Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Front Yard Makeover

In March we tackled a rather big home project. We decided to give our front yard a makeover. When we bought the house, the yard had been so neglected that we just took a tiller to the flower beds to tackle all of the weeds that were there.

We kept the larger bushes, but they were overgrown and had 'bald spots' of growth because of some of what we took out. So, six years later we decided to star all over. We removed every plant except the roses and most trees.

I hired a landscaping company to do the majority of the work. They cut the sod, clear the plants, adjusted sprinkler zones, laid out drip irrigation, placed weed barrier and added the rocks. All I had to do was pick which plants we were going to add, buy them and plan them.

It doesn't seem that the planting would be a lot of work, but it was! I hired a landscape architect to advise me on what plants to add in my landscape and he went overboard with the number of plants he would add. In reviewing his recommendations, not only I cut back the total plants to 1/3 of what he had suggested but I also had to reconsider his recommendations on placement. It took hours of work on my park to re-design the landscape and to search for plant suppliers that had what I needed this early in the season at a price I was willing to pay.

I had to drive to 5 different nurseries located all across the valley to buy 100+ plants. The white weeping spruce was the hardest to find.

We decided to increase the size of rocks we placed so that they would be easily blown with a leaf blower without moving them out of place. The larger size rock meant we had to buy significantly more of it to cover the weed barrier. It took twice as much rock than what we had budgeted for, but I am so pleased with our decision.

The people who did our curbing were not the most personable, but they were quick, efficient and affordable so I can't complain about their work.

We debated a lot whether to spend the money to install landscape lighting. It would raise the cost of our budget by 20% between labor and materials. Honestly, I am glad we did it. My yard looks better after making these changes, but it looks amazing at night with the lights illuminating the house, paths and trees. I would highly recommend installing low voltage lights to any landscape.

The best part is how much time I am saving taking care of the yard. I no longer have to edge the park-strip and along the driveway and RV site. It has cut the time in half!