The Big Backyard Project; Stalled due to injury

If you follow the blog regularly, you know that this week we are tackling our sad looking backyard. It’s a fairly steep slope with grass and a few random bushes that struggle to grow.

Sometime after Richard moved in and before the rest of us arrived, he got curious about the rocks protruding out of the grass and started digging.  Those efforts are the patches of stone you see exposed on the slope.

This of course partially explains why the soil is so rocky and why the grass and other plants the previous owners attempted to landscape the yard with haven’t faired very well.

We considered various options in transforming the yard. First, we considered building a pond-less waterfall and after an extremely expensive estimate, we shelved that idea.  We also doubted we could dig deep enough to get a proper basin for the water to collect and couldn’t see covering our sandstone with plastic and bring in more rock.

Next, we considered a small retaining wall or series of walls.  That too was an extremely expensive endeavor, if not nearly impossible.  The sides of the yard that heavy machinery would use to access the backyard are equally steep and narrow.

The contractor said even if he could get the machinery up the far side of the yard, he worried it would tip over into the screened in porch! The contractor even made sure though to get the right plant insurance for his machinery just in case something bad was to happen.

After all that bad news, we focused on the inside of the house until we could come up with a better solution.

The crazy idea we came up with was to expose the sedimentary rock.  We figured we should just embrace what God gave us and make it beautiful.

With the kitchen remodel nearly finished and an offer of plants from Southern Living Plant Collection to get us started on our backyard project,  Richard took the week off to make our backyard dream into a reality.

Unfortunately, even before we shoveled our first pile of dirt and rock his shoulder was already aggravated.

After a good bit of this, he was in severe pain.

Yesterday, despite the set backs we finished uncovering the area I had mapped out and started on the dry creek bed which will provide drainage during rainstorms. The plan is for the creek bed to move  the water away from the house and down to the driveway.

This is what the yard looked like at the end of our workday yesterday. Dry creek bed was carved out and the large area of the sedementary rock uncovered and hosed off so that the loose dirt would not pollute the creek bed.

But today, I’m at it alone.  Richard received an injection in his shoulder and is to rest for the next few days. I plan to finish stacking the stone along the top side of the exposed rock and prep the areas where the plantings will go.

Thankfully we have been blessed with very comfortable weather.

* Emily update: It is with a sad heart that I report that her nerve block procedure was not successful. We are continuing to pray and seek out other pain relief options for her.

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