I love spending time outdoors, especially sipping some cold iced tea on the deck and looking at the beautiful landscape.  This house had no landscaping, just one big bush!  At first I thought that was a bad thing, but actually, it turned out to be a blessing because I pretty much had a blank slate to work with and didn’t have to re-do anyone else’s attempt at it.  Below is a before photo of the back yard.  It’s not a big yard, but it’s wide.  The chain link fence is in the photos but it is no longer there.  I replaced it with a black iron fence (so ignore the chain link – it’s hideous!)  I’ll update this summer of 2020 once everything is in full bloom in July.

My plan was to keep the bush but trim it back, and start my landscaping plan from there.

This would end up being my tulip garden area.  I planted some hostas to border the tulips.  To create my border and to keep the mulch in, I used paver border material with spikes to keep in in place.  It’s stronger than the typical landscape border rolls out there and about the same price.  They come in five foot lengths and are very strong.  I continued working my way to the left of the bush and added a flowering tree and some more perennials across the width of the yard.

You can see it shaping up here. I planted a pink dogwood tree and I think I will add a couple more of them next year.

It was a gloomy day but I kept pushing on!

This whole project took a few weeks.  I wanted to take my time and get it right.  Once the left side of the bush was completed, I worked my way to the right side.  I added paver borders and landscape fabric as I moved to the right.  Again, ignore the ugly chain link fence, it’s gone now.

I’ve always had a pond for multiple reasons!  They are beautiful to look at, especially at night when they are lit up and they sound relaxing.  My daughter loves to add a goldfish or two as well.  This area was perfect for the pond.  The hole took me about three days to dig out, I was in no hurry so I just dug a little at a time.  These must be level so that the waterline appears level once its filled up.  I added these two pink knock out rose bushes first so that I had a better idea of how far out to start digging.  I got my concrete bench out as well so I could estimate where it would go.   I’m sure my neighbors (who I hadn’t met yet) probably were thinking, this girl is crazy!  They were yet to see what my plan was later in the summer!

I added the preformed pond to the hole and placed the bench to the right of it (eventually I moved the bench to the left side).  As you can see, there is a little fountain in the pond with underwater lights, of course!  🙂

Now I could create the footprint of the space by continuing my paver border and adding landscape fabric.  One thing I hate to do is pull weeds!  You can see my waterfall pump is ready to go in and I’d be collecting flat stones to line the pond for a more natural feel.

By adding the natural stone, I was able to create a walkway or path around the pond and up to the bench.  Curves are you friend when landscaping.

I added a hibiscus tree, lillys and some ornamental grasses.  I added landscape lights throughout and the entire area is magical at night time!

And here is the before and after!  It will continue to be a work in progress each year to come.

I’ll update more photos this summer of 2020!  If you’re considering doing your own landscaping, just get right in there and take your time.  Have fun with it and enjoy the fruits (or flowers) of your labor!

I hope you are inspired!

Jeanne Marie – The Practical Fanatic