New Landscaping: After photos with captions

by Lian on March 12, 2012

As requested, some “afters” of the landscaping in the front of the house.  We wanted  to spruce up the front of the house, creating a little cohesiveness and style for our otherwise plain house.  I wanted some simple and clean, structured but not formal.  That sort of describes our overall style.  Basically, I like using classic lines but with a contemporary twist. Yesterday, we got the Edna Dolan Seal of Approval. My mother came by yesterday, with my sister Monica visiting from Portland, and the whole plan got the thumbs up.

This is the view towards our driveway. We completely cleared out the hodgepodge of plants, put in the pathway and then planted the Little Ollie olive hedge. I love the color of the olive branches and the looseness of the form. We'll let this grow without too much shaping for a couple of year. The pots and trellises are new, giving us some height on walls that don't get much sun. They are planted with star jasmine, a dark green year round with little scented whit flowers in summer. I like scent, hence the jasmine, lavender and gardenia.


Looking the other way, we used the same Little Ollie hedge to connect the two side of the house. This bed is a monster, I know. We needed to extend it to create an even line across the front of the house. We used the birdbath as a "anchor" and planted around it. Those are iceberg rose ( which grown like weeds here in Pasadena) gardenia, lavender and in the back, flowering maple in burgundy. The existing tree is a long established camellia.


The steps and front porch got a new look. We painted the old tired red brick a chocolate brown that works with the house color. then extended the step area with the same slate path. Berick also did the trim and front door a dark black/green. The little bed features a patio-sized orange tree and lavender.


We had this slate left over from a patio in the back yard. Berick and the boys have been moving the giant pile around periodically while we decided what to do with it. The boys were relieved just to finally put it somewhere permanently! railroad ties, a gravel "bed" and the slate fit together by Berick & Co.

Here is the little path to the bird bath, a gift from my boys a few years ago. I like to look out the window in the morning and see the birds doing their thing. The stepping stones will help me get into the bed and clean it out when I need to. It's a cloudy, cool day today, but this side of the bed usually gets full morning sun and then filtered sunlight in the afternoon. In the back, some more flowering maples set to go in. These are very popular here-- and kept getting snapped up as soon as they came into the garden center. We finally snagged two more this weekend.


In addition to the landscaping, Berick and boys have painted all the trim and the front door. (I am a terrible painter, slapdash with no prep skills whatsoever, so I’ve been banned from that aspect of the job.) We’re almost done, but who knows?   Several  neighbors have stopped by to ask Berick to work on their places.

Embracing my Chaos, Lian



chris March 17, 2012 at 4:09 PM

oh I could really use a few sets of hands here…

it looks gorgeous, serene, and very appealing..draws you in….

love the use of slate and rocks…I am teased all the time b/c I am a rock hound and love when I dig up a field stone to incorporate into the garden..
Its a great garden and the boys are learning much..thanks for sharing..

Lian March 14, 2012 at 7:50 AM

It is hard not to overplant! But we wanted a little space to let the garden breathe, not be wall to wall plants.

Thanks for all the nice comments. Lian

LeAnn M from Minnesota March 14, 2012 at 7:06 AM

Lian love the look Berick and Co. did on your. Maybe I can get him to do some work for me here in MN what do you think? Spring seems to be arriving early here as we expect 70+ all week.
Thanks for all you great podcasts and posts.

yvonne madvig March 13, 2012 at 8:20 PM

Loved the pictures! What a great project. If time allows I would request one more picture. Your front door. I would love to see how that looks with the paint that you mentioned. Congratulations on a DIY well done.

Linda Sue March 13, 2012 at 5:16 PM

Thanks for sharing, Lian. Looks great and you didn’t over plant it. It’s so hard to leave open space but I have learned that lesson the hard way. Landscapers routinely fill it up with too many plants do it looks good right away, but most have to be moved or die after a year or two. I applaud your patience and Barrick’s talents. Enjoy your hardwork.

Sue S from MN March 13, 2012 at 2:11 PM

It turned out wonderful!! Thanks for sharing.

mari (Bookworm with a View) March 13, 2012 at 8:35 AM

Looks great! A great sense of accomplishment to have something turnout so well.

We are just starting a DIY patio project, railroad ties purchased just yesterday… our son is coming home this weekend and will be so helpful. :)

Thanks so much for sharing your lovely photos

CLSD OPEN March 13, 2012 at 7:21 AM

Looks awesome!! Thanks for sharing your photos and the fine handiwork of your husband and sons! :)

Lian March 12, 2012 at 6:17 PM

Karyn… once we put in the last two big plants, we’ll mulch and then see what happens around the birdbath. I didn’t want wall-to-wall plantings. It’s too big a space. Some of the plants will really fill in. a little patience in the garden is a good thing.


Kathy in Atlanta March 12, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Very nice, Lian! You have a terrific husband and terrific sons. Do they know there is this bunch of people around the globe who are impressed by them?

t3zoo March 12, 2012 at 6:04 PM

Thank you, Lian, for sharing your photos! The project looks beautiful, and it’s very impressive that you did the work yourselves! It definitely gives me some inspiration. Although, I will only be doing small parts myself, I can assure you!

Ma Schmidt March 12, 2012 at 5:56 PM

“like” :)

Cyndi March 12, 2012 at 5:05 PM

I love the pathway – everything is beautiful and you will appreciate it over time when you remember all of the planning and hard work your family put into it. Really like the birdbath – sweet!

Karyn March 12, 2012 at 4:54 PM

I like the name little Ollie. ;) Will you fill in around the path and birdbath with mulch? Groundcover? Annuals?

Kristin March 12, 2012 at 4:03 PM

Will they come to suburban St Louis? :) Looks great!

Natalie March 12, 2012 at 3:55 PM

This looks very nice. Your husband sounds like mine, always needing to have a project to do. Not a bad thing mind you!

Sue in NJ March 12, 2012 at 3:46 PM

Your crew did a wonderful job! Enjoy the results :-)

pat in o.c. March 12, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Beautiful! They did a wonderful job!
Love the walkways, the slate path, the bird bath, & I love your unique windows too.

Stephanie March 12, 2012 at 1:06 PM

Lian–Looks fantastic! You should post before/after…Congrats!

Cloud Mom March 12, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Great curb appeal! What wonderful results from a DIY project.

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: