Straightening out the Backyard

I think this is the first time I’ll be showing you before and after pictures where the before pictures look substantially better than the after.  I guess the good news is that the “after” pictures are just progress pictures and soon enough the real after will look much better than the before.

This is what our backyard looked like when we placed an offer on the house.  The yard ends just past those hedges (the pride of India is in the greenbelt, not in our yard).
Backyard - Before from Back Door 2

Here’s the view from the other side.  Lush, but crowded, making the back yard feel tiny. (That giant shed doesn’t help anything either…)
Backyard - Before from Greenbelt

This weekend we put our family visiting from overseas to work and they helped us pull out the last of the hedges, take apart the stone flower beds, build a new bed along the western fence line, and level out some low spots on the patio.

Here’s the bed as seen through an upstairs window (ignore the dirt for now).

Backyard - New Bed from Inside
Here’s the view from the green belt.  There’s obviously plenty still to be done, such as getting that shed out of there and replacing it with a significantly smaller one, fencing in the yard, and then filling in the planter bed. Eventually we’ll also build some free-standing vegetable garden beds along the fence on the eastern side and add a patio dining set.

From this angle you can also see why we need that bed.  Our yard sits about a foot lower than our neighbors, and to avoid a substantial slope in our yard, we had to create a step down. The fence will sit on the upper level and the garden bed will minimize the height difference between the yards.

Backyard - New Bed from Greenbelt

As much as I’d love to fill up this garden bed with day lilies (like the ones we have blooming in the front yard), I also like that the bed serves as extra seating, so perhaps something a little less unruly would work better.  Whatever we decided on, it will have to wait until we have the fence up.

Backyard - New Bed from Back Door

Oh and here’s a shot of our newly leveled patio.  Thanks to my cousin for removing the sunken stones and adding the dirt necessary to straighten things out.  Hopefully this solves the standing water puddles we’ve been dealing with after the rain. We’ll be adding some river rocks in the dirt beds on either side of the door (under the water meter and under the drain pipe).

Backyard - Leveled PatioDid you trick any relatives into doing hard labor this weekend?

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One thought on “Straightening out the Backyard

  1. I WISH I had some visiting relatives to put to work! 😉 Can’t wait to see it all come together (and re: Pride of India….I was all, “we have one of those, but we call it a crape myrtle.” then I looked it up, and they’re the same thing. learn something new every day, they say :))

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