Saturday, August 6, 2011

Thriving Garden Path and a Plan for the Back Yard

The side garden is thriving, even in Ohio’s humidity and summer heat. The hydrangeas began blooming a few weeks ago and the bushes are even more prolific than in this photo from a week ago.


hydrangeas 1






I have a couple of metal garden ornaments hanging in the bed with the hydrangeas. This one is a cute dragonfly, painted in green and cream. The rust only adds to the charm, don’t you think?



The bee is in his traditional colors of black and yellow….



Sitting on the bench are a tin watering can and a ginormous grasshopper!



Can’t remember how much I paid for this guy, but he was a yard sale find, too.





mini watering can

This 25¢ can from a yard sale is definitely a mini and purely for show.


mini twig chairT

Tucked under one of the bushes is a recent yard sale find- a miniature twig chair that cost only 50¢. 



Even the creeping Jenny is thriving and spreading. I planted several different ground covers among the stone pavers, but this variety is definitely my favorite.

The back yard renovation begins on Tuesday, if all goes well with the landscaper’s schedule.  It will be one major transformation, let me tell ya! Our lot was a prime candidate for a walk-out basement, but the original homeowner didn’t opt for one. Consequently, we have a very sloped and rolling yard that has been practically unusable for years. We couldn’t even place a table out in the yard because it wouldn’t stay level.   So…..  the yard is receiving a major re-grading and we’ll be adding three patios, plus a water feature and a fire pit. The job is expected to take a minimum of five weeks. I know it will look much worse before it gets better, but the end result should be fantastic! 

To save some labor costs, I pulled up an existing paver patio and my nephew removed a small wood deck off of the kitchen. Both had slowly sunken into the ground over the years and were walking hazards. The paver patio wasn’t a huge job to remove. Heck- a third of the bricks had shifted out of the ground  and  down the hill. so they just needed a little prying. The others had to be dug out and were a little harder to remove. I advertised the bricks on Freecycle and someone came to get them the next day. No removal effort on my part, thank goodness.

The deck was more of an issue. My nephew used his pry bar, a chain saw, and a lot of hard labor to take down that puppy!  And wouldn’t it have been one of the hottest and more humid days of the summer!   He also took down the side privacy fence that has seen many better days.  I helped him bring up a few sections of the rear picket fence. It was rotted to the point that I could just wiggle the posts and pull out the sections. But dragging up that hill was a killer!  Everything got hauled off to the dump in two truck loads- weighing out to over 2 ½ tons when he dropped them off. He must have been dead tired at the end of the day.  I know that I slept well that night!

I’m so anxious to get this hardscaping done. In anticipation of decorating the yard, I even went out to Home Depot this morning to purchase some Adirondack chairs.  I was inspired by a post from Joan@ For The Love of A House,  who had recently posted about the chairs and said that she got them for only $20.

                                                                                                                         adirondack chair


The husband and I had already decided that we wanted this type of chair for the fire pit area and we’d even found a source for them from one of our vendors. The unfinished ones were going to cost us $58 WHOLESALE, while the painted or stained version was going to be $99 WHOLESALE.  But $20 RETAIL sounded even better! 

So I got on the phone and started calling a few Home Depot stores to see who had them in stock. After being told by three different locations that they were sold out, I called one last store. The nice young guy at the Dayton Mall location confirmed that the computer said he should have eight of them in stock. Now, I never put stock into what a computer says, but he even offered to do a physical check of them in the warehouse before I got a chance to ask him to do one. They did have the eight chairs, so I had him hold four of them for me. And to top it all off- they were now $14!  WOO HOO!!! 

Now, they DO have to be put together, and I know that they’re nowhere near the quality of the ones we could buy from our vendor, but I think that for where I want to use them, they will serve their purpose and be well worth the money.

Off to see how hard they are to assemble. Have a great weekend, everyone!



Linking to the following memes next week:

SouthernHospThriftyTreasures-copy_thumb1           nifty thrifty tuesdays        outdoor wed.      sharethelovebutton


wow us wed.                  THT Party Button-2.2          thrifty things friday         vintage inspiration button       french country cottage


Linda@Coastal Charm said...

Sounds like you have a lot going on...looking forward to seeing the outcome. Now what a deal you got on those chairs!!!


Marydon said...

Love your garden but that bench is fabulous, Sue.

Have a great weekend ~

Barbara F. said...

You have been busy, but everything looks great. Love the chairs in the yard and of course the Adirondacks. xo,

Penny @ The Comforts of Home/Lavender Hill Studio said...

I would love to see pictures of the process of your back yard evolving! It sounds like it is going to be wonderful,

Glenda/MidSouth said...

You have really been busy ! You have definitely got a lot of exercise in lately. Great deal on the chairs. Looking forward to seeing the finished project.
Hope you are enjoying your weekend.

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Wow, Sue what a buy on those chairs and I can't wait to see this yard transformation. Sounds wonderful. Wish we could tear our up.

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Sounds like an exciting project Sue, I love fire pits! Great deal on the chairs, hopefully they'll go together in a snap:@)

Jo said...

How well does the creeping jenny hold up to being walked on? WE are looking for something for between our pavers? What a great deal on the chairs!

Miss Char said...

I sure hope we're going to have pictures of the process Sue. Sounds like a wonderful summer project and those chairs were a total bargain. Sitting patiently one state away waiting to see the new digs (get it...digs).

Debby said...

Why, Sue, you are just a BUSY bee.
Actually that sounds like alot of work. It will be beatiful when finished.
I hope this doesn't cut into your thrifting?
I think we should plan something for when the COuntry Living Fair is in town, whatca think?

salmagundi said...

I'm envious - our backyard so needs a renovation. We're talking about it, but the work involved for us 'old folks' can be overwhelming. We'll see! In the meantime, I'll anxiously await yours. Sally

Theresa said...

You've got a great nephew! Your garden looks fabulous, I bet Mr. Sullivan is enjoying it too. I often think about him while I'm looking at your blog. How is he doing now? I have to ask, lol does your grasshoppers legs turn? It looks like his little hind legs are bent in the wrong direction.

I bet your backyard will turn out looking like a million bucks, but for a lot less. Can't wait to start seeing the process.


xinex said...

I love your garden, Sue. It looks so natural which is what I prefer...Christine

Jemsmom said...

Oh Sue!!! I can't wait to see it! It is going to be fabulous and I love the look of adirondack chairs around a fire pit. It is so cozy to me! That twig chair is precious! I would love to curl a newborn up in that and take their picture!!!!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Your backyard renovations sound like they will make the area a wonderful place to entertain and enjoy, Sue! It will be worth all the mess and effort in the process.

What a fabulous bargian on the chairs! WOW! I've always loved Adirondack chairs!

Pam said...

$14.00 - that's amazing. I have two adirondak chairs that I have had for at least ten years and I love them. Very comfy. Have fun with your HUGE yard project. At least there's landscapers with no shirts on to look forward to for the next few weeks!

Crystal Rose Cottage said...

Sue...your side garden is so pretty! I love your metal bees! Sounds like you have a very ambitious project about to start! Very exciting! I am sure it will be beautiful when it is done! Great deal on those adirondack chairs!~Hugs, Patti

mississippi artist said...

The nerve of some people! That is terrible that someone would do that to your flowers. Can't wait to see your new backyard, with all your treasures.

Sylvia said...

Oh just wait till everything is grown and flourishing, it will be a paradise!! Love it all.


Emily said...

All of your hard work is showing off. I love the hydrangeas, one of my favorites. I love your bee and dragonfly, great touches of art in the garden. Its looking great.......All of my flowers have come and gone. Thanks for sharing your lovely garden.

The French Hutch

Linda Makiej said...

These are all great!! Love the little twig chair!

Light and Voices said...

Your blog posts today stirred up memories. Agreed, I love the twig chair too.
Joyce M

La Vie Quotidienne said...

Everything looks so pretty from the plantings to the furniture and the artwork. Such wonderful attention to detail. It is charming.

WhyCuzICan said...

So pretty Sue! I'd like to take my morning coffee out and sit in your lovely garden-- may I?

Smiles from NW Illinois,
Visiting from Bunny Jean's Bunny Hop Linky Party

Bunny Jean said...

WOW! what a good deal or I guess STEAL you got on those chairs!

I'm still tainking about your "theft" of those Hydrangeas...

Once I had some neighbor kid (boy about 14) steal a few flats of plants that I had left on my side porch. I know it was him because the very next day I saw them planted in his own little garden. I never said anything...thinking that at least he was interested in gardening...? But them later he stole the pump out of our fountain... to use in his little pond. We called security on that!

Thanks for joining my Bunny Hop party!!!

xoxo Bunny Jean @BunnyJean's Decor and More!

Babs said...

Sue, I'm dying to see your lanscaping transformation. We had our front yard, stoop, steps and walkway done a couple of years ago plus landscaping. It alwasy seems so messy til it's finished. Glad your creeping jenny is doing well. Ours would be except the heat and lack of rain is making it brown...I hope brown doesn't mean dead. I think it'll pop back if it gets enough water.
Cute garden oranments and bench.
Are you going to post photos of the work in progress?

Kristal said...

Can't wait to see how your yard will look after the renovation! I love working in the yard but it has just been so stinking hot lately! Plus, we are renting and there isn't a lot I can do right now.

Great deal on those chairs too! That's the style of chair I would love to have. Might have to check with my Home Depot and see if they have any left.


very merry vintage style said...

Great garden tour! Thanks for linking to Share the Love Wednesday!

Courtney ~ French Country Cottage said...

Your garden tour is wonderful and those chairs are fantastic!! Score!! Thanks for sharing at Feathered Nest Friday! :)

Debra @ Common Ground said...

My hydrangeas just withered up this year, way too hot I guess. Love that weathered bench! thanks for linking up with VIF, xo Debra