After nearly a year of planning, budgeting, and coordinating with our neighbors, our big backyard renovation is nearly complete.  We still have some planting to do and some patio furniture to purchase, but we are thrilled to say that all of the major work is done (just in time for the rainy season – grrrr!).  We’re really happy with the results and can’t wait until next summer, when we can roll our grill out onto our new patio and enjoy a glass of wine in our new adirondack chairs.

These are the before photos – our largest issue with the original design of the yard was the steep slope that led from the driveway to the back door, leaving us without a nice space to put a planter bed or even set up a chair.  The grass was in horrible condition, due to poor soil and the tendency of water to run off the slope, rather than soak into the ground.  The pavers that served as the pathway up the slope were also a little treacherous in winter weather – I slipped on those things a couple of times when we got all of that snow last year.

20091108 backyard before1 small

20091108 backyard before3 small

20091108 backyard before2 small

We worked with our neighbors to come up with a solution that would include planter beds, a flat place to put seating , and stairs that would make up the rise from the back door to the driveway.  Getting all of this done within the budget we established was tricky, but ultimately do-able, after a couple of rounds of negotiations and substitutions with the contractor.  And so, Voila!

20091108 backyard after1 small

20091108 backyard after3 small

20091108 backyard after2 small

We’ve been planting things bit by bit, including a beautiful Japanese Maple tree, a bright green smoke bush, and several tulip bulbs.  I am so looking forward to watching things grow and blossom over the seasons and years to come.  Now all we need is a little sunshine (I won’t hold my breath…).

20091108 backyard maple small

20091108 backyard smoke bush small

20091108 backyard tulips small


  1. Pat says:

    Wow really nice!!!!!!!!! So worth the wait I’m sure. You guys did a nice job planning. Enjoy.

  2. Mom says:

    What a transformation from a patch of hilly grass you crossed from the garage to your back door to a space that looks so inviting to spend time in. Yes, enjoy!