ready this spring:
- Did you know that Corn Gluten is a natural preemptive weed control? Simply sprinkle it around your garden and you won’t see any crabgrass or other pesky weeds popping up. The general timing of this is to apply it just as the forsythia plants start to bloom.
- Be sure to prune back the following plants to achieve maximum effect come spring:
- Hydrangeas should be pruned back to the lowest pair of strong buds on last season’s growth
- Rosa Rugosa should be pruned back roughly 12 inches
- Any Shrub Roses you may have
- Now is the time to start adding organic material, such as coffee beans or manure to your garden bed. Make sure you wait until the soil and organic material dries out before you start to dig. Working in the wet soil causes compaction and compound destruction.
- Once soil reaches 41 degrees on a regular basis you can start to transfer any seedling vegetables you may have planted indoors before the final frost happens.
- Hardier vegetables such as carrots and lettuce tend to grow better in the cooler weather, but make sure to have some form of cover handy to keep the plants safe from any overnight frost that may occur.
- Lastly, take time to shear back any groundcover, such as ivy. They can quickly overtake any garden if not kept in check.
A popular trend here on Martha’s Vineyard is to have a comfortable, yet functional outdoor living space. There’s nothing better than having family and friends together for food and quality time from spring all the way into fall. Here are some astonishingly easy ideas to bring new life into your outdoor living space.
1) Mason Jar Votives
This simple update will bring a serene feeling to your outdoor space. All you need is 3 Mason Jars, thick twine, sand from the beach, and your favorite votive candles.
1)Fill the mason jars with sand at varying levels. this will give the candles different heights.
2) Next wrap the top of the mason jar twice with the twine, tying it off in a simple bow.
3) Finally place the votice candles in the sand and arrange them to your liking on your outdoor table.
2) Hide Your Boring Foundation
Tired of looking at that brick or concrete slab at the base of your house? Head to your favorite home improvement store and pick up your favorite faux stone siding, and install it along your foundation. This subtle change will make a huge difference.
3) Easily Made Fancy Dog Bowls
Style doesn’t just have to be for humans. Head to the Home Goods and pick up some inexpensive planters, and some dog bowls. Once home, place the in a spot next to either a garden or a statue, just make sure they blend in within your design motif. Once the planters are situated place the dog bowls within the planters. This way fido has a source of water that is discrete and decorative.
4) Make Your Own Cordless Outdoor Chandelier
There’s something fun and romantic about having a chandelier outside. This Chandelier is perfect for hanging over a table outside. You don’t even need a power cord.
Find an old chandelier you’re fond of at a thrift or antique store, take out the bulbs, and replace them with outdoor solar lights, then hang it from your favorite spot or tree, and enjoy!
These quick subtle changes will make a world of difference to your outdoor space. Adding lighting that will illuminate the outdoor living space during the evening will extend the use of your outdoor space well past sunset. And hiding the foundation will create a more appealing look to your outdoor space, as well as improve the resale value should you ever choose to sell. For a property enrichment evaluation, please feel free to contact us. Sandpiper would love to help take your home to the next level in vacation rentals.