Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
1 Corinthians 3:17

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Building a Rock Garden on a Serious Slope (and Plants that Disguise Ugly Views)

Good Saturday morning to you! It's a rather quiet one here, as the two oldest boys are MIA (I jest- they're at sleep-overs), and it still surprises me to glance outside and see dots of red and orange and yellow scattered around our yard. Fall is coming, and while I LOVE fall, I'm not sure I'm quite ready for it yet! But the cooler weather is the perfect excuse inspiration to tackle one more outdoor project. This was actually a project that just jumped out at me one afternoon, about 48 hours ago to be precise.

I have no clue what led me to risk limb and life (not really) to build yet another rock garden, but...when you've got a bazillion and a half rocks in your yard still waiting to be used- ie, get rid of- after completing a *foundation rock garden and then **a massive 20+ foot rock wall/garden bed, aaaaaaaand a rather nasty-looking view of the deep bowels of a backyard deck, why not?

Since this was a last-minute, spur of the moment kind of decision, I didn't even think to snap a photo until I'd already completed the first part. Typical.  =)

Can you tell how steep the slope is? There are boulders along the left edge there, keeping the yard in place, but there is not enough distance between them and the actual deck to consider any plantings from the ground up. So, Plan B it is. Well, since I didn't really have a Plan A... Technicalities. Whatever.

For the record, while the deck itself is lovely in theory, that red makes me gag, maybe even throw up in my mouth a little bit. Sorry for that, but it's the truth. We will tackle that gem next year. But this new rock garden? Oh yeah, I'm all over that.

At first it was going to be just one little garden bed, adjacent to the railing on the far right, but then the thought of adding another one to follow along the edge of the deck appealed to me. Thus, Plan C. Right? ;)
I think having two softens the severity of the slope. Plus, mowing this area was awkward and difficult, so another problem gone gone gone.

Last month, we took out the old cracked and broken tiles and replaced them with crushed rock. Much better! The footing was unsteady, and there was lots of potential water & drainage issues looming.
This photo was taken on Isabelle's Daddy/Daughter Date Night.  =)

The ramp used to bother me, but now it seems like no big deal. It does make moving the grill and other heavier items so much easier! I've learned the hard way that without edging of some sort, that grass will creep up in the rocks (even with the landscape barrier stuff), so I'm thinking a grey brick either on its side or flat dug into the ground will look lovely. I just love how there's something pretty to look at now! This is standing at our back garage door.

Oh look, a pepper! I just had to include that! =)

I was at Lowe's for cheap-o soil to fill in the beds and they were having a 30% off sale for all plants and shrubs. Score! For under thirty dollars, I snatched up 1 Rose of Sharon shrub (8-10' tall, deciduous); 1 eunonymous (however you spell that) ground-cover plant (that will trail along those boulders on the sloping edge); 1 purple Butterfly Bush ( 6-8' tall, deciduous); 1 Globe Arborvitae (around 4' tall and wide, evergreen); 1 other (?) Arborvitae (around 6' feet tall, evergreen); 1 pot of Autumn Joy Sedum, and 1 pot of daisies. These should all grow nicely in this sunny spot and fill in as a beautiful, lush disguise to the barren underbelly of the deck. Yay! I think I'll add some daffodil bulbs, but for now I planted 2 mums as filler.

Free rocks  + discounted plants & shrubs + 24 hours start to finish = my kind of home improvement project!

Let's look at more pictures, shall we?
I can't believe that there was nothing here before, and now I can see beautiful plants from everywhere in the yard or deck, and from all the kitchen windows!

Here are some other landscaping/garden posts from the past few months:
foundation rock garden
massive rock wall

The sun is shining and we've got lots of places to go, so I'm off...have a great day!

Updated 2014
Then this happened...

...SO MUCH BETTER! I'll update with more photos of soon- it looks gorgeous now!

sharing with:
Alderberry Hill 
Link Party Palooza 
Thrifty Decor Chick 
Kelly's Korner

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