Planting a Garden: Part One

This weekend we embarked on one of our biggest adventures yet: building our garden.

Let me clarify.  Not so much garden, as gardenS in both the front and back yards and also putting up a new fence.  It is a daunting task, and we’ve only nicked off the tip of the iceberg.  This weekend we came up with some plans, got supplies, and starting taking down the enormous bush in our front yard.  Before we can do anything, we have to clean out everything.

We have three main goals for this project:
1) Make the yard safe.  Right now, we are dealing with several years of neglect from previous owners.  Cigarette butts littered about, trash, sharp object ranging from… everything, and lots and lots of cat poop from the neighbor’s cat.  The fence is also a complete mess on one side (pictures next week), enabling our dogs to be able to jump over.  On the other side, the fence has nails sticking out everywhere.  This is not only not safe for our dogs, but also not ideal for kids.
2) Make the yard functional.  Right now, there’s not a whole lot you can do in either yard.  The back has a tiny place to sit, but there’s not much else to do.  The back gardens will be dedicated to food production, and the front will be dedicated to Colorado friendly flowers and plant-life, so as to not kill our water bill.
3) Make the yard aesthetically pleasing.  I have a feeling this will fall into place as number one and two are accomplished.  Yes, curb appeal is important, especially for the front.  For the back, it’s nice for when we have company over.

We didn’t originally plan on taking out the bush this weekend.  It just sort of happened.  We had planned on going for a hike with the dogs, but instead woke up, made a huge yummy breakfast for everyone, and just sort of wandered outside and started working.  We wheeled everything to the back yard, because next week, we are getting a huge dumpster (or two) to removed all the crap in both yards.

The beginning of the project was easy:

photo 1
This is my dad chopping up the bush.
photo 2
Even Layla was bored at how easy it was going.

But then we got to the base of the trunks and roots.  My dad and husband took turns chopping at it.  It took a few hours.

My husband and dad trying to shovel a spot to hit the trunk.
My husband and dad trying to shovel a spot to hit the trunk.
Husband mid-swing.
Husband mid-swing.

Eventually we got it out, and now we have a clear space.  Apparently our neighbor was none too happy, but that is probably because they were able to hide their garbage and store other things under our bushes…

The bare spot.  Now we need some dirt and mulch and clear out some rocks!
The bare spot. Now we need some dirt and mulch and clear out some rocks!

I also found out I was incredibly allergic to this bush.  I could barely breath after helping move it to the back and any place that it had contact with my skin I developed a huge rash (still have a bit of a rash left over).  So I’m even more glad it’s gone.  I can literally breath easier.

Here’s a couple pics of the bush in the mulch pit in the back:

It takes up almost half of our giant mulch pit!
It takes up almost half of our giant mulch pit!
Close up.
Close up.

You will also note all the debris from when we got rid of our shed last weekend.  Boy, what a project!

Next weekend will be fun though.  We will have some friends over and have a dumpster party, grilling and all!

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