Although I don’t really have any of my own, I love lawn ornaments. They make such a big statement about the gardener. One of our popular categories here at Gardener’s Supply is Yard and Garden Decor, which includes plenty of garden whimsy. Our Funky Chickens have proved to be a huge hit. When the Party Pigs came out this year, I thought of my friend Joy, who ornaments her Colorado garden with a concrete pig named Iowna, as in “I own a pig.”
At 900 pounds, this pig makes a big statement. Joy picked her out of a lineup of angels, toadstools, “horrid deer and other critters” at a concrete place in Denver. The pig arrived with her son in a Chevy Luv pickup, but unloading the beast proved difficult. A forklift couldn’t handle it, so Joy asked for help from her neighbors, who run a mortuary. Using a device designed to move vaults and monuments, they put Iowna in her new home.
Iowna’s companion is a piglet, which is much easier to move. “Unfortunately,” Joy says, “you don’t want to have a little pig like that in your very front yard. It used to be kidnapped all the time. Among the ransom notes left: ‘Bring a six-pack of Bud to such-and-such-a-place if you ever want to see your darling again.’ One time we came home, the little guy was lying on his back with his feet up in the air and a rope tied as a noose around his neck and looped over the branch overhead. This note said: ‘I just can’t take it anymore and decided to commit pigicide.'”
The pigs also drew unwanted attention when her son was in middle school. He says: “At the time, the old hotel across the street from us doubled as the Greyhound bus terminal, and it was not unusual for people to ring our doorbell and ask if they could pose with the pig for a picture.”
Some people might say that lawn ornaments are tacky, but it’s all subjective. There is no wrong. If you’re going to add some garden whimsy, I say, do it like Joy and make it big. Whether it’s Funky Chickens, Party Pigs, a pink flamingo or a 900-pound concrete pig. You’re sure to meet some interesting people—just like you.