Category Archives: backyard

Another Paint Transformation

Last week I finally got around to painting the side of our neighbor’s shed that faces our backyard, and it made a huge difference in the look and feel of the yard.  I’m happy I got it done last week when it was in the 90s… this week the temperatures are around 105 degrees and I have been happy to stay indoors all day!  It’s nice to see the new green shed when I take Kitty outside and when I water the plants(some of which are having a tough time), though.

Sometimes I’m not as good at remembering to take “before” photos as I should be so I had to search around for some photos of the shed pre-painting.

This one was from when I was building the garden in the back, and you can see that the shed is in pretty bad shape.

It took me awhile to scrape and prime the surface but the old paint did come off really easily.

I was surprised that I was even able to paint the wood in some areas because there was so much rot.  At least the new coats of paint will help protect the wood from bad weather and prevent further rotting.

Here is the finished result.   I used the paint that I had leftover from painting our old house, which was great because it was FREE and I really like the color.   :)

I’d love to put some trellises up in front of the wall for vines to grow on, maybe clematis?  I think purple clematis would look great against the green shed, but that might have to wait for next spring.  I can dream for now…

It seems like the painting never ends at our house so tomorrow I’ll have the hallway finished and ready to post.  A little paint definitely makes a big difference!

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The Grass is Always Greener…

In the springtime!  We finally have some grass in our backyard, and it is a beautiful bright green.  It’s hard to wait for these little sprigs to grow, but it seems like lately (with all the rain) they get noticeably taller by the hour.  I can’t wait until it all fills in and we can have a nice grassy area for our puppy and for grilling.

Here is the before pic of the backyard with no grass, well at least very little.

And here is our progress after 10 days.

Hmmm… well that actually looks like some sad progress.  I would have to say it looks much more exciting in person.  Maybe let’s try a close-up.

Another exciting change since last week is our new faucet that we had the plumber put in.  All of our faucets are along the driveway, which seems about a million miles away from where they need to be.  We had to get 2 100 feet hoses- one to reach the backyard and one for the front yard.  Putting in a new faucet cost about $150, but I think it was worth every penny because the hose constantly getting tangled was taking years off my life.

Since the grass isn’t such a dramatic change, I thought I would include some other pics in this post from our old house.  I drove by this week, and I felt a little sad seeing all the plants that I put in last summer.  The new owners weren’t home so that meant I could snap away with my camera.  I didn’t really want to get out of the car so these are all drive-by shots, but I thought the garden was looking pretty good.

Here is our previous house when I started working on it.

And then the paint job nearly finished.

These photos are from a couple of days ago.  I put in the garden beds last summer after finishing all the painting, and they came back really nicely this spring.  I hope the new people are enjoying it!

It makes me miss being able to walk into a house that isn’t “under construction”, but I just have to keep in mind that someday this house will be finished too and then we can kick back and enjoy our hard work.

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Backyard Garden

The garden is done (at least until I buy more plants), the dirt is half gone, and I am pooped out!   I planted the last couple of plants this morning, and took some pictures of the finished product.  The backyard definitely looks 100x better, but I don’t know if that’s saying much because it was probably about a 1 on a 1-10 scale before the garden.

So here are some the plants I put in:

some astilbe and bright green sedum (suggested by my mom) which look really nice together and some baby coreopsus – i think that’s what is was called.  They are just babies right now but will grow really quickly.

A couple of hydrangeas called “blushing bride” that will have really pretty light pink/cream colored flowers.  This one is just starting to get some flowers on it.

I thought these rhodendrons were really pretty, and they will have tons of flowers next spring and stay green all year long.

Here is the somewhat finished garden… it’s still a little empty but will fill in as the summer goes on.  I planted a bunch of hostas (just the roots) that should come up in the next couple of weeks.  I don’t know how well it will work, but I thought it was worth a try!

The roots look a little creepy… but that’s how they came out of the bag.

I have one final photo from our front yard of our rose bush that’s blooming.  It has so many bright pink blooms that I just had to include it with the gardening theme.

Hope you’re all enjoying the beautiful spring weather!

ps  the picture at the top is one of our peony buds!  they are about to pop open, but i thought it was so cool to see all the layers that will be petals in a couple of days.

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A Dent in the Dirt Pile

Today I learned a valuable lesson about having dirt delivered… 10 cubic yards is WAY too much for one person to handle.  I don’t know why I thought this was a good amount or the amount that I needed, but apparently I did and it showed up in a LARGE dump truck.  The guy backed it all the way up in the driveway, which is long and skinny and did I mention very narrow.  I wish I had a picture of this dump truck with about 2 inches of space on either side- and he backed that thing up like it was a toothpick.

Okay, so he dumps this thing and it comes crashing down, and I had a sinking feeling that I went a little crazy.  Here is the pile or mountain (I like mountain)…

I worked on this thing all day, filled the back bed, covered the yard with dirt (for the new grass), and filled some pots, and I think we still have more than half of it left.  I also have some nice aches to go along with the new beautiful garden.

After taking in the dirt pile, I decided to go out in search of plants to fill the space.  This is my first stop on my rounds of picking out plants… I got two creamy white hydrangeas and one oakleaf hydrangea (it’s the picture at the top of the post).

Here are a couple more of the plants I bought- some sedum and liriope.

The last picture is my short planning session of what will go where.

Plants- check

dirt- check check

wheelbarrow- check, almost had to tie it to the car, but i made it fit.

soaker hose- half of a check because I bought one and buried it in the garden dirt and then sliced it open with the shovel during planting.

Kitty ready to tear up things up and cause damage- check.

I’m going to have to save the finished pictures for tomorrow morning because the ones I took didn’t come out very well.  The light was coming through the trees at a strange angle, and you can’t see the plants.  I think I’ll retake them in the morning when the light is coming from the other direction so check back in the am.  Maybe I’ll get a couple more of the small ones in my then too!

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Garden Prep

I decided to get started on the gardening while the weather is cooperating and the days are beautiful.  We’ve been having temperatures in the 60s and 70s with sunny skies so this is the perfect time, and it won’t be this way for long in Oklahoma.  Before I started the plans, I went out around the neighborhood in search of some inspiration so the tulips above and the garden pics below are from my walk with Kitty.  I felt a little weird taking pictures of people’s yards, but hopefully they assumed it was because I liked the yard and not because I was scouting out the house for other reasons…

I really like the tulip colors of the yard above, and I haven’t seen that combination very often- so pretty!  They just had a really nice yard in general, and the next picture is from the other side of the same house.

These are my Favorite flower ever, with a capitol F!  I love Peonies, and this yard had tons of light pink ones in full bloom.  We have three of these plants in our front yard that somehow survived the destructive gardening of the past owner, and I can’t wait for ours to bloom…

Here’s the full view from the street- our grass will never be that green!


I wanted to start off with all these beauties, but now that I’m thinking about it, ours might look a little boring after all that color.  You just have to use your imagination with these pics since it’s the beginning of the process.  The first picture is how it all started… with a pile of buried rocks.  I wanted to get rid of these, and then I had an idea that would save me some work and some money.

So I dug out the edge of the garden

and proceeded to stick the dug-up pieces of concrete into the ground as an edge to the soon-to-be garden bed.   This was the finished result-

Now I just need to fill it in with some nice compost and planting dirt, and it will be set.  I drew up a plan for the backyard with lots of hydrangeas and rhodendrons, and I’m ready to make a shopping list!

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Filed under backyard, cement rocks, garden inspiration, peony, plant shopping, tulip