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Landscaping: Part 326

Just kidding. It's only part 26 ;-)

If you may recall, back in 2015 we had a master landscaping done by Jennifer Bakshi of Urban Oasis. Here it is. This Spring, in addition to doing the work on the chimney at the front of the house, we also decided to do the phase 1 of the landscape plan. It was time. So, this post describes the work already completed several months ago, but it gives me something to write about, as we are not going to be doing any work this Fall.

This is our starting point. When we first purchased the house, the section of the yard that was above the retaining wall was a forest. Lots of trees, tall bushes, grasses, not very hospitable. Within a year of moving in, we hired Terra Graphics to level it, and fence it off, since herds of deer had a tendency to spend a lot of time there. This worked beautifully. But, now is time to address the area directly outside of the house. Because the top was wild, the previous owners, basically used the bottom part as both seating area AND play area, so one half was blue stone, and the other half moderately successful grass. Our plan called for the entire bottom part to now become usable outdoor space for both seating and entertaining, and upstairs terrace play area for kids.

First step was to remove and clean the existing blue stone. You can see it here stacked in the back.
Once the stone was removed, the contractor dug up the trenches for water drainage. These will all lead into the existing french drains previous owner installed.
After the new leads were installed, it was time to grade the backyard. Basically, we will elevate the grade next to the house, and slope it slightly towards the french drain and side yard, to help even further with water that has been plaguing our backyard. For those that haven't seen the videos, because we are facing the mountain, we get a deluge of water coming down from Upper Mountain every time it rains. And I am not talking little water. I am talking cascading river. This is not a hyperbole.

But, I digress. The next step was to install the new stairs and landing outside the 2 doors leading into the backyard.
The original plan called for building the wooden deck, but the landscaper doing the work suggested a simpler solution: big blocks of granite. Doesn't move, doesn't rot, doesn't require maintenance, and it's beautiful. And it even cost less. To make it even easier, he said he will build 2 steps, instead of 3 originally planned. This way, the first step and the landing will actually be lower than the door, so there will be no water/rain issues. Needless to say, we were very excited.

So, big chunks of stone have been delivered and installation has begun. Perfect timing for big machines. And heaven for little boys who like big machines.

To be continued...


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