Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Backyard Renovation: Complete!

Our backyard renovation project is finally complete.

After the plants were planted, the last piece was laying the sod. The guys brought in rolls and rolls of grass and cut it to the mold of the new yard. 

The end result was a beautiful carpet of green:

I love how the grass now flows throughout the yard and my eyes keep moving all around each different area of the property.

We added some lights near the steps and the seating area, as well as soft lights looking up into the Crape Myrtle and River Birch trees. At night, it is simply magical.

It's hard to believe this is the same backyard we had a few months ago!

Remember how it looked this spring?: 

 And how about the wooded, barely useable space under the canopy of trees?:


Or the steep slopes, overgrown shrubs and moss covered rocky soil?:


I couldn't be happier with the end result of our backyard. I absolutely love it. It's so peaceful, beautiful and will provide me with endless hours of enjoyment for years to come!

Many thanks to the team over at Bayview Landscape Architecture who helped make this all possible. 

See the progression here:
Part 1: Tree Removal
Part 2: Retaining Wall
Part 3: The Fence
Part 5: Seating Area

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Backyard Renovation Part 6: Planting the Plants

Well, Hurricane Sandy has come and gone and thankfully we had removed all those trees before the storm! We were luckier than most in the area, sustaining minimal damage to the backyard. Although we did lose power for almost two weeks. 

With all that behind us now, we can focus on finishing up the backyard project. The week before the storm, the plants were brought in and incorporated into the landscape. I've never been so excited than when I saw a truckload of plants pull up in front of my house!

I enjoyed working with my landscape architect on choosing and placing some of the plants. I wanted evergreens in certain areas, some plants with fall color, some with spring blooms and then some purely because I liked them!

As each plant went in, the backyard suddenly transformed into a place that filled the senses. Wonderful smells, textures and a softness to the landscape appeared.

Behind the decorative wall (which was there all along, but now seems to take center stage) is a gorgeous Crape Myrtle. I just love the fall color on it and next year the late summer blooms will be lovely. I wanted to keep many of the plants above this wall low so that I could see over them onto the lawn and watch the kids playing or just let my eyes continue their gaze to the back of the property.

Along the side and to the back, we planted Cryptomeria trees, Cherry Laurel and Rhododendron for evergreen privacy. Hydrangeas, Ilex and Liriope dot the area in front of the old Oak tree.

This is the view from the seating area. The fence makes such an attractive backdrop to the plants and the surrounding trees. Along the fence are Clethra, Viburnum, Skip Laurel, Holly, Variegated Weigela, Red-twig Dogwood, Nandina and Rhododendron. Behind the fence, a new River Birch tree peeks through.

 Hydrangeas, Nandina and dwarf rose bushes accent the lower wall.

Now that the plants are in, I'm anxious to see what it looks like when the sod is laid. Then, it will finally look like a real backyard!