I’ve already posted about our backyard project which was — until today — still a work in progress. I am happy to report that, as of this afternoon, we’ve finished our composting and mulching and have planted all the plants we hoped to get in the ground this season.
Over the past week, we also dug the weeds out of the back half of the yard, laid a path to the back gate using pavers that were on the property, removed a large weed tree, repaired the gate so it would open and close, and leveled the soil in the back area.
Our plan is to let the mulch sit for a season or two in order to block any new weeds from coming up, while at the same time allowing nutrients from the compost and mulch to make the soil more fertile. At some point, we will enter into phase two of our plan, which is to add azaleas, shade-loving grasses, astilbe and a small Japanese maple — and of course more hosta.
Here are a few before and after photos, taken from similar angles. Keep in mind that my “before” photos were actually taken after I’d already had a first pass at clearing out the yard. It actually looked much scarier before that first pass.
:: Casting a Long Shadow
Here’s a before photo of the yard from the vantage point of the back porch. I am making a weird shadow and, unfortunately, I’ve captured Hayden in the act of peeing. (Sorry, Hayden!) Note the fence to the right. That appeared to be some kind of dog run or chicken coop. We’re not certain exactly what it was, but it’s gone now.
:: Watch Your Step
Here is an after photo from the same angle. So much better. Our neighbors from two doors down even came over to show their appreciation for all the work we’re doing. They confirmed that the home’s landscape hadn’t been maintained for years — which was no surprise, given how it looked when we moved in.
:: Weed Army
This before photo shows the yard from the vantage point of the far side.
:: Spaced Out
Now we have a backyard we can feel good about. My husband likes it so much he’s started referring to it as his new office. He takes a magazine or his laptop outside, kicks back in an Adirondack chair and soaks up the sun (which is a good thing, since his vitamin D level recently came in at 9 ng/mL).
:: Weeds As High As an Elephant’s Eye
Broken and weedy and trashed, oh my! I wish we could have snapped our fingers and made this area all better, but unfortunately digging, lifting, leveling, shoveling and amending were all required.
I would do a happy-dance in the new yard if it wouldn’t mess the mulch up.
That’s it for my before and after photos, but I do have two more “afters” to share. Before I do so, I want to note that not a single chemical — organic or synthetic — was used in the making of this backyard space. We dug everything out by hand, and we’ll keep at it as new weeds pop up. At some point, I might try vinegar on unwanted seedlings, but thus far the old-fashioned method of hand-digging has worked well, so I might stick with that.
OK. Here are the last two photos.
:: Hot Hosta
:: This Yard Is Beebs-Approved