Tuesday, May 01, 2012

landscape design 101

saturday was a fulfilling day for us.  we laid sod!!!  the evolution of our yard has been a slow, on-going, seemingly never ending process (we started in march of 2011) but we are so pleased with how our yard looks today.  care to join me for a walk down memory lane??

at the end of march last year, we ripped out this cement pathway that led nowhere.  and got rid of the shack shed that was probably going to fall over any second anyways.


we took a huge load to the dump and then danny chopped down our gigantic, misshapen willow tree (whose roots were ruining the lawn and cement).

during april + may we built some grow boxes and planted our first garden!!
(while trying to ignore the dirt + weeds that were taking over the yard...)

we tolerated the yard, and tended our garden until october when we borrowed a lovely old tractor and attempted to till up all of the grass in preparation for our sprinkler system.  it didn't go over so well but danny and max sure had a good time driving it around the yard.

this is also when i started my landscape design class which i loved.  i learned so much and implemented everything i was taught into our current design.  i was able to create a master plan after looking at many professional plans + this is what we went off of when putting in sprinklers and sod.

in november, danny cut down our ugly, ugly pine tree (we promise we're not tree haters!  new trees will be planted soon.  see above plans.)

and then our good friend jamison brought over his nice new tractor and really tilled up our yard for us:

danny + max drove around our neighbor's 4-wheeler with a steel grate on back to try and level out the yard some more...

and then we got started on our sprinklers!!

danny and his dad ran electricity back to our shed.

we patched up our very sad looking columns on the front porch,

and rented a trencher to lay the pipes for our sprinklers.

we tore out our old driveway lanes, and formed up the front for a new driveway and front walk and had a great team of guys from our ward help us out with the job:

since we laid our cement in the middle of the winter, we kept it warm with cement blankets (i had no idea these existed until now!) 

and then, finally, we were ready to get the yard prepped for sod.  this brings us up to two weeks ago.  we hired a guy (whose name won't be mentioned because i would not recommend him...) who did a good job on what we actually needed him to do but had a very hard time listening + did a little bit of damage in the process (half of our stair railing, danny's shovel, and our water shut off pipe were all casualties!)  he smoothed it all out and got it in tip-top shape.  they also brought in some dark wood chips for our garden area.  doesn't it look beautiful?!? 

this last saturday was the BIG day.  we ordered sod from emerald turf in payson (who i would definitely recommend!) and we had a giant sod laying party (we laid a little under 3400 sq. ft!) many of danny's students showed up to help.  we got the job done in a little under 2 hours and afterwards we grilled up some hot dogs (complete with some copy-cat j.dawg sauce!) and had fresh watermelon, chips, and drinks.  a few of danny's older students work for the city during the summer so they took the lead and did a fantastic job!  we couldn't have done it without them.  max even helped out too, carrying little strips in his wheelbarrow :)

i can't explain how happy i am with our new yard and i am so excited to enjoy the fruits of our labors during the upcoming summer months.  we are putting in a patio within the next few weeks and will finish up our landscaping when we can find some great deals.  in the mean time, i will keep smiling every time i hear the sprinklers come on to water our beautiful green grass!!


  1. ahhhh!!!! it looks fantastic!! great job guys!! =))

  2. Yay! Everything looks so great!

  3. You guys AMAZE me. Seriously. You are such capable homeowners {and landscapers!} It looks beautiful. Can't wait to see it in real life.

  4. Sooo great!! It looks awesome! So fun to be able to play in your yard for the summer. Max will love running through the sprinklers im sure!

  5. Hooray!!! It looks so good, and I'm so impressed with how much you have been able to do yourselves! And also how many helping hands have been available when you've needed them. Your yard and house are lovely!!!

  6. So Jealous!!! Maybe you could practice some more of your design skills on my yard!

  7. oh my goodness! It all looks great! I'm so glad you liked that class and you were able to apply it! I didn't have such a good experience, and I think it had something to do with the fact that I had no real application for it. Your lawn looks great, and i'm impressed with all you guys have done! P.s. I had no idea there were cement blankets either! Who knew??

  8. Freaking amazing. Emily and I are in awe. Danny looks so fat in all of his pictures. For real.

  9. Truly a great difference! I think it helps a lot that you have some professional knowledge of what you were doing. It gives you an edge (not that it was a competition, haha!) in creating your backyard landscape independently. The upkeep is what you have to master now. What else are you planning with it? ;)

  10. I can see that you guys really enjoyed working on your yard. Haha! It seems that Danny and Max had fun leveling out the area with a 4-wheeler. I think you found a great activity where you can have bonding with your family. You didn’t think about that, no? :p Anyhow, I hope that your yard still looks great, even after months. Do your best to keep it beautiful, okay? :)