The Earth Day Door Yard

Since today is Earth Day, I decided I should give you a tour of our door yard.

When we first bought our house it had a lot of potential. By potential I mean it wasn’t taken care of. There was stuff everywhere and the grass was approximately 6 feet high in spots – I wish I was exaggerating. So when we moved in, the first things we did were to clear up the junk, and bushhog the grass (and to find out there were a ton of rocks throughout our yard). 3 1/2 years later we still have eons of landscaping to go but things look drastically different. I promise the photos below are actually of the same yard.

If your facing the house, this is the back yard to the left from the side of the house. Story with the hole below (where the collapsed deck is): the previous owners had an above ground pool they sunk three feet into the ground. It was collapsed when we moved in. So once we pulled it out with the truck and a chain we were left with a giant hole. It will eventually be filled in, but for now it serves great as a bonfire pit for all the brush and wood we find and aren’t able to reuse. I also rolled my car down the hill one day into that hole. Not on purpose of course, and Mr.A couldn’t figure out why I was driving on the lawn…until it hit the hole and he realized I wasn’t in the car. Nope, I threw the e-brake on to put some bottles in my car into the recycling and away it rolled. Hilarious now – not so hilarious then. My neighbors immortalized the moment by putting it in the annual Christmas calendar they make us every year. I’ll never live it down.

This is the same yard as above, only facing the other half of the yard where the new barn and garage is. We cut down the big pine tree (which hid the other tree in the “progress” photo below), removed the fence, brought down the blue barn, and used the tractor to dig out a ton of rocks to make two and a half of the three stone walls. Notice the new barn progress in the background. Much of it was made using the reclaimed materials from the old barn, and from wood that was sawed into timbers from one of Mr.A’s father’s woodlot.

Here’s a kicker. I swear this is the same spot of the yard. It’s one of the biggest changes. The “Before” photo below is from about the “front” of the garage versus the side.

Hard to believe, even with the difference of seasons in these pictures, how different these are!

So there is a stone wall under there…(this progress shot is from the direct other side of the front tree). Only the front tree still is in existence. The second bundle of trees there had to come down.

Finally, my favorite transformation from jungle to garden. The before is from the back of the garden area, the progress is the from the front corner. Just wait to see it when it’s in full bloom with veggies and herbs – it’s gorgeous!

My favorite find of our yard was all of these granite slabs. Mr. A found it all buried as part of an old foundation. We’ll be using this in future hardscape projects to make some steps, etc.

So there it mostly is. I could have waited until summer, or raked the yard some but hey – let’s keep it real. Progress is progress and I can tell you we have had so many compliments from neighbors or people who drive by, and stop, just to tell us how much nicer the yard looks! Mr. A gets compliments on the garage at least a handful of times per summer and now that the barn has started we’ve had a few slow downs on the road just so people can get a better look.

I’m looking forward to the yard cleanup to come and for the green grass to grow all around and around and the green grass to grow all around…

Happy Cleaning Up!


5 thoughts on “The Earth Day Door Yard

  1. Nice! You are just so lucky! I love the way everything is coming together!

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  2. Love your progress. It shows me that their is hope for my family yet! We moved into a “piece of work” too. Although for us it’s been 5 years since we moved in and we are just starting to SEE THE PROGRESS! It’ hard with little ones but the more hands helping the better. Always a work in progress.

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  3. Love the progress!!! You guys have done a great job. I completely understand having a scary looking backyard. It took us {so far} 3 1/2 years to transform our yard, but we still have a little bit more to do. It’s not easy at all. We had a semi inground pool and we had it for 2 seasons and then it started to rust. So we took it out. It wasn’t easy filling in that hole. It kept sinking back down, but now it’s ok. We found and continue to find the previous owners kids toys everywhere in the backyard. Oh the stuff we found over the years. It was a junk yard for toys. We also had a bunch of rocks in our yard. We used some for landscaping and then the rest we freecycled. Lots of luck to you. It’s all worth it in the end to have what you want.

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    1. Hey Jen! Thanks! I wish I had better documented the process early on, half the time I can’t even make out what I took a picture of because it’s all brush! I can’t wait to show pictures of the yard when it’s all green and blooming. I wish I could capture the warm sweet country air and somehow post it on here for everyone. Congrats on all your hard work too! Isn’t it great all the odd little things you find. Around our place it’s a lot of old rusted metal items – including a really old toy truck that now sits as a decor piece in our house. 🙂

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