Last summer we decided that THIS summer would be the one in which we finish all our landscaping.  We never fully landscaped the yard after the addition was built.  Sure the grass is back, and the river rock area was filled in, the raised flower beds are all in place again, but we’re lacking greenery.  We’re looking very “rocky”.

(Excuse the ugly shed- it’s also in our plans to side it with cedar shake or something “cute” down the road.)

I’m pleased that most of my lillies have multiplied, profusely I might add.  I love the lushness of this raised garden area.  It’s still bare in front of these mammoth plants, but that is OK with me.  For now.

The area around the gazebo is starting to fill in nicely.  St John’s Wort will fill any area quite rapidly!  This grassy plant was put in place two summers ago as a tiny little thing- and it’s exploded!

Some of our groundcover has also taken over appropriately, but not as much as I’d like.  Grow, grow, grow!

With the removal of our birch tree there is an ugly mud and stump focal point by our gazebo!  It’s marred with drill holes and slashes in an effort to “kill” it so that it eventually dissolves.  We can’t pull it out, and can’t grind it, so our plan is to cover it up.

We have a solution for this area, though!  We’re going to put a circle of retaining blocks around it, fill it in with gravel, cover it with a nice center stone, and we picked up one of those “swirly” trees to make IT the new focal point.  Now I just need a bigger decorative pot to put it in. I found a burnt red pot that I like, I’ll pick it up later this week.

We also picked up three huge pots from Costco.  Those will sit on our river rock bed and we’ll fill them with tall grassy plants and maybe some cascading flowers.

One area we’ve avoided for three years- is the area against our house, between the house and the grass.  Just a six-foot wide area of barkdust, running the last 20′ of our house.  We need to do something with that.

So now we’re thinking we want to put in a path, one that matches our cobblestone patio, and maybe at the other end of the house put in a circle patio (rotunda is the appropriate name) and branch some paths off that- one going towards the daycare shed, the other going to the playground.  That way, maybe, the kids won’t get so muddy when they go outside to play in the Spring and Fall months.

Like this:

We’re also toying with the idea of running the path all the way around the grass.  A sidewalk in a way.  That would be nice.  But a lot of work up front.  Ick.

So I’m busy consulting with landscapers, reading landscaping books, looking at patio ideas, plant ideas, I have the itch to go do some shopping, but no time to do it (the story of my life).

We’d love to hear your thoughts, ideas, get referrals etc.  Hoping we can find a “hungry” landscaper who can come in and do it all for us for a good rate.  I’ll keep you posted!