Our yard has been one giant work in progress. I think that the people who built our house did it in a big hurry and just shoved trees and shrubs in without even thinking about it just to make the house sell faster. Nothing has any rhyme or reason to it. The shrubs are in a crooked line, the trees dont make any sense in their relativity to one another and the flower beds were just a mess. Also, we had this giant dirt mound in our back yard that looked like a failed attempt at landscaping. It was horrible. And it seemed like all of the people who have lived here since didn't put one ounce of work into making it better. Well, Kaleb and I wanted something more, something nicer so we have spent all summer thus far trying to make our yard pretty. It has been a lot more work than either of us anticipated it would be, and we quickly realized all of our dreams would have to come true as time passes. We just don't have enough of a summer, or enough of a budget for that matter, to complete all of the things on our to-do list. The items on the list for next summer are to put a fence in (hooray!), expand the deck, and put in a patio where the back garage door is. As well as keeping the yard up.
The main work that was done this summer was working on the huge dirt mound. I didnt get pictures of it before we started doing anything to it so these pictures were taken well into the process. And as bad and ugly as it looks, trust me, it was far worse before we started! We started putting bricks around the lima bean shaped mound but quickly realized we needed to fix the sprinkler in the center of it which is why there is a tunnel looking thing running through it. The bricks took the longest time because it was just Kaleb and his dad working on it and they had to dig the grass out, make sure it was level the whole way around and trust me, it was a trial and error process. It took a long time to make it completely level. We did end up running out of bricks in the end which you will see in our end pictures. We have yet to go and buy more to finish it off. We (and when i say we, I really mean Kaleb, his dad and brother) then had to rototiller all of the dirt to make it even and level, and mulch in all of the good stuff like some pete moss, some manure (we got for free haha), and some good soil. We did this on memorial day and it ended up raining on us. THAT was a miserable day. While the boys did this, my mother-in-law and I took the rototiller to the flower beds and got all of the dirt loose so we could mulch in some more pete moss and planting soil. There were so many rocks and even giant pieces of cement that someone carelessly thrown in to the dirt. Ugh that was a horrible day. So so so much work and by the end of the day it didnt seem like we had accomplished anything! We were in the yard from about 9 in the morning until 10 at night. But Delaina and I did get some flowers planted and some tomatoes which made me happy! The next week we finally planted our garden with, again, the help of my in-laws. After weeks of nurturing, watering and weeding we finally have something to show for all of our hard work! It is hard to see in all of these pictures, but we have carrots, 4 different types of corn, two different types of onions, cucumbers, zucchini, lettuce, spinach, beets, radishes, russet potatoes, red potatoes, and two kinds of peas. Our radishes are already starting to be ready to eat as well as our spinach and lettuce. Everything came up too except for one row of corn (out of 6) and we only had about 7 potatoes come up and only one little zucchini plant. But that is ok! I am super excited about it and I can't wait to eat fresh veggies for the rest of the summer and part of the fall!Above is our flower garden in the back yard which is a little scarce but hopefully next year we will have more shrubs and foliage to fill it in! You can hardly see it, but we have 4 tomato plants which are already giving us huge tomatoes. Yum yum!We have 7 pepper plants of all different types. We have some small peppers growing but nothing yet to eat. I cant wait though. Both Kaleb and I love love love peppers. This is one of our flower beds on the side of our house and it was the worst one. It was full of bark and about a billion weeds that were like 3 feet tall. I doubt anyone had touched this part since the bark had been laid down when the house was built. It was a major project removing all of the bark and weeding it. While we were removing the bark, Kaleb and I started to notice centipedes crawling here and there. Once we really got the bark up, we realized it was like a centipede kingdom! There were literally hundreds upon hundreds of them. It made us both so sick to our stomachs that we had to stop and take a break to go and get some poison. Once we let the poison sit for a day or two we finally got it all finished and flowers planted. Once again, it looks a little sparse, but hopefully next year we will have more foliage to fill it in.
We also have oregano, basil, cilantro, chives and strawberries growing inside in pots and planters. They have all come up so nicely! Everything is ready to eat and to use up, except the strawberries which I now need to get planted outside. I look forward to eating all of my bountiful harvest for the first time in my life! I also want to thank my in-laws (the gardening king and queen) for so selflessly giving of their time and energy to help us out so many times. They gave up countless hours (literally days at a time) to walk us through simple things that we didn't yet know because we were new to gardening. And I can't forget Andrew, my bother-in-law, who played with Carter so that we could work without interruption! We love you Scholes family!