smelling the roses (.. or lavender)

16th July 2010

If you’ve checked out the photos of the exterior of our house in the “our home” section of this blog, you will have noticed that there wasn’t much in terms of landscaping or gardening. The previous owner obviously liked the “minimalist” approach, which to us, left a little something to be desired. We have a fair bit of outdoor work on our house “to-do list” (build a deck, put up shutters, plant veggie and flower gardens, paint front door, etc.) but we didn’t plan on tackling any of it until next summer when our basement renovation would be finished. However, once summer hit, we just couldn’t resist buying a few of the lovely plants at our local home and garden store. We decided to spend just one weekend (and $200) on the front garden to spruce things up a little. Here’s a play-by-play of what we accomplished with two days and two hundred big ones.

Here’s what things looked like BEFORE (note the huge bush on the right that was taking over our front lawn)…

our abode, early fall (when we first put in the offer on the house)

our abode, early fall (when we first put in the offer on the house)

You can even see that big ugly bush in the middle of winter!

winter-time

winter-time

So first thing was first, get out the chainsaw and say goodbye to our not-so-little friend.

Daniel hard at work

Daniel hard at work

We also pulled out the old boards around the garden bed and got rid of a bunch of other junk that was filling up the area. Check out the big bald spot in the grass that we were left with (plus the second patchy area where we had already put down some earth and seeds)…

grass in need of TLC

grass in need of TLC

Once everything was cleared away, we headed on over to our local garden store. We picked up a stack of 3x5x12 wooden planks for the perimeter of the bed (which ate up about half of our budget). We also grabbed some earth and grass seed (again, eating up another portion of the budget). But then came the fun part — the plants! We spent ages strolling through the nice-smelling aisles, debating over various plants and drooling over some gorgeous (but expensive!) ones. We finally settled on half a dozen perennial plants that fit into our remaining budget: pink peonies, lavender, yellow lilies, purple irises and one other yellow-flowering bush that I can’t remember the name of anymore (whoops!). We brought our new little babies home with us and lovingly planted them in the newly-built bed (thank you, Dan!). Although it still looks quite sparse, we’re sure they will fill in by next year (and if not, hopefully we’ll be able to budget another couple of hundred bucks for some additional plants).

Here is the new bed with our happy new little plants. Also note the grass that has started to sprout in our once-bald patch:

the new garden

the new garden

We added a hanging basket for a bit of extra colour on the front doorstep:

new garden bed & hanging basket

new garden bed & hanging basket

the new leafy residents

the new leafy residents

And lastly, we tossed a planter of basil, parsley and rosemary on the stoop to enjoy throughout the summer season.

yummy herbs starting to come in!

yummy herbs starting to come in!

Et voila, our improved-but-not-yet-finished front garden!

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  • Kate Bollinger

    I love it! I can’t wait to see how it fills in by next summer, and the pot the herbs are in is great! Thanks for sharing… Perhaps I will have to hire you as our decorator once Bryan and I figure out where we are headed…

    • http://thesweetestdigs.wordpress.com sweetestdigs

      Thanks Kate! I’ll pass your message onto Daniel, who was the lead gardener :) I hope you and Bryan can make it up here to see our little place in person someday!

      take good care,
      xo