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Kelsey The Gardener

After the world’s longest weekend of gardening, our front yard is almost done!  Anthony worked all weekend (boo) but my parents and my brother Brian were able (and mostly willing!) to come over Saturday and Sunday and help me put the yard together.

Brian and Dad busted their asses to build the fence on the South side of our yard, right on the property line between our house and the one next door.  That house is for sale right now, so I’m glad we got the fence built before any new neighbors move in and it seems weirdly passive-aggressive to be putting up a fence between our yards.  Initially we had planned on doing a simple, white picket fence.  So cliche, I know.  But after they had gotten the posts in the ground (Saturday), and the rails installed (Sunday), we actually decided to leave the pickets off and add a third rail, so now it’s a simple split-rail fence, which is super adorable and very farmhouse-y.  I still need to paint the rails and do a second coat on the posts, which I should hopefully be able to work on in the evenings after work this week, if the weather permits!

There were some issues with the fence, though.  Initially, Brian had figured that we’d do 7 sections of fence, so I’d purchased 7 posts, 70 pickets, and 14 rails.  Dad and Brian marked out where the holes needed to be dug, got started, and ran into a ton of old tree roots that were too thick and ridiculous to dig through.  So they ended up making a trip to Lowes to buy new, longer rails, and we now have 4 longer sections of fence, rather than 7 shorter ones.  I don’t really care, either way, and now I can return all the pickets and rails that we didn’t use, which will actually give me back a good sized chunk of money.  I like money.

While the guys were working on our fence, Mom and I got in the car and drove ourselves to Flower World to do some shopping.  That place…it’s magical.  It goes on for what seems like forever, it smells like heaven, and the selection is endless.  We ended up leaving with an SUV full of plants (including a tree!), then stopped at a roadside plant sale on the way home and bought even more plants.  It seemed like overkill at the time, but after getting them all planted, I’m glad we didn’t hold back.

When we got home from Flower World, we started laying out the edging stones I’d bought on Friday after work, to line the new flower beds.  Once that was done, we plopped the plants where we wanted to plant them, shuffled them around a little, and I got to work digging holes.

Turns out, I hate digging holes.  Not only because it’s hard and it sucks, but because down under the beautiful new top soil of our yard, there’s still a shitload of rather large rocks that I had to pull out.  WTF IS WITH THE ROCKS AT OUR HOUSE?! There are also a lot of old tree roots down there, too, so it was pretty slow work digging through all of that.  Eventually, though, I got all the holes dug, and I was able to plant our flowers!

End of Saturday!

It may not look like much, but this was a ton of work!  We got back to it again on Sunday morning, though we moved a bit slower since we were all incredibly sore.

Dad and Brian got to work again on the fence, installing the rails, while Mom and I went to Lowes.  We needed larger edging stones to build a ring around our new cherry tree.  Except, we didn’t actually want it to be a ring, we wanted a square.  Except, a square wasn’t really going to work because of the weird water-line-access-thing that sticks way up in our yard, so we decided to go with a very slight rectangle.  A treetangle, we called it!  We’re, like, really clever.

We bought 40 large flagstone edgers, which SERIOUSLY weighed down my car.  I wish I’d taken a better picture that showed how ridiculously low my bumper was, but I didn’t, so…sorry.  But with the stones, the peat moss, the mulch (we chose black to make the colors of the flowers really pop!) and the lattice (for the 2 vine plants we bought at Flower World) in there, it was comically low, and also a little scary to drive.  I’m normally a person who does most of my driving in the fast lane, but with the huge amount of weight in my car I had to stick to the slow lane and leave a LOT of following space, just in case.

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The guy who helped us put the stones in the car did not think we should be taking that many stones in my car, in one trip.  We ignored him.

After we got back, we unloaded all the stuff from my car and started scratching fertilizer and peat moss into the soil, putting fertilizer stakes in the ground by all the plants, then spreading mulch.  We waited for Dad and Brian to start working on the treetangle, which we’re really happy with.


We thought we’d be fine with 40 large edging stones.  We thought wrong.

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We’re one goddamn rock short.  So today, I get to go back to Lowes on my way home to buy ONE STUPID ROCK, and then we can be mostly done with the treetangle.  We’d bought some construction adhesive to glue the top rocks to the bottom ones, but not only could I not get any to come out after wrestling with the caulk gun for a good half an hour, then being made fun of by Anthony for being a wimp with no grip strength; ANTHONY COULDN’T GET IT TO COME OUT EITHER! HA!  So, we aren’t quite sure what to do about that just yet.

We need to get some more top soil and mulch to fill in around the big tree in the corner of the yard, paint the fence (I’ll work on that throughout the week), and roll out the sod (this weekend!) and then our front yard transformation will be DONE!  Sure, I’ll be adding some adirondack chairs to the front porch and probably a new doormat, but for the most part it’ll be complete.

Oh…maybe I’ll include some pictures, yeah?  This is what we’re working with as of yesterday afternoon:

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Partway done lining the flower bed, I’m obsessed with the fence!

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I’m pretty in love with it, personally 🙂

5 days until sod!


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