Busy worker bee

I’ve been busy working outside the past few evenings (instead of inside blogging where I’d prefer to be). Manual labor/physical activity/blisters-and-back-pain isn’t my thing, but the yard isn’t going to pre-landscape itself. I say “pre” because we’ve not even planted anything yet. My dad and I have slowly been moving dirt from under the deck to the front of the house in preparation of future landscaping.

Here’s a before picture (from the time I entered a contest):

And here’s the progress we’ve made so far:

Yeah, it doesn’t look like much, but it’s been A LOT of work. And it turns out I’m going to have to learn to love shrubs because the planter box I want won’t be feasible since the siding slopes at the end. And since there will be no planter box, there needs to be more dirt in its place. I guess I could have pushed the issue and had Dad remove some of the siding, but with him you have to pick your battles…

Here’s a before picture of the “courtyard” (sounds fancy, huh?):

And here’s an in-progress picture:

It looks like an awesomely big litter box, right? The dirt we are digging out is next to the foundation where pea gravel was poured for drainage purposes. So part of what we are digging up is dirt and part is gravel. Lucky for me, the gravel is easier to shovel than dirt, and I just so happened to want my courtyard filled with gravel anyway.

Here’s a picture of the damage we’ve done under the deck so far:

Eventually we will build a retaining wall and pour a concrete floor so we can use this space as storage for either the grill (ours is still next door at Mom & Dad’s) or our own riding lawn mower in the future (we currently have a communal one that is having a hard time keeping up with 6+ acres).

So what do I plan to do when the dirt is all moved? First of all, plant grass!! It looks like a bunch of hobos live here! Then we will probably plant some shrubs in the front. I’m leaning towards Golden Vicary (but we would buy them cheaply as tiny baby shrubs):

I think the yellowy/lime green color would look good up against our green siding. And I’m a little sentimental towards them because we had them in front of Mom & Dad’s house growing up. I’d also maybe like to work in some Arborvitae to add some height and contrast (and because that’s what makes up the privacy hedge in front of the Irwin Miller house ;)):

I’m all for keeping things looking neat and tidy, so of course we will want to put up some edging in front of the shrubs. I’m liking the looks of this one:

And possibly even this one, just for something different:

I plan on putting these flower pots in the courtyard (please note that there are three symbolizing Chris, Jill, and Jane ;)):

And I recently bought these two new pots (orange one, red one [they were on sale last week at Home Depot])…

… to go with these two that I already had…

… which will all land up somewhere on the porch. I’m thinking I need to have Chris Browning build me some kind of cool plant stand… hmm….

So any ideas on what I should actually plant in these pots next spring? I would like something low maintenance with a lot of color, but it needs to know its role and not be unruly like petunias. I don’t want a jungle on my front porch. Suggestions??

PS. And I still want an orange front door!!

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One Response to Busy worker bee

  1. Looks like you’re well on your way! Can’t wait to see the finished product.

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