Landscraping

This posting is a long time coming – not only because the major landscaping work was done in April and I’m only now posting the photos, but because we didn’t get to the landscaping until two years after we moved back into the house. What was our hurry?

One of the hard things about moving the house was having to stop gardening for the last few years, first because it made no sense to plant anything when the whole yard was going to be leveled, and then because it made no sense to plant anything before we were able to have someone come in and smooth everything off and put down some real soil. For those of you not in New England, real soil = soil without rocks. Because we grow some nice big rocks here, particularly, it seems, in our gardens.

One of the wonderful things about moving the house is that we got a blank slate. A more level, gently sloping, freshly seeded blank slate. And once the final scraping, leveling, and soil dumping happened this spring, we hopped right on to planting. Ok, the house still looks a bit like a 200-year-old house that got beamed down into a new housing development – pretty spare in terms of perennials around the house – but we’ve planted several things and over the next few years, they might even grow BIG.

Here are a few before and after photos so you can see the changes. Note: The before pictures look even more pitiful because they were taken in early spring, just after the snow melted, in Vermont’s ugliest season, so try not to be too hard on them.

Here’s how things looked in late April in the side yard:

Side Yard - Before

and the back yard:

Backyard - Before

If you look at the large view of that photo, you can make out all the hillocks, ankle-twisting depressions, piles of rubble and rock, and the leftover beams, of course. Oh wait, are those the remnants of the Christmas tree I see by the deck steps? Of course. Once again, what’s the hurry?

Oh, and off to the side is Hyla’s poor little play house, which was moved out of the way for the house move and never moved back to a level spot:

Playhouse - Before

Then one day, this appeared on our property, and things began to change:

Surprise!

You’d think by now we’d be used to seeing big yellow machinery hanging around the place, but it’s exciting every time, especially when it means we might have a vegetable garden again.

In a nutshell, the machines arrived, the men dug out the bad bumps and rocks, dumped loads of top soil, smoothed it all over, moved the play house to a new level spot, spread grass seed, and then put down mulch hay to protect the seed.

Here’s how things are looking nowadays:

Grass Sprouting - Backyard

Playhouse

Vegetable Garden

Yard - Southern View

I don’t have a good picture yet of the front of the house, so I’ll take one this weekend and post that soon.

If you want to wade through all of the landcaping pictures, you can see the flickr photo set here.

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