Front Yard Landscaping Work Almost Done

getting rid of big and damaged bushes and planting new ones.

Well HELLO!!

I'm back with an update to the work we completed last week in our front yard. This time, all the efforts went towards updating the flower beds. 
We started off by sprucing up our entire yard about three weeks ago; we removed some small bushes that lined each side of the entry, applied fertilizers and added grass seeds to the front and back yards. This is the first time we're using an Eco-Lawn in the backyard, its a drought tolerant grass that's earth friendly, sustainable and perfect for kids, pets, and high foot traffic areas. You can check that post right HERE.
*This post contains affiliate links.

This was the final look in the front yard after removing the two lines of small boxwood bushes.
Still looking bad, but we made progress. However, we had to take some time to recoup! Yard work makes you move every. single. muscle in your body, we were sore and super tired and we needed lots of strength to fight those big bushes by the windows. 
Bringing life to a neglected front yard

1. REMOVING THE BIGGEST BUSHES

We took the bull by the horns, well the mister did. Although, he went the easy route. He used the sawzall to cut off all the branches!
Using the Milwaukee sawzall and a shovel to dig out roots from bushes  #thdprospective
|  Milwaukee Cordless SAWZALL Reciprocating Saw   |  Shovel  |
And my job was to dig those roots out all while he kept on working that sawzall there on the ground, braking those roots. At some points I thought that the handle on the shovel was going to break. Luckily it didn't, but hey, those roots weren't a joke.
Cristina Garay using a shovel to lift up those pesky roots.
Well, we removed all five bushes and this was the new view...  A bunch of branches, roots and an ugly wall.  After cleaning and putting those branches in the car, we headed to the recycling center and then, we call it a day.
Yellow house with peeling paint on the foundation wall

2. CLEANING AND RE-PAINTING THE FOUNDATION WALL
Taking care of that foundation wall was our next step. That paint was peeling off like crazy.
Peeling paint on foundation wall
I think you can remove the peeling paint with a pressure washer, but guess what, we don't have one. And since this is an small area, we used what we had, a drill and an wire brush. It worked perfectly.
Ridgid drill with wire brush attachment to remove peeling paint on foundation wall  #thdprospective
Ridgid Drill 3" Wirecup Brush Drill Attachment  |
After rinsing the wall and letting it dry, I first applied one coat of Behr Masonry, Stucco & Brick Paint - Designed for interior and exterior work, self-priming, alkali and mildew resistant finish with excellent adhesion, coverage and water repellency and color retention.
You can tint you paint to match the color of your wall.
how to repaint the foundation wall
Behr Interior/Exterior Masonry Stucco & Brick Paint  |  Paint Roller  |  
I applied the paint with a 9 In. - 3/4 In. high density roller. It worked great to get the paint into the brick crevices. Although, I had to go with a paint brush on some areas that the roller didn't get and in the corners and edges.
Cristina Garay painting foundation wall with Behr Masonry, Stucco & Brick Paint
I waited 24 hours to give the wall a second coat.

3. PLANTING NEW BUSHES

The holes for the new bushes were widened some more. Compost, soil and a bit of fertilizer were added to the ground to give the bushes a helping hand.
Holes in the ground with compost and soil to plant the new bushes
When planting the new bushes have in mind this:
  • Plant them high, letting the root ball sit higher than the surrounding soil. Planting them too low might cause the root to rot or disease.
  • Break up the roots if the're growing in the shape of the container, your new bush will thank you for that.
  • Compact the soil, eliminate air pockets in order to all the roots to have direct contact with the soil.
Cristina Garay planting a new garden
I also planted three azaleas, the lilies were already there. And this is the picture that I took at the end of the day. It was starting to take shape.
Holly and azalea bushes in place in the new flower garden

4. WATERING
I can't emphasize enough the importance of watering.  I've been doing it daily and many times twice or more during the day.
  • Water the soil abundantly for an easier way to dig those roots out.
  • Water while planting to compact the soil.
  • Water after planting to settle everything in place.

Cristina Garay hose watering the newly planted bushes in the front yard

4. MAKING THE FLOWER EDGE

My task, early the following day, was to make those sharp flower edges. I had one of those landscaping edgers like the one HERE. But, it's damaged, so I had to used this flat shovel.
front yard flower bed getting a brand new edge
The secret to make a nice edge is to push the edger 90 degrees into the bed. All along your marked line.
How to make a flower edge

5. ADDING MULCH
My BIL helped us with the delivery of the mulch. We covered the front and backyard flower beds with this truck load of mulch.
a truck load of mulch -
Although, before bringing that mulch to the flower beds, my BIL convinced me of using landscape fabric to keep weeds at bay.

There is lots of controversy on using landscape fabric in your garden

Some of the pros:

  • Of course, weed barrier.
  • Helps retain soil moisture, reduces evaporation.
  • Erosion control on slopes.

The cons:

  • Friendly animals like worms can't reach the soil surface to survive.
  • the fabric also acts as a barrier for natural nutrients to get to the soil.
  • Weeds can still sprout on the layer of mulch that's added on top of the fabric.
Anyways, I'm giving it a try. These areas are relatively small, if I think they're making more damage than good they'll be easy to remove.

We took measurements of how far apart the bushes were planted and brought those measurements to the fabric to make the holes.
How to use landscape fabric on a flower bed.
Once the fabric was laid in place, the boys started bringing the mulch while I spread it around the bushes.
flower bed with holly and azalea bushes lined up with landscape fabric
And here is the before and after of this area:
front yard spruced up with new planted bushes and mulch
I still need to plant some more flowers. But, it's looking way better than the before pic.
You can see how the grass has grown in that area where the small bushes used to be.
A patch of grass in the lawn growing nicely beside the flower bed
And here the two flower beds on our front yard. I think the toughest job is done. But, there are still lots of tasks that need to be done.
Yellow house front yard landscaping

Like cleaning those steps and the walkway, painting the handrail and planting flowers. But hey, I'm super glad with the progress we have made so far!

This weekend I'll be at it again. Stay tuned!!






*This post contains affiliate links.



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