Friday, July 22, 2011

Our DIY Backyard Vineyard

Six years ago, my husband came home from the town dump with his truck full of cast-off fence posts and announced he was going to build a grape arbor. We had recently visited his Aunt Elva at her farm along the banks of the Appomattox River in Virginia. Although she is in her 80's, Aunt Elva still grows grapes and makes her own wine; she wrote down the recipe for us to take home to Maine. Of course, before we could make the wine, we had to build an arbor and grow some grapes....that's where the old fence posts from the dump came in.

Here is where the project began...in 2005. By cutting, tying and nailing, DH repurposed the old fence posts into an arbor.

Even though we hadn't planted grapes yet, I couldn't wait to decorate the new outdoor space.

Six years later,  it is a shady backyard retreat on these steamy July days...

Where we can enjoy a cool meal on a summer afternoon...

While the grapes slowly ripen in the sun.

"Live in each season as it passes:  breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit."  Henry David Thoreau


For now we're still buying our wine...

But it shouldn't be long before we unfold Aunt Elva's old recipe and bottle the first of our "Winn Farm" vintage.
All it took was an old fence from the dump, a creative DH, and a lot of patience. When the grapes have ripened (and I've finished stomping them?), you'll all be invited for a sip of our first Chateau de Hank. Cheers!

Since I've been "away" and missed so many great blog parties these last two weeks, I'm catching up today and joining them all! I hope you'll enjoy visiting these creative blogs:
Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps On the Porch
Time Travel Thursday at Brambleberry Cottage
Thrifty Thursday at Tales From Bloggeritaville
Under $100. Linky Party at Beyond The Picket Fence
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Outdoor Wednesday at A Southern Daydreamer
Show & Tell Friday at My Romantic Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
Open House Party at No Minimalist Here
Transformations & Treasures at The Pink Postcard
Vintage Inspiration Friday at Common Ground
Cottage Flora Thursdays at Fishtail Cottage
Saturday Nite Special at Funky Junk Interiors
Addicts Anonymous Link Party at Addicted 2 Decorating
Good Life Wednesday at A Beach Cottage

14 comments:

Linda @ A La Carte said...

I love this post! What a great idea. A grape arbor is so romantic and hey one day homemade wine!

Alycia Nichols said...

What a handy guy!!!! Your hubby's visit to the town dump is going to yield years and years of fruit as well as that BEAUTIFUL setting! I am amazed at how beautiful it is...from old fence posts!!! We had a small grape arbor on our property when I was a kid (not as pretty as the one you guys have put together!), and we could never resist those juicy, sweet purple grapes. That really takes me back! Perhaps you will watch "A Walk in the Clouds" for inspiration before you get to stomping those grapes! Have fun with it!

La Vie Quotidienne said...

What a charming, lovely spot...how perfect to enjoy a meal here. It looks so appealing and relaxing. Have a great day...and enjoy those grapes!

Fishtail Cottage said...

So cute & darling garden! Would love to have you share at Cottage Flora Thursdays garden party! oxox, tracie

⚜ ↁℯℬℬᴵℰ⚜ said...

What a charming garden Cheryl! I love it....

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

Hi Cheryl, Thank you so much for joining the Open House party this week. This is such a pretty space in your garden. Beautiful!
xo,
Sherry

Cozy Home Scenes said...

What a wonderful, cozy, and private getaway. It's obvious how you love it even without the wine. Your husband was very clever for thinking to put that together.

Sewn With Grace said...

Love the arbor and can't wait for you to be able to make your own wine!

Denise at PinkPostcard. said...

What a truly romantic space!!! I adore this. I can just hear generations after you telling the story of how the vineyard started! :) it looks gorgeous and I love the wire benches. Thanks so much for linking up to the party. This is truly a transformation AND a treasure!

A Few Pennies said...

Beautiful spot to escape to--it was well worth the wait to achieve such a pretty, private area. Charming!

Maryjane-The Beehive Cottage said...

Look how the years have brought such a sweet and peaceful place! Your husband had a vision and you reap from it! Wishing you many more summer days!

Hugs,
Maryjane

Ann said...

Thats so cool. My Dad always grew his own grapes, and my grandpa always made homemade wine every fall. Enjoy!

Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage said...

How charming! But I must admit, I'm envious. I've wanted a grape arbor since we bought our farm six years ago, and I STILL don't have one. Maybe I need to find some fence posts at the dump and build one myself. ;)

Thanks for linking to the party. I love having you join me.

Blessings,
Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage
http://thebrambleberrycottage.blogspot.com/

Betty (picture circa 1951) said...

When I was growing up our next door neighbors had a grape arbor. I remember the grapes hanging down, but I don't believe they made wine. With seven kids I guess they ate them all.