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Our Yard: The 10 Year Project

Posted by on May 22, 2014

I am so looking forward to a three day weekend so I can get a few things done in our yard.  Wouldn’t you know it that on the week of our one year house (and wedding) anniversary, our lawn mower decided it just didn’t want to work anymore.  And of course the grass knew what was up and grew like crazy with some of the rain we had a few weeks in a row.  Needless to say, we are THOSE neighbors.  At least we do live in the city where HOAs do not exist and there are other yards worse off.

Right now the yard is actually irritating me because I dont really know what to do and it is EXPENSIVE!  I’m about to bombard you with pictures and hopeful plans for this current jungle of mine

IMG_7574Here is our yard looking out from the backdoor.  It is a really awesome sized lot for living in the city.  Very naturous (yes, a word) and very quiet!  Notice how TALL the grass is.

IMG_7575My plan here is to start over.  The first third of the yard is planted with bermuda sod that died and the back two-thirds has everything and anything growing.  It is really hard to walk back there, so we have to have it grated, tilled, and flattened.  I think you read the same thing I did, $$$$.

Another view from the back door.  The dreaded hill that I hate so much.  I can’t begin to tell you how much trash is start to erode out from under the depths.  IMG_7576Here is a few of the side yard.  There is absolutely NO sun over there and it really irritates me that the seller placed bermuda grass over there.  If you do not know anything about grass, bermuda is a temperamental little bastard.  It died after last year and thanks to the grating of this spot, it floods, bad.

My plan for this section is to essentially turn it into a shade garden.  I want to kill all of the grass and extend the path from the gate to the back.  I will plant shade loving plants and maybe even place a fire pit over here. First though we have to add some drainage to stop the water from poolingIMG_7577The patio.  I decided to leave it the hot mess that it is because I am being lazy today.  My plan here is to update the pillows, clean the cushions/dye them a darker color, buy a rug, lighting, add more character.  IMG_7578What a mess!!  Can you see the line of what was sod and what was seed?  It was a pain it is right now because it is essentially mud when it rains!!  We are going to sod the whole yard, but we need to save up for this venture first.  
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The hill.  Sigh.  I never knew this hill would bother me so much.  I am trying to work in sections just so I am not so overwhelmed with what I need to do with it.  There have been signs of erosion, so I have a few years left to act.  The section in the picture I planted everything you see.  Two tall bush trees (ugh I forgot their names), three azaleas, one hydrangea, rosemary, and a few creepers.  I need one more azalea bush and a few more creepers in this section to hopefully slow the erosion down. I also need to build out the bed with stone

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Check out our garden!  I am so proud of this.  We dug the tiers out with our bare hands and spent a lot of time prepping these beds to move up from the crappy clay we have to work with.  The tomatoes are still green, but the plant is about 3′ tall and have 14 maters growing.  I just pulled all the lettuce because it reached it’s mature age and need to replace it with something else.  Our cucumbers came back strong, but our strawberries aren’t really producing.  We also have peppers, tons of onions, blackberries, kale, and spinach

We have to finish out the path between the tiers and build the back wall to the top tier to hold the hill up.  I have the wood for that, just need to actually do it.  Then we would like to build steps going to the second tier. IMG_7581

There is talk about building two more of these, but that will be my limit.  It was really hard!!IMG_7582

This is the wall to our bedroom.  If I had my way and unlimited money, I would build out a porch and install french doors from our room.  I dont have all the money, so I will have to settle with mulching the bed and building a stone wall around it.  IMG_7583

The other side of the house.  This is where I pushed all of my leaves to.  Nothing is growing back there and I dont think anything can.  I toyed with installing  a putting green there, but I dont know if that would hurt resale. IMG_7584

Our little shed.  This was a week project in the heat of August last year, but so worth it.  We do not have a garage, so this has been a life saver.  I’d like to build a bed around the side of the shed and extend it along the fence.  First, I will need to chicken wire the space under the shed to keep my kitties out.  IMG_7585

I transplanted the plants next to the shed from my mom’s yard.  Apparently they reproduce like crazy and I could use some vegetation over there.  The biggest problem is the magnolia tree in the lot next to us.  The leaves are a PAIN and stink when they start rotting. IMG_7586

This is the other side of the shed.  NOTHING will grow here either, so part of me wants to extend some outdoor storage over there so we dont have to deal, but I have no immediate plan.  We also need to build out the bed where I have planted my creepers and jasmine.IMG_7587

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The hill seems to collect a lot of kudzu, so I have to keep on top of keeping it rounded up until we get things planted on it.  I would love to tier it off, but that is a costly project.  IMG_7590

IMG_7591The fence on the wall (which I do not think is ours) has a bit of a gansta lean to it, so I would like to tighten that up and it would be super awesome to put a smooth, top coat on the wall.

First and foremost, we need to mow the dang grass!!!

Plans for the immediate future:

  • clean up and spruce up the patio
  • add outdoor lighting
  • replace back porch lighting/replace burned out bulbs
  • add a border to the back and bedroom flower bed
  • finish quadrant one of the hill

Plans for the future:

  • Till, level, sod the yard
  • build a shade pathway on the side of the house
  • add two more garden tiers
  • plant on the hill to stop the kudzu and erosion
  • add a border to the hill
  • build out a bed around the shed
  • hope someone buys the lot next to us so they have to remove some of the trees to build
  • remove the tree stump on the hill
  • build a path on the side of the house

Plans for the not forseeable future because we wont be in the house long enough:

  • extend the patio
  • build another seating area in the yard with pergola
  • replace the wall
  • do something with the dead side yard on the other side of the house

So it looks like we have our work cut out for us.  Anyone have a landscaper friend?!?!

One Response to Our Yard: The 10 Year Project

  1. Morgan

    Dude, that hill. It would drive me mad too! Looks like you have a good plan of action! I’m currently working on cleaning up our yard and while I don’t have anything to complain about compared to yours, I am still frustrated with the previous owners lack of homeownership because they left layers upon layers of leaves to rot in the flower beds and grass that we’re cleaning up and it’s taking f.o.r.e.v.e.r.

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