Category Archives: Country Living

Triad Photography Sessions at Wildflower Walk Gardens

Say Cheese at Wildflower Walk with your favorite photographer. Diana Digs Dirt is providing a rustic, country-style, natural setting (at her home) for your portraits.  Not only does the site house antique farm equipment, animals too. Other outdoor vignettes (or scenes) include:

  • Goat Pastures (inhabited with friendly goats, horses and a donkey)
  • Hay Field (filled with wildflowers of white(asters-daisys), violet(red clover), blue(bachelor button) and gold)
  • Small running stream in the woods with tiny beaches and tree outcroppings covered in moss and ferns


The 2 photographs below were taken by Tammy Councilman of Portrait Expressions by Tammy Councilman

  • Barns, Barns and more Barns (all constructed of various building material)
  • Old Farmhouse with wrap-a-round porch
  • Wooded Area (with your choice of tractor equipment)

  • Animal Stables
  • Flowering Shrubs, Trees, Perennials, Groundcovers and Daffodil Bulbs
  • Lush, green lawns
  • Memory Garden with Bluestone Benches, Roses and Crape Myrtle Trees

  • Wrought Iron Fencing
  • Wooden Fencing
  • Pergolas with Climbing Roses and Clematis

The local photographers listed below are partnering with Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal, our local (monthly) free paper addressing loss and healing where stories are shared to educate one another on how we can Better Support each other.

Come to Wildflower Walk for-

  • Wedding Photography
  • Engagement Session Photography
  • Senior Portraits
  • Anniversary Pictures
  • Baby Pictures
  • Family Portraits
  • Graduation
  • and other moments you would like to capture in this type of natural setting

These photographers have their own distinct styles, please click on their websites to choose the company to best suit your family’s needs. The address of Wildflower Walk will be disclosed by the photographer for safety measures (this is the happy and floriferous abode of Diana Digs Dirt).

The partnership is available as of January 27th 2011. Additional photos of Wildflower Walk found here. Book your session today to continue providing this resource for the Triad.


We thank the photographers and we thank our community for helping support the journal, “Where we learn from each other how to support one another”.













Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Calling All Photographers of the Piedmont Triad

Wildflower Walk would like to extend their gardens for your outdoor photographic backdrops including;  goat pastures (friendly), tractors, stables, aged barns, wildflowers meadow, rose garden, hay-field, slow running stream with small beaches, wooded areas, pergola with vine, and flowering plants, green lawn area, brick walkway, and a pea gravel water garden where grounds are maintained  by Diana Digs Dirt and 360 Landscape and Lawn Maintenance.


The changing seasons are always presenting  new and wonderful backdrops for pictures including, family portraits, wedding or engagement, (no pets because of many animals onsite), or children photography. Why are we doing this? To raise money for the publication Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal.

Your company will be listed as a supporter of Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal. Our local and free, human interest paper addressing loss, healing, and memorials. Situations include those who have lost a loved one, pregnancy or beloved pet and the diverse pathways to a brighter day. Online journals listed here.


We ask for a $25.00 (per shoot) donation towards the journal for utilizing Wildflower Walk to offset printing costs and we will list your company and backlink on Diana Digs Dirt and Just a Cloud Away, Inc, ™ Journal Blogs. They receive a combined 400 daily users. Even if you do not use this offer, your company will remain listed. A win/win situation.

With your client’s consent, your company can receive added exposure by Diana Digs Dirt blogging of your photo session at Wildflower Walk, describing surrounding plants with an additional backlink to your site.




Please take advantage of this offer, we are hoping to continue Just a Cloud Away Inc. ™ Journal for our bereaved community members wanting to share stores of their loved ones passed while walking the healing journey. We will only learn through sharing how better to support one another.




Every photographer who donates will be recognized in print for the following month’s journal.

Please email, Diana (@) just a cloud away. com for the address and thank you for considering to support the journal.

If you are not a business and would like to have your photographer added to our list, please have them contact us.

Happy Planting!
Diana Digs Dirt
Landscape Design, Installations, Consultations and Speaking Engagements

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Landscape Company and Shabby Chic Paint

Onward with the transformation of my office into something shabby chic with a  hint of the romantic. Since I am a landscape designer and a women, I am entitled to chance my mind. Instead of the peachy walls, I have gravitated toward a more subtle paint color.


The ceiling color is something I mixed and the wall color was recommended by my interior designer, Kasey Stamey of Clerestory Design. I told her I picked up 1 role of wallpaper from a second hand store that I had to use. Very small pin strips of cream and peach. Khaki was Kasey’s choice to paint the other walls. I searched Sherwin Williamscolors in Oakridge, NC and fell in love with Biscuit.

In the middle of painting, numerous shabby chic projects are floating through my brain. Since I throw almost nothing away and I love recycling, old buttons were glued to thumb tacks.


Some of these date back to the 80’s. Perfect bling for shabby chic/romantic.


My girlfriend renovated her new house and was discarding the old medicine cabinet. Well, I snatched it up fast.


I will probably decoupage antique papers onto the back side. A light coat of Biscuit was dry brushed onto the frame and frosty spray was applied to the shelves.


Details of the shabby chic/romantic room should pull everything together. This interior design project will take me awhile to complete because many ideas need to be implemented or constructed. With the guidance of Kasey Stamey, my new office will inspire nothing but the best landscape design ideas for you.

Happy Planting!

Diana Gardner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Kids Making Winter Bird Suet

If your kids are bored and need a craft or activity to conquer, suggest making bird suet for the hungry birds. Winter can be tough for our feathered friends needing to feed their bellies.


I made sure all the ingredients were gathered before my highly energetic son sat down with me to make the suet. The recipe was obtained from another blog where Iris writes about Greensboro Birds.

Here is the list of ingredients:

  • 2 cups of corn meal
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1 cup of lard
  • 1 cup of bird seed
  • 1 cup of peanut butter
  • 2 cups of quick oats
  • 1/3 cup sugar

Melt the peanut butter and lard in sauce pan. Add the sugar, mix until dissolved.


Combine all the other ingredients and mix dry and wet together.


We then placed this yummy bird suet into a bread pan. We let the mixture harden in the freezer overnight and cut slices in the morning. This recipe really makes quite a bit. I didn’t want to save any and placed slices everywhere in our garden. 2 bird suet feeders, a birdhouse, the birdbath and a couple of chairs. The next day the word was out. Dozens of birds came from afar to nibble at the tasty suet. The cardinals, bluebirds, yellow finches and chickadees were pleasantly watched from my kitchen window.


I am so pleased they loved their suet. I tell you, starting off my morning watching the birds with a cup of coffee is absolutely the best way to begin my day.

Try this activity or craft with the kids. Sure it’s a little messy but well worth it.

Happy Planting!

Diana Gardner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation


Posted by on February 13, 2009 in Country Living, Crafts


Tags: , , , ,

8th Goat Killed by Black Vultures in NC

Warning-this post contains graphics pictures of a goat killed by black vultures.

Our pet goat named Buddy was killed by black vultures yesterday. He is the 8th death in the last 3 months due to the salvage predators, black vultures.

Buddy’s mother had to be put down for an unfortunate reason and this little goat was lovingly cared for by our family. 4 nights he slept by my bedside for evening bottle feedings and came to work with me on landscape projects. Since there had been many goat killings we placed him in a pasture with 3 adult horses and thought he was safe.

I had spoken to a North Carolina Fish and Wildlife agent 4 weeks ago regarding these killings. He seemed to receive this information rather lightly. He was quite surprised that most of our goats were averaging 20 pounds when killed. 20 pounds could be one of our dogs, our cats or even a small child.

I would think great suffering was endured because of the blunt bills and weak feet of these birds.

 It is said the eyes of prey are pecked out, blinding them for an easier kill.

Since I work much of the time at home I am well aware of the many black vultures scoping our pastures looking for their next meal. If they are flying low enough, their wing span completely shadows the sun and visible from within my home. Before I was aware Buddy was killed I noticed several black vultures flying low over our pastures. That is not a good sign. They are always here and I have a feeling their next goat will be prancer, the oldest goat on our land.

If anyone has some answers, please send along to us. It would be greatly appreciated.

Diana Gardner-Williams


Posted by on July 15, 2008 in Country Living


Tags: , , , ,

Recycled Materials Landscaping Dog Lots and Runs

Not only are recycled materials used in landscaping but also for our 4 legged friends, our dogs.

I love our 3 dogs we purchased from the Guilford County Animal Shelter. I have designed their dog lot with comfort and function in mind by using various leftover stone, brick, wood and roofing material. Nothing but the best for Greta, Monty and Moby.

This is the entrance of their dog lot. It was built within a wooded area to provide shade in the summer and sun in the winter. I had some brick, boulders and stone leftover from some of my landscape projects and decided to create a nice walkway for us and 12 tiny paws. I loved combining different materials for their rustic retreat.

This is dry laid on top of stone screenings. You could use sand also. Just make sure all stone and brick are tamped with a mallet to ensure minimal movement.

This is great because when it’s time to feed them I never have to get my feet wet.

Inside the dog lot or run, is where a little more elbow grease was used. There is a slight slope where stone was used to terrace the entryway for a stone patio. The saying, “Never poop where you eat” doesn’t apply to my dogs. Because of the hard stone surface I can quickly wash away any droppings with a hose. This was also dry laid, however, because of digging some mortar was used in specific places for those favorite excavation spots.

The dog house is very accomodating and spacious. The home was raised off the ground by 4×4 posts and constructed with odd pieces of lumber.

The shingles were leftover from the construction of our home and makes a wonderful protective barrier.

The roof has another function as well, a lookout post. It’s like having their own roof garden. The roof has enough pitch for rain to run off, but not enough so the dogs can enjoy the great outdoors on an elevated surface.

The roof was designed with a slight overhang. This enables me to place their food bowl underneath and provide another lounging area for the dogs. Thick stone was placed around the perimeter where moby loves to lay because of its cool temperature.

The rest of the dog area has a thick layer of stone screenings for easy poop clean up. The finely ground stone material is great for digging as well because there is little mud an we can just rake it back into place.

The water source is a few feet from the dog lot and also designed with recycled stone.

Doesn’t your pets deserve the best.

Happy Planting!

Diana Gardner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation



Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Black Vultures Killing North Carolina Goats

WARNING! This post contains graphic pictures of our goat killed by black vultures.

In the past 6 weeks 7 goats have been viciously attacked and killed by these vultures and we are unaware of what to do.

We live in a rural area south of Greensboro, North Carolina for the past 3 years. There are 2 separate goat pastures. The one on the far side also contains 3 large horses. The one closest to our house has just goats.

6 weeks ago walking along the driveway I noticed about 15 vultures in the pasture, which means only one thing, something is dead. I ran in to chase them off and 4 baby goats were killed and half eaten.

At that point we weren’t sure if something else killed them first and the vultures were there cleaning up. After some research my father-in-law said there was a new vulture in town, other than the Turkey Vulture. This bird called the Black Vulture preys on livestock.

A couple weeks after the first attack another goat was killed. Then 2 more were killed within days of each other. One of the deceased goats were in the middle of an open field with many twigs around her. This tells me the birds came down from the trees breaking off branches as they landed.

The way the goats were eaten started from behind and some of their eyes were pecked out. The head of the goat was usually left behind. I have seen so much horror that I am numb to it now. I just want to find out how to stop this. I know the birds have great eye sight and wondering if they are killing in the evening hours.

The last goat to be killed was at least 5 months old and not a helpless baby.

I have been sleeping close to the back door so I can hear goats yelling and possibly scare the birds off. Vultures don’t make much noise at all.

I noticed goat hair 20 feet from where she died. It looks like she tried to get away, poor thing.

We love our goats and I am deeply disturbed by all of this unnecessary killing.

I have put a call into the North Carolina Wildlife Services Office at 919-786-4480 today and hoping to hear a response soon. We have taken it upon ourselves to kill a few black vultures that have found a home in a nearby tobacco barn.

We may need a Migratory Bird Depredation Permit issued by the US Fish and Wildlife Service to shoot these birds. If anyone has some insight on this matter, please respond.

We Love Our Goats!!!!

Diana Gardner-Williams




Posted by on June 24, 2008 in Country Living


Tags: , , , ,