Friday, July 1, 2022

A Happy Look At What Has Been Keeping Me Busy


If you follow my other blog you are aware that my time lately has been preoccupied with a huge landscaping project.  I am literally starting from scratch after having done a complete demo on my entire front and back yards in the early spring of 2021.  Then a life altering event changed my plans last year and the project was put on hold.  Once I retired this year my focus was to get the project back on board and that is exactly what I've done.  On May 15th I was able to get started and I'm so pleased with the progress I've been making.


We are blessed with three large and lovely trees in our yard that provide us with a lot of shade.  Not so conducive to growing a lawn however and Lord knows I have tried.  No amount of watering, fertilizing or reseeding seemed to help.  Our soil was terrible too and the trees blocked out the sun and dropped leaves on the ground which choked out what struggled to grow.  We would get a couple months of green grass in the spring and then it would dry up and start to die off looking pathetic.  I decided to take it all out and with the help of our chickens they finished up what I could not last year.  With no more weeds or grass in the yard I started off with a nice clean slate.  I had a vision for lots of curving flowerbeds planted with green shrubs, flowering shrubs and perennials.  Easy to care for and maintain, low water use and of course it had to be beautiful.


I began the process by removing all of the black vinyl lawn edging and restructuring the beds.  Instead of the lawn edging I bordered all of my flowerbeds with rocks we already had in our yard and I also redid our pond area in the process.  I added my homemade compost from the bin in the back yard and turned the soil well before raking it out and then planting.  The plants and shrubs seem to love their new home and so far (knock on wood) everything seems to be doing really well.


We moved our fence because our largest tree was beginning to push it over.  I rebuilt it on the other side extending our front yard  bit and creating a new flowerbed in the process.  Then I installed a new lawn.  Not just any lawn, but one that will not require water, fertilizer, weed control or mowing.  We absolutely love it!


Our driveway has an extra gravel parking area that runs alongside.  The weeds were taking over and the gravel was a bit thin.  It looked pretty ugly.  At the time I installed this parking area I had limited funds and did the best I could with what I had to work with.  Three truckloads of FREE gravel from a Facebook Marketplace ad and a lot of sweat and elbow grease over three days transformed this area into exactly what I had always envisioned.  I removed the weeds, laid the gravel on thick and added yet another flowerbed.


The additional flowerbed received eight full five gallon buckets of compost from the backyard bin and I turned the soil over before raking it smooth.  It is ready for planting a shrub and some plants I got from Home Depot with a gift card.  Once this bed was complete I was able to begin working on the backyard next to our deck.


There was a nice sized area surrounding our pear tree and in the past I haven't done much with it until now.  I began by working in a lot of compost into the soil and I wanted to give it a rock border too, just like the others.  By this time I had run low on rocks but a Facebook Marketplace ad took care of that for me and I was able to pick up a load of FREE landscape rocks to keep this project going.  This bed is going to be home to some blueberry bushes and possibly some strawberry plants next spring.  I added one shrub at the end of the bed that can be seen from the front yard, but for now the rest of it will need to wait.


I continued the flowerbed along the side of our house in the front yard around the corner and into the back yard next to the deck making it one long meandering bed which also includes our pond.  I even gussied up the drainage area where the downspout is.  I mean, why not?  Then I continued my way into the backyard by removing the weeds and reinstalling some pavers in front of the deck steps.  Then I was able to refresh the gravel in that area with what I had left from the driveway project.  The small flowerbed on the other side of the deck got a refresh as well.  Now to figure out what I want to plant there.


Because I planted a garden this year the rest of the back yard will not be finished right away.  I have grand plans however for a completely new garden area and compost bin, but that will need to wait until the current garden is harvested and I'm able to procure the supplies I need for this part of the project.  I hope you enjoyed this tour of my home improvement projects.  There are loads of other projects for me to work on, so with that said, I better get back to work!



  1. It looks amazing, and just incredible that you could do it on a small budget!

  2. Where are your chickies? Is Edith and company no longer around?

    (Yes, this does look really nice.) You have had some tough experiences lately, with your friend's death and your daughter leaving home. Don't push yourself too much, girl... these can really be difficult to deal with.

    1. Oh, my chickies are still very much present and accounted for! Love those ladies. :o)

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you Kathy. I am having so much fun with this project.


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