Home of the Practically Perfect Pink Phlox and other native plants for pollinators

Monday, September 14, 2009

Bluebird On The Mountain and Other Mish Mash Stories

It's been a full weekend here at Clay and Limestone. A fun activity or two that are perfect to share in a Mish Mash post on this fine Monday morning. Unlike our host, Monica, from Garden Faerie's Musings, we haven't left our hometown~~We've just been busier then usual.

We attended a “Bluebird On the Mountain” concert featuring Kim Karnes, Greg Barnhill and Tim Nichols. You've heard Kim's big hit (Youtube~~Bette Davis Eyes) in the 80's; but might not know she continues to write songs and tour. Her voice is distinctively rough. Greg and Tim are both well known songwriters...Jut google them to see what they've written and for whom!

Our gently rolling hills ring Nashville in the above photo shot from the 'patio' at Cheekwood Mansion winter 2008

The concert was held at Vanderbilt’s Dyer Observatory. The observatory is located on a lovely piece of land on top of the highest hill in Davidson County. (Nashville is located in the Central basin and is ringed by hills.) They've cleared the trees and understory; it's perfect for sky viewing from a telescope or a comfortable beach chair. The twilight sky was a wonderful mixture of blues and stars just beginning to reveal themselves. My camera and skill level couldn't begin to capture it; although the photo of the observatory with the signature bluebird isn't half bad.

There are plenty of opportunities to hear great songwriters in Nashville strut their stuff. They are after all, the folks who write the songs we love to listen to~~But, not many are in a wonderful setting like this one! Bluebird on The Mountain (here for info) concert series is co-sponsored by the Bluebird Cafe...(here) and Vanderbilt University. It's a sold out venue... for a steep price you can find individual tickets to most of the concerts. We bought what's called a carload ticket last spring. Which means, the eight of us squeeze into a small SUV with all our picnic gear and food to spend time laughing, eating, crowd watching and listening to music. The food was good, the company delightful and the music fantastic. Over all a fun evening. We brought the cheeses, fig spread and the best crackers I've tasted in a long time~~Leslie Stowe Rain crisps.

If you come to Nashville~~and really, you should~~ Forget the tours of Music Row and Lower Broad. Make reservations for the Bluebird Cafe and then, stop by to see me.

Rudbeckia nitida 'Herbstonne'

Last night we went to a food tasting at a friend's~~We sampled chicken, London Broil, pastas, quiches, vegetables and dip, cheeses, crackers and dessert. We even had score sheets. "Why?", you wonder. To help pick out foods for an upcoming wedding, of course!

I am going to have to fast this week!

~~and, since this is a gardening blog

I've decided to finish my project in the back garden. There's a fence back there that is going to be "oh so Tom Sawyer" fun to paint. I'll get the supplies...just stop by for a little fence painting next weekend! They'll be plenty of cool drinks and bug spray!

Ms.Piggy is sporting new Betsy Johnson sunglasses~~She's looking quite fetching.

I've finally placed my wildlife certification sign in the garden~~

I've had it since last spring~It's a perfect time ~The Susans are browning and I plan to leave the seed heads of it, coneflowers and other wildflowers to reseed and feed the birds.
The sign proclaims that this is not just a mess...It's a mess with a plan;)

I hope your weekend was filled with delicious experiences.


  1. What a great weekend! What a great concert! I am envious for your location --so close to Nashville and all that it offers. How cool. And the info at Vanderbilt...they have a great section of their website for plant material.

  2. A mess with a plan? Love it! So nice you had a great time at the concert. Nashville is such a cool city.

  3. "A mess with a plan." I'll have to remember that one! Looks like you've had a lot of fun things keeping you busy!

  4. What a great weekend!! Glad you put up your sign..and I may have to borrow your saying..

  5. Hi Gail, I wish I still lived in TN, it would be great to hang out with all you bloggers.

    I do remember Kim Kanres, didn't she do a song with Elton John?

    I think Huck Finn was a better salesman. Somehow I did not get the urge to grab a brush and paint your fence after hearing about the free bug spray;)

  6. Concert...my kinda fun...with food even better. We went to a Harry Connick picnic in the park once.

  7. Oh to be in Tn. Heaven on earth. Nashville is great but I'm parshall to a smaller town West of Nashville.
    Lots more to do in Nashville. More available as for health & other can't do without things.
    Gail, do you have a Shag Bark Hickory in your garden?

  8. Oh man, that sounds like so much fun, Gail! We have been to the Bluebird cafe and had the best time and heard the best music my ears have ever experienced, ever! I wish we could have joined you, but the car would be too full. The gas guzzler would have been perfect! Now, what color are you painting that fence? And kudos to Miss Piggy for her choice of designer shades. BJ is a hoot!:-)

  9. What a great opportunity to visit the Dyer Observatory, I've always wanted to go there. We used to live on 12South, which is Granny White, so I've passed by it many times, what a gorgeous affluent area.

  10. "Not just a mess; a mess with a plan" may become my new mantra.

  11. It was a fun weekend~~not much gardening was achieved, just planning.

    Frances~~The fence will actually be stained the same dark color of the bird house posts. We could have squeezed you in!

    Lyzjo, Gorgeous and affluent is the perfect description of the area! You wouldn't believe the Starter Castles that have replaced the McMansions!

    Helen, It's a motto that fits my garden...you may use it, too.

    Lola, Yes, I do have Shag Bark Hickories~~The squirrels drop them on me as I garden.

    Donna, There is a Jazz On The Mountain show in October!



  12. Janet, Glad you like their website! Vanderbilt's campus is a tree arboretum! Beautiful stately trees almost all are id-ed!


  13. that concert looks like fun and the food super great. i do remember kim karnes from the 80's. loved her rough~hewned voice. i had no idea she was still doing music. sounds like a perfectly delightful evening.
    have fun painting the fence. it should look great in the garden when you are finished.
    have a great week in september.

  14. You know I've lived here my entire life and I didn't know we had an observatory!
    I've also been planning to get one
    of those Wildlife habitat signs
    for the dry creek bed that runs through my back yard, I have always left the grass 7 feet high and have been trying to let the native trees grow up ,It's the talk of the neighborhood in the cul-de-sac to that abuts the back lot, or so I've been told.
    I actually weedeated the brush once and found 2 bunnies and a box turtle with a bunch of mower scars munching the indian strawberries in the thick grass, i felt horrible, That's the first and last time ever for that.

  15. Oh my, Gail, it sounds like you've had a wonderful weekend! Isn't the Bluebird Cafe famous for showcasing lots of upcoming Nashville talent? I do remember Kim Karnes--I love those gravelly-voiced singers.

    Congratulations on being certified as a Wildlife Habitat garden! I could use one of those signs, too, so that passersby know the dried up coneflowers are there for a reason:)

    Gotta go--for some reason, I am incredibly hungry:)

  16. Concert sounds really nice. Your morning glories are so beautiful. Nice labeling on the photos.

  17. Oh, and, congratulations are your wildlife certification.

  18. I like your suggested Nashville itinerary. :)

  19. Have fun painting the fence Gail. I will look forward to seeing the results! Any color in particular?? I wish I could take you up on your offer of stopping by after a visit to the Bluebird cafe. Both sound like a fantastic time to me.

    Oh, congrats on getting your wildlife habitat signage up. I still want to apply for that ~ so many things to do....

  20. Can you tell me the name of that fabulous striped blue morning glory. I love the photo and I hope to grow some of those next spring. Your blof proves Tennessee is beautiful in all seasons.

  21. Woot, Certified Wildlife Habitat sign! I proudly display one in my front bed -- one of these days I might get the Pesticide Free Zone sign with the ladybug on it to put in a different spot. That might be enough for signage, haha. But anything I can do to nudge my neighbors to follow suit, excellent.

  22. When I was in my 20s in the late 70s, I worked at a vegetarian restaurant with a gal named Laurie McClaine. She was a musician then, and still is. She moved to Nashville a long time ago. Have you heard of her? She comes back to Lincoln from time to time. I'm not a huge fan of the type of music she plays, but did enjoy the evening we went to hear her play awhile back.

    I love that morning glory. Is it heavenly blue? I think that's the kind of seeds I bought but didn't get planted. I'll have to try next year.

    It sounds like you had a fun weekend.

  23. It is a wonder that you even have time to blog. What fun you've been having!!! If I lived closer I would come paint the fence with you. Cheers.


"Insects are the little things that run the world." Dr. E O Wilson