Yard Makeover: The 2016 Plan

Now that we have settled down for the most part, we're looking at transforming our place into a home and one of first goals – making over our yard.

When we were touring the house we loved the size, but we knew it would take quite a bit of work to get the yard ready.

Our Yard Makeover Plan

Besides making it looking good, we have a few practical goals for our backyard:

  • Kids: The house came with a playground, but it is in definite need of TLC and maintenance. (Maybe more, but we have to ask someone more knowledgeable.) We also want to maintain an open area so they could play and run.
  • Food: We've had a vegetable garden for years. It's been small spaces, though, so we're looking to learn and grow more this year.
  • Cat: We're creating a spot for our lovable (to me) and crazy cat. This was something we've planned for awhile as it became clear that our cat was better off and happier when exploring outside.

We have a lot of work ahead of us for this year.

Remove the Overgrown Ivy and Brier

There is a ton of ivy around the front and back, growing on some of the trees and the fence, climbing on the brick.

Tons of leaves, brier, ivy, and mess when we first started with the yard.

Tons of leaves, brier, ivy, and mess when we first started with the yard.

One of my first tasks was to get it off the brick.

The brier is also scattered about (which has meant plenty of times I've been scratched and cut!), but it's especially bad on the fence.

Prepping Our Garden Spots

The soil around our place varies so we're using two good and sunny patches for our inaugural gardens.

I'm picking up seeds for both vegetables and flowers and will start planting this weekend.

(I did a podcast on easy plants to grow in case you want to try gardening out.)

As for the rest of the yard, we're be working on remediating the soil. We have sandy spots on the south side and plenty of clay in the back corner.

With all the yard debris we've been clearing, I'm going to try hugelkultur beds out in the back part of the yard.

Figuring Out the Playground

We cleared out the leaves, vines, and yard mess around the play-set. Now we have to figure out what to do with the actual playground.

We can't afford to buy a new one, but I do like having one out for the girls and their friends to enjoy.

Some of the beams need to be replaced for sure, along with the swings which have definitely seen better days.

If you've done this, could you let me know how it went?

Free the Panther

One of the stipulations with the move is that my cranky cat (who had a habit of marking) would be acclimated into an outdoor one.

It's not too much of a stretch – he use to hang outside, but with no real yard and plenty of dogs around, his options were limited in the townhouse.

Through trial and error I modified a rabbit hutch for him along with a tiny fence around. He's been enjoying it. His appetite is much better and I've caught him purring quite a bit while he enjoyed laying in the sun.

Enjoying Our Yard in 2016

We'll see how things go (and I'll share the good and the bad here!) with our makeover. I'd love to get your take on fixing up the yard.

What projects have you done at your spot?

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