TCoFTH: Landscaping For The Landscaping Challenged

The previous homeowners (I’m saying this a lot, they will now be referred to as PHO) left us some questionable landscaping, but good-sized space to work with.  There was a garden plot in the back left corner, a decent shed in the back right, and the few trees in the yard had little landscape boxes around them to hold mulch.  As far as the landscaping in the front is concerned, as well as some to the side of the house in the back, we have a nice combination of trees/bushes that look really dead and a buttload of what I”m assuming will be tulips.

We were originally planning to leave most of it in this year to see what it looks like, then decide what we liked and didn’t like, rip it out at the end of the season, and replace things at the beginning of next season.  Then tulip (question mark?) leaves started sprouting up EVERYWHERE and the bushes we thought were dead from winter started to look more dead, so we are pretty sure we’re going to just go ahead and destroy things this year.

This weekend we finally had nice weather, and if the forecast is to be believed it should stay this way.  Well, relatively anyways.  It shouldn’t go back to freezing, which is the important part.  We took the opportunity to start some of our yard work.

We took care of the grass by getting the sprinkler system restarted and seeding, fertilizing, and mowing the front and back.  The sprinklers still need some adjusting (it’s obvious the addition of the shed came after the sprinklers were installed…the back of the shed is very very clean), but overall no surprises here.

The PHO had used some of the bright red mulch, and to say we are not fans of this look is an understatement.  We removed all the red mulch to prep it for flowers and new (not bright) mulch, then moved on to the garden.  The nearby tree had littered the area with twigs, branches, and acorns, and the box was full of weeds and confused plants from seasons past.  We set to work removing as much of the large debris as possible, then took our handy spades and started digging up the weed root systems.  It was sort of impressive how deep some of them went.  We tilled it up and mixed in some good fertilized soil, watered it to help it mix, then called it a day.


It still doesn’t really look all that different from the house, but up close you can tell we laid some good groundwork (HAH, I made a punny) for future projects.  We have a small pile of flowers we’re going to plop into the tree boxes, and a collection of seeds we’re going to try in the garden.  We won’t be around this weekend, so we don’t really know when we’ll get it done, but it’s the thought that counts right?

Of course, all of this is ignoring the fact that I’m terrible at keeping plants alive.  Maybe with Geoff in the mix it will work out.

Are you into any gardening or landscaping?  Have any tips or good stories of growing adventures gone wrong?


Posted on April 29, 2013, in Life, The Chronicles of First Time Homebuyers and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Yay! Looks like you guys got some nice work done! I’m looking forward to hearing about the progress of your yard!

    My parents always had a huge garden when I was growing up so I have always been jealous of people who actually have land to plant things. I usually cheat every summer and have a tomato plant in one pot and some cucumber plants in a few other pots that just chill on my back step. It’s taken me a few years to figure out Colorado’s ridiculous weather (i.e. 70 one day and then 20 and snowing the next day in the spring and then ranging between 50 and 100 all summer) but the past years I have had slight luck. This year I have cucumbers, tomatoes, cantaloupes (we’ll see about those), and two different kinds of spicy peppers for Cobalt all ready to go outside but it’s supposed to snow (AGAIN) on Wednesday so I think they’re going to have to wait a little longer… sorry guys… Booooo Colorado… the plants want to be in bigger pots/outside!

    • Oh and funny story about how I killed our peppers last year… They grew ridiculously slow and were just starting to have baby peppers around October. Then Halloween came and we put the plant outside so it wouldn’t be in the way during our Halloween party. Then it dropped waaaaaaaaaaaaay below freezing overnight and our little friends froze to death… :p (I blamed them because I planted them in April… who waits 6 months to have baby peppers?!)

    • This is why most people in Colorado wait until after Mother’s Day to plant anything outside. It’s really likely that things will freeze before that. We all grew up planning our Halloween costumes around a winter coat too!

      Jenn, it looks like some of those plants in the front of the house are tulips and some look like they could be irises. Both are bulb plants, so if you want to replace them, plant them in the fall! I hope your yard turns out super nice!

      • Thanks for the advice! Sure enough, Friday some of the bulbs started looking different, so it’s not just a tulip fest. I’ll definitely be transplanting some of these, and it’s good to know fall will be the best time for it!

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