When we first moved into our house a little over a year ago in February 2019, it was of course Winter, and so I had on rose colored glasses and wasn’t really all that concerned with the state of the back yard…because all yards look pretty bad in the Winter, right? Haha. It wasn’t even that the back yard was a total eyesore – because it had a lot of greenery (read: JUNGLE!), but soon after getting Willow, we realized just how unusable it was in its current state. Here are some of the listing photos …
The backyard has a pretty steep slope and then at the top, it appeared there was a good bit of flat land, but it was hard to tell due to ALL the overgrown bushes, trees, etc. There was also a large, 40 year old shed that we had no use for taking up a LOT of space.
Honestly, in the beginning, it was hard for me to even envision what it could be, because it was just overwhelming. We decided early on to hire this wonderful man, Gus, who mows a lot of the yards in our neighborhood, to mow our grass because Luke was working almost every Saturday and it was becoming too much of a chore to keep up with. We had reached out to a few larger landscaping companies to see their thoughts on the back yard, and our first quote was $18,000 (cue me basically falling over dead) and the second was around $15,000. One day, Gus spent some extra time with us to try and help us make a plan for how we could start to see some of the potential in our back yard and we decided to trust him with the heavy lifting of clearing all of the junk and overgrowth and leveling the top so that we could see its full potential. He has been so wonderful to work with from the start and did it for a FRACTION(!!!) of the cost of what the other guys quoted us.
So, in November 2019, about 9 months after moving in, Gus and his guys started on our back yard and it was definitely one of those situations where it got a WHOLE LOT worse before it started getting better
By the end of November, everything was cleared and it was pure mud. Then we had about the rainiest winter I can ever remember, which made it even more muddy. We didn’t let Willow in the back yard for over 4 months and just prayed that come Spring, we would see some life. I think the rainy Winter turned out to be a blessing, because the grass seed starting to really come in and flourish in February and March.
There are still some sparse spots right now that we will need to reseed, but the progress is so encouraging! We now have lots of open space, Willow has been having the time of her life running around the backyard and loves that it is a sloped terrain. We can see the potential and have enough flat space for a fire pit and one day a playset.
During this quarantine, one of the many blessings has been the extra time on the weekends to work in the yard – so then came the grunt labor for Luke and I. Luke chopped down a lot of small trees along the back of the property line to clean it up and then we planted 30+ small privet hedges so that eventually (several years from now), we will have a neat privacy hedge to hide the ivy overgrowth and hopefully just give some structure to our property line.
Gus put pine straw around all of our trees, which made a huge difference, and then I hand picked every weed and in the front and back beds. We planted a few new bushes in the front, fertilized and re-mulched. We have some new Spring planters and we planted 6 hydrangeas and two rose bushes in the back.
We still have a ways to go, but are so excited about how far we have come! Can’t wait to see how this yard continues to mature over the years!