Making the Garden Beds

For a moment, let’s escape the wonderful world of landscaping and delve into some hardscaping.

Unlike it’s name – it’s not really that hard.  Well…technically it is…but it isn’t.  It’s easy to do…but it’s hard as in rigid…why has this turned into definition time?!  Is my nerdy showing?

So the bit of the front beds that required some hardscaping was next to the mailbox surrounding our drain.  We had already marked where the pavers needed to go with that curved board…but in the end that’s not what happened.  Picking pavers was a difficult thing to do.  Here’s why…

  • we have a faux paver driveway (as in it’s stamped concrete to make it look like pavers but it’s not really pavers – it’s just concrete)
  • our driveway is stained orangeish red at the beginning and then also later around the circle drive – the rest of the driveway is normal concrete color – gray.
  • our mailbox is faux stacked stone in gray
  • this drainage area also needed to encroach onto our neighbors yard since that is where the lowest points are for rainwater and they have a light gray stone bed on the other side of their driveway (I think it’s where they put their trash can)

So we had several different materials in the general area…and two property owners to make happy…and a shared budget.  So in the end, the guys decided that these cheap gray pavers (they were roughly 5″x5″) would tie everything together.  They are the same square shape as our faux driveway pavers…and the same color scheme as the mailbox, the neighbor’s driveway and the neighbor’s trash landing.

The guys laid them to be straight with the edge of the drain…

chiseling away at any extra concrete base of the mailbox or the road to fit in each paver.

In the end, it looked like this:

Let me just say that I’m not the hugest fan of it aesthetically.  I wish it was fully pavered where the original line was designated…but we can’t really tell our neighbor’s how to finish their side.  If that were possible – we would probably get a few suggestions of our own from the neighboring community – apparently these days, people take down their Christmas decorations before March hits :)

Oh and note that we did longer pavers tilted up on the far end of the drainage area so that all the water would really be channeled into the drain.

Here’s a sneak peek on the other side:

Yes, I had to lay all the landscaping fabric (which is weirdly theraputic to me) before mulching…

I love cutting out around the plants and all the utility stuff.  That’s weird I know.

But what else can you expect from me?  (why yes, this is a hip thrust for weed blocker)

A few days later, we officially were cleaning up our finished front beds…

But before I jump into that whole before & after post, I wanted to show ya what we did with our extra rocks….the rocks from the drainage ditch.

Look past the fine piece of you-know-what in the foreground and beyond the lawn mower….there’s a bunch of bushes and there is a clearing tucked inside.  like a hidden garden…except it’s just a clearing :)

Earlier last year we planted Will’s tree near the clearing,

you can see how the tree is marking the edge of the garden bed…

So inside the clearing, we laid some more weed blocker (more thrusting included) and the extra stones from the ditch…

We also dug up all the buried bricks and started to make an edge boundary (we later nixed it because it didn’t look right with the rest of the yard).

Oh and just so you can get your bearings, there is the little vegetable garden on the side yard…

All that work and no happy ending.  I know.  I know.  It’s coming.  IT’S COMING!  (that’s what she said)

So there you have it folks.  And yes, it is weird to talk about the grass & landscaping & hardscaping when I have sand between my toes :) Oh and thanks for the recommendations yesterday - we are definitely squeezing as much in as we possibly can – and your suggestions REALLY helped.

Back to the yard – have you guys been working outside on your spring plantings lately?  Been putting anything in the ground?  Any hardscaping?  Or easyscaping?




  1. says

    I think there are more pics of your boyfriends tush then his face. Thanks for that btw…i have actually seen people pin pics of his tush for a project followed with complimentary comments.

  2. says

    Katie! Everything looks so nice! :) I’m impressed that you and your neighbor get along so well and were willing to go halvsies on a project.

    I also love where you guys put the extra rocks. I can definitely see a little table and chairs out there, or a porch swing (hung from a wood frame), or a big pot of something-or-other in the middle of it all! You guys definitely have an eye for design inside and out.

  3. says

    Oh, I HATE landscaping, but love the end results, it’s always rewarding. Can’t wait to see the reveal!
    I have a Odd question, what type of jeans does your boyfriend wear that give him such a nice rumpus? I mean, it’s probably not just the jeans, but they are a nice canvas for it. Is this weird? Me talking about your hubs backside? I just wanted to get some new jeans for my hubs and needed suggestions!
    Enjoy your vaca!

  4. says

    All that digging and moving rocks must be a killer workout, but I think it will look great! I love new garden beds and spring is the best time to get at it. Give new plants tons of water and warm weather to put in roots and grow.

  5. says

    Last spring we dug up EVERYTHING that the previous owner has planted. He is only a year older than us but this place was so over-landscaped and we thought It looked like old people. This included thousands of dollars worth of weed fabric which we swear is the devils invention. We found hundreds of rodent tunnels under it!!! We’re still in the process of planting the big trees before we fill in with the fun stuff (smaller plants and flowers). I can’t wait but it’s all do expensive do we have to pace ourselves.

  6. Rosalie says

    This week we had two 85 foot hemlock trees taken down in our backyard. We cant believe how much more light we are getting on our deck. Next, were going to rent a stump grinder to get the stump out, and then we can replace a 20 year old rotting fence.
    We live in seattle, and its been sunny for 2 days, so the windows also got cleaned and some gardening occurred, before the rain returns on monday…

    • Sami S says

      A DIY trick for removing stumps…. light some charcoal and cover the top of the stump. The charcoal will work its magic and VIOLA! no more stump. It does take a minute (okay it took mine like five days), but it saved us tons of mulah (and no ruts in our yard to roll out).

  7. says

    Weird question:
    I thought you cut your hair??? Were these taken before the haircut? Or does your hair grown insanely fast? Or did I imagine the hair cut? :)

    By the way, your yard looks fantastic!

    • says

      Yup – I mentioned before that these were taken before my sister’s wedding – back in September. I probably should have mentioned it again :)
      xo – kb

  8. says

    I feel like we’re setting up for a strange Blog-Tarantino ending ;)

    I really love the small garden where Will’s tree is. I love your whole ginormous yard! So much space, I bet it’s really hard to get things planned with just that much space. I mean, you do have two manly men helping you out, so maybe it’s not that bad? Hehe.

    I plan on starting the seedlings for my edible garden this week! I figured I’d start small, and if they survive, I’ll test my black thumb out on some larger, out doorsy plants. Fingers crossed for plant survival…

  9. Kristi says

    Random question…is that a Bryan College T-shirt you are wearing!? Oh, and your landscaping looks awesome =)

  10. Tabitha says

    OMG Katie – I’m dying over here… the hip thrusting made me LOL. I seriously laughed for 5 minutes. Thank you for that! I love your randomness, it makes me happy!

  11. Melissa says

    Our men have similar backsides. Every time I see him bend over I do a “mhmmm” and creep him out ;-) Can’t keep my hands off of it!

    xoxo Melissa

  12. says

    You’re giving me inspiration to tackle our poison ivy ridden back yard (it’s the only thing I can grow) and drainage issues. Nice! Glad to see I’m not the only one who “gets into her work” from a dance-ology perspective! :)

  13. says

    No landscaping for us just yet. We cleaned up the flower bed though. We will be planting some flowers probably mid-April just to make sure we don’t have another freeze.

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