New House Files Part 11: Reclaiming Old Flower Beds

**Note..I found this old, unfinished post, which must have been done sometime in 2012.** Publishing for my own amusment and to add to the story of this gardens transformation.

My enthusiasm for moving to and remodeling this old family home was quite simply: The Backyard.

When we began interior remodeling last year, this is what the back yard looked like.

It killed me to be inside, working on all the interior projects while the outside was in such dire need of work. have to live in a house first...

My mother in law had a connection to a Native American Tribe that was delighted to come out and take the wood for free. They used the wood in tribal ceremonies. 
The giant Tree of Heaven was rotting and large limbs had already fallen. So, down they went. Fast forward a year of and we find ourselves with a lot of buttercup weeds, invasive wood hyacinths (Spanish bluebells) and just plain old grass/weed mix.

I was determined to reclaim these old flower beds. I've been told by the elder generations in my husbands family, about how they remembered that back yard, blooming with flowers and a huge victory garden that fed my husbands great grandfather and mother and his grandmother during the lean depression and WWII years. They told me about how beautiful the flower beds used to be. I wish to bring back this beauty to the property.

My vision is to create a shade garden on the right, which is situated under the branches of snowball, a dogwood and a star magnolia trees.

On the right, I plan to build a sun loving flower bed, full of bee/butterfly/humming bird friendly perennials.

Along the right side of the yard, I have planted clumping bamboo. I am willing it to grow as the view of the neighbors junked jeep and yard is quite unappealing. I haven't figured out a privacy solution for the shade side, but I do have some idea's brewing.

I want to feel like the flower beds are close and enveloping, around the patio area and close to the home. We have plans to clear the grass out and create a patio with paving stones. I think a fire pit would also be a nice addition.

Here's what my progression looked like in April of 2012:

Shade Bed Side with work begun
Shade Bed Progression
Shade Garden in Progress with the addition of great plants I picked up at a Garden Blogger's Plant Swap
And looking to the right, we see the proposed sun flower beds.

Proposed Sun Bed
Proposed Sun Bed Overwhelmed by Weeds & Wood Hyacinths. It's a lot of space to dig up. 
And the jouney continues...

I found this unfinished post as I went into my 'draft' file and was shocked at the transformation that has occurred. What a journey this garden and I have been on in six years!

Cheers, Jenni


  1. Sometimes we lose track of how far we have come. Aren't you grateful for those early photos?

    1. Thanks Rickii! I was surprised as I went through my drafts to find this one. I could have sworn I published it. Ooops!


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