Friday, January 27, 2012

Feels Like Spring

The weather is just one of the many things I love about good ol' VA.  Even at the end of January we still have days where the temperature is close to 70, and it feels just like May.  This got me thinking about our Spring 2011 outdoor project.  

Our first step in tackling the front yard, was the flower bed.  Before we got a hold of it, the bed consisted of a few measly Azaleas and lots of dirt.  Not very homey or welcoming, to say the least.  We decided to add some sexy curves to the flower bed and extend it.  After finalizing the outline of our new bed, we determined which plants would be the best for the partially shady spot.  

We headed to a local nursery and picked up the following:
  • 1 Japanese Maple Fireglow (this stays small, so we don't have to worry about it taking over our house)
  • 3 Nandina Domestica (they have festive reddish-orange berries in the winter)
  • 2 Hawthorn Indian Princess
  • 3 Euonymus Moonshadow
  • 2 Azalea Amagasa Coral/Orange
  • 12 Liriope Super Blue
  • 3 Gardenia Dwarf (these little guys didn't make it, so we ended up getting three more Azaleas to fill their place)
After traveling home with all of our new babies, we attempted to put our green thumbs to work.  Equipped with shovels, fertilizer, gloves, and a hose we began to place and plant everything in our flower bed.

  We used the Liriope to create a soft border on the edge of our flower bed.  The Maple was placed in it's own little spot, so it could really show off its vibrant leaves (maybe one day we will get a soft light to shine on it at night).  We put the three Nandinas near the window with the Hawthorns and Euonymus  in front of them.  The Azaleas found their spot in front of the porch and in spring they will bring a nice pop of color (hopefully!).

During the planting process, we made sure to tease the roots, dig a properly sized hole, and sprinkle with a little fertilizer to give all the plants a boost.  Thankfully they all survived the summer...well, most of them (had to replace the Gardenias with Azaleas).  We are hoping Spring 2012 will really show off our new garden and everything will pop out.  

We knew after planting and mulching our new flower bed, were were going to have to do something with the front lawn.  See that big brown, bare spot in our lawn??  Well, this past fall we made that our outdoor project.  Drew Babe aerated and planted a brand new lawn using a Fescue seed mix.  After lots and LOTS of watering, we now have a beautiful and lush front lawn.  

All of the pictures above are when the plants were just babies, and we had more dirt and weeds than grass.  Check back in a couple months for all the "after" pictures, which will all be lush, green, and vibrant....fingers crossed!

Psst...We have a new porch idea in the works as well.  Can't wait to say goodbye to that awning which never seems to stay clean no matter how many times Drew Babe power washes it.  So keep an eye out for a new front porch as well! :)

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