Statuary In and Around our Backyard

 

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Our Outdoor Fountain

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It sits right outside our “nook”.

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It’s Beautiful to Look At

It Makes Me Happy

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Statuary to me is beautiful.

  Statuary can be something big and grand, or something small and special. 

Statuary is usually white and bright and accents an area of a backyard or a grand estate.

Statuary to me is something historic, almost royal.  It conjurs up gardens featured in great novels of nobelmen and women. 

Even romance, as a couple strolls a garden during a courtship, flirtatiously getting to know one another. 

I love statuary and I try and have as much of it as possible in my own backyard and a little in the front yard.  But mainly outback, as this beauty is solely for us to enjoy.

I’ve posted here some of our statuary and I hope that you will enjoy walking our backyard with me as I guide you.

Our statuary helps us to create our own grand estate on our small property here in Florida.

I hope you will enjoy.

Julie Lancaster-Whann

Same Area One Year Later

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Just Lovely

 

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Our Logo From our Old Website

I still love this photo.

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Me, sitting at my most favorite spot in my backyard.

 Statuary is just so bright and white and permanent.  It just looks like something that you would find in a museum.  I love collecting it.  Here are a few examples of what we have collected so far and how much we enjoy it and incorporating it into our outdoor lives.

Julie Lancaster-Whann

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Our Back Yard Oasis

The Back Yard Should ALWAYS Be Your Oasis

We have a fenced in backyard where we like our privacy and enjoy the nice mild climate of Florida, although our summers can be brutal. Gordon and I have built all of this up ourselves.  We were given a clean slate to work with when we first bought our home.

Back Yard Fountain

One thing I wanted when we bought our home was a fountain.  A beautiful white fountain that I could look out my window and enjoy all year long.  And weather permitting, being able to sit outside to enjoy not only seeing it, but hearing the water trickle.

Barefoot In The Backyard

Beautiful Ap’es, Pretty Hydrangeas…..

Gordon built this retaining wall and added a lovely flower box underneath the window.  I added the pretty birdhouse so that I could give a bird family a home.

Gordon also built this path around yet another retaining wall that we added as a centerpiece to our backyard as we walk out the back door.

I Love Placing Flowers Into The Fountain

I also love statuary accents all over our property.

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I do love all my Asian touches here and there.

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My Foo Dog Stand Guard

My Pope John Paul Roses

Statuary Accents

I like things peeking out.

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My Rosa-Senesis

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A beautiful Geisha girl adds such charm to our garden.

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Buddah gets a Goblet

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Veronica putting rose petals in the fountain.

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that we converted into a water barrel.  It catches the rain water, holds up to 67 gallons and sits atop yet another statuary find, a pedestal.  It is actually the bottom of a fountain.  We wanted something very sturdy in order to hold all the weight of the barrel and the water.  It also helps us to save money on our water bill by collecting rain water to use to water our plants.

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I bought this statuary mushroom in honor of Sugar.  Sugar can sniff out mushrooms better than any truffle sniffing pig.  It’s Sugar’s cement mushroom.  Representing her talent.  Sometimes I think we have pigs instead of pugs.

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Julie’s Herbs

We have several statuary pieces throughout, especially in our herb garden.  I prefer growing our herbs in pots as opposed to planting directly into the ground.  I believe things grow better in pots.  At least in our backyard, that is.

Smelling these delicious herbs from my garden.

Gathering Herbs for meals as well as Cocktails

Chives and Italian Parsley

Lemon Thyme

Italian Oregano and well as regular Oregano

Basil Leaves

Purple Basil

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In the Garden Picking Herbs for a Delicious Italian Dinner

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Mint Mojitos

Gathering mint for our mojitos.

Ready for my Blackberry/Raspberry and Mint Mojito

The mint is an herb and a cancer killer and the berries are loaded with antioxidants.

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One of a Kind Birdbath

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I guarantee that no one has one exactly like mine.

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Unique Little Birdbath

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These were also two odds and ends that I decided to put together and create another bird bath in our backyard.  I just used some silicone glue.  Both items were from different fountains.

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Statuary Mirroring Itself

I sometimes stack urns or pedestals on top of urns and pedestals.  It gives height to our backyard among the Boston ferns and elephant ears.

Beautiful Roses

You would think that roses would do well here in central Florida but they don’t.  I do buy them and nurture them and appreciate them but they inevitably die.  But I do enjoy them while I have them.

Spring is Everywhere


I have a thing for spring pink!

The little table above, I put together myself from a fountain piece and a stepping stone that I had rounded off by Outdoor Impressions.  They are a company that are featured quite often on the DIY Network.  They kept chipping away at it until it was round.  It was originally square.

The lovely cement pot top right is leaning, but still very pretty.

I love lizards all over my statuary.  This lizard sits on this pot most every day sunning himself.  He is so welcome in our backyard.

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I love little statuary dotted around the backyard.

The Backyard Foo Dogs, Monk and Sugar

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Pretty Poop Urn

Do you have pets?  Want something pretty to put their poop in? 

How about a pretty statuary urn with a lid?  Gordon made this one himself.

Gordon’s how-to instruction video on making one for yourself.

Pretty Poop Bucket youtube play

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Fountain Maintenance

Keeping a fountain running and operating does take work.  It doesn’t always look beautiful.  We do have a big mold problem here in Florida and our fountain will turn a black color occasionally.  See the photos down below.

 

Pretty green and white carnations floating in the fountain.

But we do spray bleach onto the statuary in our yard and then everything turns a beautiful bright white color again.

I love these shots that I took of our fountain with my new camera.  I can now take pictures of water! 

How Kewl is That?

 

Beautiful Water!

 

I took these from my breakfast nook.

Here Brodie is trying to syphon the water out of the fountain along with the tadpoles that were living in it.  

You can see for yourself how bad it can get.

Brodie and Gordon are trying to save the tadpoles and just move them to some other pots that we have on the property so that they can live, we didn’t want to kill them.

I ended up sacrificing my cooking strainer to this endeavor, but not to worry, I dashed off to the Asian supermarket and bought another one.

Be sure to look out for the living things in your backyard.  They are important to our eco-system and we need them just as much as they need us, if not more.

 

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Halloween Statuary

The magic potion……..

Gordon and Julie in our backyard.

Our Floating Ghost

Our fountain also makes a great backdrop for any occasion, even Halloween.

Our Ghostly Fountain

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Ghostly Fishy Fountain

Try adding dry ice to your outdoor fountains to make them eerily delicious!!

Also try placing a “ghost” next to it.  Gordon and I made this one from some chicken wire and fabric.

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Statuary Treasure Find!

Gordon was driving home from work and found these two beautiful rustic pots sitting on the side of the road.  What a find!  They have sea shells embedded all around. Very heavy.   How perfect is that?  They now house our herbs in our herb garden.  Nothing beats FREE!  

The next cement pot we acquired from a neighbor that was moving who didn’t want to take it with him.

I love the detail, I love the green mold and I love that it was also FREE!

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Spring in the Backyard

I needed a place to put these lovely plants until I could plant them and I chose to place them in the fountain.  A lovely temporary place to keep them.  But they do look lovely.

Our Easter Hydrangeas. 

Once we were finished with from our Easter table I then planted them outside in the back.  They look wonderful!

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My Fountains

Living in beautiful Florida with it’s mild climate allows us to spend a lot of time outdoors year round.  One pleasure of mine is enjoying my beautiful fountains.  Just hearing the water trickle down and being around that kind of calmness is very therapeutic.

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When our azalea’s are in bloom it just doesn’t get any better than this.

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This fountain is a wall mount.  Gordon and I put two very large urns in front of it.  It has such a wow factor in this corner of our lanai.

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This beauty sits outside our kitchen nook bay window for us to look at year round.  There is just something very calming here.

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Statuary Accents

These two flower looking statuary accents actually belong on a fountain.  I thought they would look nice right outside our lanai door.

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My Gargoyles

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I wanted to share my gargoyle collection with you.  Gargoyles are symbolically the protectors to ward off evil spirits.  Usually seen on churches.  They look all mean and vicious but they aren’t.  I place my gargoyles on the ledge as you enter our home.  I love these very high Florida ceilings.  I enjoy looking up at them.

My men faces I have here are also a “gargoyle” type.  Some monks faces were placed on rooftops and walls as well.

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My Foo Dogs, or more correctly Lion Dogs or Imperial Guardian Lions, that you see throughout my website and my home, have traditionally stood in front of Chinese Imperial Palaces, Imperial tombs, government offices, and temples from the Han Dynasty (206 BC – AD 220) and still today.

Pairs of guardian lions are still common decorative and symbolic elements as seen at entrances to restaurants, hotels, my house…….. 

The lions are always created in pairs, usually with the male resting his paw upon the world and the female restraining a playful cub that is on it’s back.  But not always as seen here with my two Foo Dogs that I purchased at my favorite statuary business.  They remind me of Monk and Sugar. 

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Another one of my “gargoyles” that serves as a plant stand.

The original purpose of the gargoyles on the rooftops were as decorative rain spouts.  They made this strange gurgling noise as the water would drain down the pipe.   Now they are just symbolic of times past to be enjoyed by people like me.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   One way that we like to add some structure, beauty  and personality to our yard is with statuary.  By statuary I don’t necessarily mean statues.  Because of our 13 years of living in Hawaii we are very fond of the Asian cultures.  Hawaii has a very large Asian population and that influence has stayed with us.
So I suppose that our yard would be considered very Asian.  But we don’t limit ourselves to just that.

Gordon and I visiting our favorite statuary business in Largo, Florida.P6110002_small

P6110008_small                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Me inspecting the ‘scratched and dented’ section.  Never overlook the section in the back with the flawed items for sale.  We have found some of our most beautiful pieces there.  It has a lovely ‘museum’ quality.  Something that looks as if it once lived on some grand beautiful  country estate.  

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There is such beauty here.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Here are two of our purchases that we made that day.  Learn to look beyond the mildew covered items to see the potential.  Sometimes all they need is a good cleaning up.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We drove both our cars that day knowing that we would be buying quite a bit.  Also the statuary can be very heavy and you need the room to distribute the weight in your vehicle.  We also made sure that we loaded a few old moving blankets to help protect the items that we bought as well as to protect our vehicles upholstery.

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Our purchases for the day.  We ended up spending around $240.00.

Now comes the job of cleaning them up.  All that is required is a garden hose with a ‘jet setting’ and some bleach and a way to distribute that bleach.  We use a spray pump.

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Just lay the items out in a section of your yard away from grass and other plants.  The bleach can kill them.  Next give them a good washing with a garden hose.

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Next start spraying the bleach onto each item.  I use a generous amount, soaking each item.  Then I let it sit there for an hour or so, then spray them again with another generous amount of bleach.  I do this about three times.  You will start to see them brighten up.  Once they are nice and bright then I give them a good rinse off with the water, just to make sure the bleach residue is gone.   

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You can see the mildew on this tulip shaped planter.  I’m pointing out some rough edges that I want my husband to scrape off.

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Now look how white and bright and beautiful they all are.  Doesn’t even look like the same items that we bought.

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This pelican is one of the items that we bought on our shopping trip above.  Once I had bleached the pelican outside I brought her in to give her a good bath in the sink and let her soak for a little while.  She will be a gift to the condo from me.  Because she is imperfect she was only $5.00, normally she would have cost around $20.00.
I like the texture of these imperfections.  She looks as though someone made her on the beach out of sand.

Now she resides at the condo.

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Here is an example of the rough edges that just need to be removed and smoothed out.

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  Perfection.  Now with a lovely white Ape’ added.

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 Just lovely.

Here is the tulip bowl from above.  All cleaned up and rough edges smoothed away.

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Here are 3 more purchases that we made.  The pedestal, the urn and the lovely planter holders.  There are four of them supporting the urn.  They have spatterings of white on the gray.  A mistake when made but I really like it.

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This is our logo urn.  We decided to elevate the urn because the ferns were starting to overwhelm it.  So we just grabbed some bricks to put under the urn and that solved the problem.

Same with this urn as well.  Also another purchase that we made.

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Here is me standing in front of all three urns.  A Chinese evergreen is on the right.  A variegated Ape’ is almost hidden behind me.  We wanted some height and some structure amongst all the Boston ferns.  I think they stand out beautifully against the white fence.

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Remember the large planter that we bought from above?  All cleaned up and ready to be placed where we want it in our backyard.

 

 

First you want to make sure there is drainage at the bottom of the planter.  Gordon added a plastic piece with holes that will allow for water to drain through.  Also some bricks and a blob of old cement that hardened on the ground when we installed our fence.  Hey, it works.  

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Chinese Lanterns. that were a gift for Gordon’s birthday.  We grew them from seeds.  Gordon adds some potting soil over the bricks.  Makes a hole for the plants.

Would hardly know that it was the same planter that we bought.  Can’t wait for the Chinese lantern’s beautiful blossoms.


  Remember this purchase from above?  It belonged on a fountain.

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I added a plant to the hole and some water in the bowl.  It looks nice amongst some plants on our lanai table.

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The base for this table and the garden accent below is actually from a fountain.  We bought them a few years ago from a fountain store that was going out of business.  I didn’t know what I was going to do with them at the time.  But I knew they were too beautiful to pass up.  They were $5.00 each.  We glued a circular stone to the top of one to make a plant stand, or table, and I put the other one in the backyard in a flower bed, planted some soil into the middle and added a lovely green coleus.

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Beauty in the Backyard

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