The snow storm of the century is expected to roll through tonight, through Friday, so why not talk all things landscaping? 🙂
Our yard has been a source of frustration since we moved in. Mainly because we haven’t had the time to devote to making it look halfway decent, but also because we just don’t know what to do.
Mark my words, this is the season when our yard takes a turn for the better. Why is this year different? Well, we’re both so fed up with looking at it that we had a “as-serious-as-we-can-get” planning chat to talk through what we want to change… and then we worked it into our summer schedule. Friends, you know something is official when it makes its way onto the summer calendar. 😛
We also vowed that we would not, under any circumstances, work on anything inside until the landscaping was done-ish. I add that little caveat because let’s be honest, landscaping is never actually done. I feel like it’s the work gift that keeps on giving, year after year, until forever.
So, without further ado, let’s jump into the plans!
Around the House
Last year, I transferred a few Day Lillies along the path up to our house. Between all the construction on actually putting up the garage last year, I’m not confident that any of them survived. Which, is okay, because I’d rather put something a little larger there, like Hydrangeas. I have a few along the fence that I want to transfer up to this space. I think they’ll make more of a statement along the house and the white of the hydrangea flower will really pop against our new siding!
Moving to the south/southeast side, we have half-rotten railroad ties. The section along the back of the house doesn’t have any plastic along the bottom, so the sand/dirt drains down towards the back door every year and it’s such a pain. So, we want to rip out that entire section and add in grass. Eventually, this will be covered by the wraparound deck, but that’s years away.
For the section that juts out to the southeast, we want to take that out, replace it with stone and extend it east so it acts as more of a retaining wall. We haven’t configured the exact layout yet or where the stone will “start” so it’s more of a rough idea right now. There’s a slight slope and the dirt/rock mix we laid down last year for the driveway runs off. Hopefully, the stone retaining wall will help contain that and make it easier to walk down the slope.
Moving to the north side of the house… it’s just a mess. I’ve half-assed planted things along the house, seeing if they’ll grow and then wind up neglecting the entire area. We don’t go over here too much, so by mid-summer, everything is overgrown and sad looking. This year I am hoping to keep on it and get to a point of seeing grass – not just weeds and leaves!
Last summer, we added a wood deck on top of the crumbling cement slab. It’s our new favorite hangout spot and we’re completely in love. This year, we want to finish it off by adding a privacy fence on the east (the pillars are there right now, ready to go!) and a pergola over the top to shade our outdoor farmhouse table. On the other side, we want to add a built-in bar top that overlooks the lake.
On the west side of the deck there’s a two-ish foot area of grass that we’re going to till up and put in some short bushes and flowers; this will also wrap around a little to the north as well as to the south along the retaining wall (that part is not pictured).
We tried our hand at putting in a vegetable garden last year and we were fairly successful! We’re wanting to do that again this year but have plans of extending the garden to also include the cut flowers.
The cut flower garden started along the house by the backyard fence. It is a great spot, except that when I water, I wind up hitting more of the house than the actual garden. So, we’re tearing that out and planting lilac bushes along the fence. Eventually that square space will be covered by the wraparound deck, so we’re planning ahead and moving it now.
To the east, between our driveway and the road, is this awkward middle space with a mixture of trees, weeds, bushes, dirt piles… just an overgrown mess. It’s something we’ve tried “cleaning up” every spring but somewhere around July and August, the weeds just overtake and it becomes too much to manage that we leave it be.
The goal is to get rid of the weeds and clear out all the dirt piles to even out of the surface. Then, along the road, we want to plant something like an evergreen or arborvitae so we can have year-round privacy. In front of the columns, I’d like to add some annual flowers that’ll brighten up the entrance – because while we enjoy our privacy, we’d still like to be welcoming 🙂
So, there you have it. Our 2019 landscaping plans. As usual, it’s a mile-long list… but here’s to ambitious plans and rock solid follow through! 😀
And, if you have plants/bushes you love, share them with us below!
All our best,