Spring is awesome on its own, and its even better when you get out there and get the yard/garden in good shape. It's one of those things where your time investments are repaid in so many ways - this is one of the few times where you get both instant gratification AND gratification deferred! You get a workout, you get vitamin D, you get the mood-enhancing effects of both meaningful work and being outdoors, and you get a beautiful landscape which will more than repay your efforts in fruit, flowers, and color. We love gardening. So we'd like to share our garden with you - a kind of virtual tour of the grounds:
The Anniversary Garden was planted last May-June (2010) as our parent's anniversary gift to each other, and has roses(all colors), peonies, azaleas, clematis, daisies, banana plants, strawberries, blueberries, asparagus, rhubarb, lots of assorted flowers and plants, a watering can water fountain, a metal (Lira hand painted it) palm tree with lights, a soon-to-be worm bed in a turtle sand toy, and a black metal arch. The strawberries got their own bed last year. We made a two-tier wooden bed, painted it green, filled it with chicken manure dirt, and planted some strawberry starters Dad bought. We also built, painted, and planted an asparagus/rhubarb planter this year.
The Orchard has apple, pear, peach, sour cherry and bing cherry trees, black raspberries, red raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, red grapes, and green grapes. We drove posts on each end of the berries and connected adjustable wires to help guide the berry plants within their row. We get our mulch for free from our local electric company. They're happy to have a place to dump all their wood shavings, and we're happy to use the mulch all over the yard - around berries, trees, in the Anniversary Garden - anywhere you might possibly see mulch.
The Vegetable garden is currently being planted and has tomatoes, peppers, watermelon, cantaloupe, okra, popcorn, onions, yellow squash, zucchini, a really old (freshly painted) corn crib, and a raised bed that we put together from a kit and painted with sealer. This spring Dad got his tractor out and tilled the garden several times (as he does every year), and we got our stakes with twine (we use them every year to get the rows straight) and measured out the rows. After hoeing, we hand planted seeds and plants.
The Five Ponds have two waterfalls, two bridges, and are connected by a river. To create the river, we built up the sides with sand and gravel, covered it with black waterproof tarp, filled it with river rock and placed larger rocks in and around it. We landscaped around it with azaleas, lilies, yellow rose bushes, ivy, other assorted flowers and plants from our yard and nursery, landscape lights that come on at dusk and turn off at dawn, and a Japanese Maple tree. The upper waterfall was difficult to create because the water kept escaping through the back. Eventually though, we got the tilt just right.
The Front Rock Path we set by hand 6 years ago. We set this path (and a back porch) by hand and put concrete sealer on it (I don't remember exactly what it was we sealed it with). Now it only requires maintenance with a weed-eater.
Various Other Parts of Our Yard that you will see in the pictures have pergolas, buildings (that we built), bird houses (all painted and some built by us), corners that we've planted, landscaping lights, a homemade welcome sign, and possibly other things that we forgot about.
If you can't identify something, feel free to ask!