waiting on Spring

I don’t usually look forward to Spring because it’s so wet and rainy and the weather is often unpleasant.  However, since becoming a homeowner I’ve eagerly anticipated Spring’s arrival which means I can get outside and work on gardens.  Last year I completely redid all the gardens (7) and planted a new one.   There were a lot of shrubs, mangy plants, ground cover and irises that were too crowded.  I literally ripped out every single thing, except the irises, and composted them.  David helped me with some small trees so I was left with totally blank slates!  I split apart all the irises and gave most of them away…I’m talking dozens of them!! I saved a few for myself and relocated them to other gardens.  I had some hydrangeas and lilac bushes at my mom’s house so I transplanted those to my garden and bought a lot of new plants that I’ve always loved.  Each garden is different in terms of how much sun it gets, how well drained the soil is, etc so I really had to plan what would go where.  I relied on some very helpful garden centre staff to suggest some lovely shade tolerant plants which did very well once planted.

I was s excited when my clematis plants opened!

This is the garden I created on the South side of our house.  I used landscaping fabric to prevent weed growth, good quality triple mix soil and created a rock wall border using materials I found on the property.
another view of the rock wall I made.
marigolds
This garden was so scraggly before with some ugly cedar bushes and a terrible spreading plant who’s name escapes me.  It took a lot of work to remove everything and I discovered the soil is very rocky and shallow.  But all the new plants here did very well!
Here is the shade garden.  I planted a lot of interesting flowers that grew quite nicely (however, this was taken as soon as I planted, before the flowers could really bloom).  My favourite plants are the wild daisies on the right that I dug up from the yard.  

We planted a veggie garden last year and have plans to double it’s size this Spring.  All the seeds were started indoors and then transplanted once ready.  Sadly, we had an unexpected frost late August that killed most of our plants.

some of our heirloom tomatos

me standing beside out veggies (mainly tomatoes) a few weeks before the frost hit.  

I really enjoyed using our brand new BBQ as often as possible last year.  I’d usually work it since I was home all day and that meant David could come home from work and just eat without having to wait very long.  BBQ meant the house stayed cool since we didn’t use the oven but it also saved us money since we weren’t using electricity during peak hours to cook our food (propane BBQ!).

David would man the BBQ for a while until I felt comfortable using it. 
foods to BBQ
YUM!  Homemade beef and bean burgers with BBQed cinnamon apples.

As soon as the weather stayed warm for more than a few days we had a lovely little hummingbird visitor at our back door.  He would fly up to the deck door and just stare into the house for a few seconds before flying away.  The little guy was so fast I couldn’t ever take a picture, but we hung up feeders to lure him in.  We ended up spotting about 4 different hummingbirds over the summer!

instead of the store bought food we made a safer mixture of sugar and water.

Our house came with a large above ground pool that we had no intention of keeping but had a somewhat difficult time selling.  It was and 8 sided pool that was 20 feet wide, 20 feet long and about 5 feet deep…so most people didn’t even have the means to transport it!  We did find someone who ended up hiring a contractor to dismantle and move it for her and we decided to give her the deck that was surrounding the pool too.  So now we have a giant empty space which will be turned into a flagstone patio!  It will require a lot of material but the end result will be amazing.  David has plans to build a fire pit, a gazebo over it all and raised planters on the perimeter.  All those will probably take place next summer though.

the pink arrows show where the pool used to be.  
we found out that the original owners of our house left a ton of garbage under the pool deck.  there’s also some rotten wood from the deck that needs to go.  overall, the space is ready for a makeover!  there is a good sand layer which evens out the ground so the flagstone can be laid right on top.

Do you enjoy getting outside for little, or large, projects?  I was surprised to learn that I do!  It’s really rewarding to see all our hard work pay off in the form of a lovely yard we can be proud of!

I’ve created a board on Pinterest that serves as my garden inspiration, so I invite you to take a peek if you’re looking for some landscaping ideas this Spring.

About Christina

20-something; rural dwelling; wife to David; homeowner; pretty good cook; wearer of skirts; friend to all cats.

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