My project plan was complete including a scaled drawing. We took advantage of a great Memorial Day sale and bought thirty-two landscape timbers at half price.
Last summer, I cringed every time I pulled into my driveway. My failure to complete the project had me feeling frustrated.
My view when I pulled into the driveway was disheartening. I could see the black landscape fabric spread over the area to the right of my front porch. Twenty or so large creek stones scattered about were holding the material in place. I put the fabric there to keep the weeds from taking over the bare soil while I worked on the area to the left of the porch.
When you don’t know what to do next, you get overwhelmed.
We had the holly tree stump ground down but it only grazed the surface of the massive root system.
The left side had stalled.
We had cut down a forty-year-old American Holly tree and we had the stump ground out. That was part of the plan.
I didn’t realize the invasiveness of the holly tree’s root system. That root was a beast. Continue reading →
Summer is filled with vacations and extra activities. It’s also a time to relax and take it easy. Here in the southeastern United States our summers are hot, hazy and humid. The thick summer air zaps my energy and seems to slow down my thinking as well.
We took a wonderful vacation to the Atlantic coast in late July. I love the beach during the hot summer months. The temperature there is usually a few degrees cooler than at home. The ocean breeze is amazing and contributes to that cool sensation.
I took a sunrise walk to Pier 14 every morning
The cool crisp air will be here soon
I am writing this as we enter the fall season. It’s still quite warm where I live in East Tennessee. The sky has changed from the hazy blue gray of summer to the intense blue of fall.
I find the fall of the year to be energizing. I’ve often felt that September signaled the beginning of a new year. I have childhood memories of school starting in early September. I’m sure you do too. Remember the feeling of starting school with new clothes, shoes and a notebook? Continue reading →
I love projects. Especially projects around the house. I seem to attract clients who also love projects. Some projects are quickly initiated and completed. Others are planned to the finest detail before they’re launched.
Some projects need to percolate for a while
There is another type of project. A project that needs to percolate a while before it’s started. I’ve had many of them.
One of my clients had such a project.
I worked with her for over a year to get her entire house organized. When we worked in the garage we came across plastic plant tags – you know – the ones that come attached to the plant at the nursery.
When I asked her if it were a keep or a toss, her response was, “Keep! I need that for my plant label project.” Continue reading →
We moved to our home near Knoxville, TN in May of 2001. The house came with a huge above-ground swimming pool. In 2005, after knowing for quite some time that we were not pool people, we gave the pool away.
My husband spent about a month removing the old weathered decking and privacy fence. There were massive ruts in the soil underneath where the deck had been. We also found a concrete drain installed to catch the water that ran down our driveway. The ruts in the soil proved it wasn’t large enough to do the job.
Plan your work… and work your plan… right?
My plan was to create a shrub garden and patio in the area that the deck had covered and return the rest of the space to lawn. I was sure if I brought in a lot of soil, built the area up and planted it, the existing drain would work and there would not be any further water damage. I would discover after the fact that I was wrong.
I spent much of the summer of 2005 digging and amending soil and creating the shrub bed. This picture reveals the space before I planted the shrubs and mulched the bed. The first hard rain washed away my new mulch and dug a gully through the shrub bed.
I retaliated by creating a rock lined dry creek through the shrub bed. The rock area worked to keep the mulch in place, but the lawn and future patio area still flooded every time we had a gully washer. It left a muddy mess.
I decided I needed a longer creek that would carry the water across the twenty foot flat area of the backyard and drop it where the yard slopes downhill. Great plan but I had a problem. I could not visualize the path for the creek. Nothing that I imagined seemed to look right and I didn’t know why. Continue reading →