Well, I have huge plans for the backyard and I’m going to attempt to organize those ideas here.
First up is the biggest investment and challenge: painting the house. While installing the new windows I put in new frames and painted them white so I’m going dark with the paneling. I’ve tested a few different shades of gray and chose Asphalt Gray:
I did purchase Behr as shown above but in exterior flat paint. There are 10 gallons hanging out in my garage and I’ll be tinting them a few gallons at a time and mixing them in a 5-gallon bucket to ensure there are fewer color variations.
The second biggest project is a brand new build in the northeast corner. I’ll be removing this patio:
All of these bricks are going to be removed and the ground leveled again. Then I’m going to cement in some posts and build a pergola like this:
I won’t be building in those benches however, because I’d like to hang my hammock between the far left and far right posts instead.
I’ve purchased 2 amethyst falls wisteria which are growing in pots to eventually grow up the posts and hang down like such:
Until I can begin pergola construction I’ll be growing the wisteria in pots alongside some lantana and hibiscus plants.
The third big project is planting a new tree in the back yard, since all I’ve done since moving in is remove trees. I’m leaning toward a pink crepe myrtle like this one:
While it doesn’t seem like a big task there’s a lot of prep work. Experts recommend planting in the Fall so I have some time before digging a big hole for the tree root. Since I’ll be laying down new garden paths and planting a tree, I want to remove the existing sprinklers so I don’t run into any issues digging. That is tentatively slated for early July so I can take out the stone and brick pathways which are cracked, buried in dirt and/or slope toward the house.
For paths from the back door to the pergola I’d like a simple path like this one:
Since I will attempt to replant grass around the paths, it makes sense to keep them low and flush to the ground. Also, having a space for the dogs to walk will keep the middle of my yard from dying thanks to the regular stampede of paws.
While I haven’t decided how I want the patio off the back door to look, I’m liking this path for the wider walkway to the side yard:
I’ll probably do mine in herringbone but I will surround the edges with river rock.
The guest room window is the only one that I can conceivably decorate since all the other windows are poorly placed. There I’d like to have gravel right up to the foundation and build a nice, big window box like this one:
The side yard gutters also drain in this corner so I would like to build a rain barrel and place it on the stone pavers I remove from the corner patio (reduce, reuse, recycle).
Smaller projects include cleaning up the side yard proper which tends to get over run with grass clippings, spider webs and debris. Most of this space will remain the same after I paint the siding and trim back the plants.
The side yard will have some projects like cleaning up the gas grill, emptying all the good dirt from my compost bin and possibly re-using the white trellis from my patio cover in the front yard to allow the lantana to grow up the fence.
Finally, I have some “just for fun” projects like adding plants to some old bird cages I have:
and taking the old silver strainer and turning it into a bright beautiful planter:
I took out the bay window from the kitchen and it’s hanging out on the side yard until I can mount it with some 2x4s and hang it on the fence. I’m considering it right above the raised garden beds or in the backyard under the pergola.
Aside from hanging the new hammock I don’t have much need for seating since I bought, stained and assembled new adirondack chairs this month and have 2 older ones that got a fresh coat of paint this summer.
The front yard is a whole other story so this summer, for Operation Backyard Oasis, I’m just focusing on the space behind the fence.
Oh, and painting the whole house.