We’ve lived in this house for almost three years and have yet to touch the landscaping — Unless “landscaping” includes ripping up a dead bush in the front yard and taking down a small dying tree. We’ve had so much to do on the inside of the house that the landscaping has been put on the back burner. Eventually, we really want to have the front yard done by a pro (or at the very least get a consultation from one), but we thought it would be fun to try our hands at a little DIY landscaping in the back yard… where no one will see it if we royally mess up. All kidding aside, we just thought since we’re doing so much work to makeover the
carport covered patio, part of the yard we’d be looking at while sitting back enjoying our new outdoor living area could use some sprucing up, too.
Okay, some major sprucing up. To make the before photos even worse, this was taken right before the grass was cut. We decided to take baby steps and begin with just this back corner of our house, which also happens to be the biggest eyesore. Luckily, it’s small enough of an area to not be too overwhelming for our non-landscaper selves.
Here’s what it looks like from the side…
To give you a reference point of where this is, that’s our bedroom window on the top left of the photo, and you can see the carport over on the right. If you look closely, you can also catch a glimpse of the sheetrock from the ceiling removal process – which is on its way to the dump in the very near future. Between the carport and these bushes is the aggregate patio.
The most obvious dilemma is the biiiiiig bush that is choking out pretty much everything around it. Would you believe that we trim this unruly plant several times a year and it still manages to get that big? Not only is it (in decorating terms) “too big for the space”, it’s beginning to kill the bushes next to it. On top of the out-of-control plantlife, there’s not a defined bed of any sort, which makes everything look ultra messy.
After Greg and I got a good understanding of the area and made a mental list of the problems we wanted to address, we sat down and came up with a plan of action. Along with that plan, in typical 7th House fashion, came a diagram of the whole area. Here’s what we’re thinking…
1 // First up, we need to cut Sasquatch back so he doesn’t continue to choke all of the other shrubs around him. Once big guy is trimmed, we’ll move on to the other bushes and trim those back to give everything a more polished, separated look and help their overall health. Google searching starts now.
2 // Speaking of trimming, we have a tiny Japanese Maple in the midst of all the madness. We need to give it some attention by trimming it and the bushes under it bit so it will grow taller and healthier.
3 // To make everything pop, we’re going to excavate, lay down landscaping fabric and add a layer of black mulch. This is probably the thing we’re most excited about because we think it’s going to make a big difference.
4 // To define the mulch bed, we’re going to line it with landscaping edging – something really simple like this. Like the mulch, we’re thinking this will make a big difference looks-wise and also help keep the mulch where it’s supposed to be.
5 // Next to the mulch bed, we’re going to add a small bed of pea gravel in front of the door to the crawl space (I call it the Keebler Elf door). This will be less dirty than crawling through mulch and easier on the knees than pavers.
6 // Speaking of the Keebler Elf door, the door needs some help. Right now, it’s just a piece of metal leaning against the crawl space opening. It needs some sanding action, a coat of paint and some sort of handle or latch.
So, how’s that for a baby step plan? We’re going to be tackling this to-do list over the next few days and report back after the weekend to give you all the 411 on how everything went, along with a step-by-step of what we did. Hopefully, we won’t have to rip everything out and start over. We’re not expecting the end result to look like Yard Crashers pulled up and made it awesome, but anything will be an improvement, that’s for sure. Sasquatch, out.