Our Landscaping is in There Like Swimwear

I wrote all about getting ready for our big landscaping project – we put in landscaping walls, researched the types of plants we wanted, enlisted some serious help, came up with a plan, picked and tagged our plants, set a weekend for planting, and enrolled help for the kids.  Everything was completely planned.  And, it turns out that even yours truly can’t control the weather.

The forecast for our day of planting… Screw you Mother Nature.

Regardless of the weather, the show must go on.  The plants were delivered as scheduled on Friday.

Look at my sweet, sweet babies!

Our first step was to lay everything out where we thought it should go.  It was a long process.  One of our sweet neighbors even came over to help.  I would put plants where they were suppose to go and then step back to take a look.  Then I would go back and move things around and step back again.  Eventually every little plant had their own little spot.  It was also determined that we needed more plants.  When in doubt, add more plants…  We made a quick run to Lowe’s to pick up a few last-minute supplies.

All my little babies, in their spots.

The gang’s all here!

Anna actually did all the plant placement. My gig’s up.

Saturday morning arrived, and we were outside as soon as the sun came up and the kids were situated with their grandma (Martha – we owe you big time!). We started by mixing up our soil and getting our tools ready.  The dirt around these parts has a high clay content, which is really acidic.  To neutralize the clay, we were told to use a mixture of garden soil, peat moss, and cow manure.  Yes, cow shit. We were elbow deep in it all day long.

Yep, that middle bag is full of cow shit.

And then the rain rolled in.  We took a slight rain delay, hoping it would blow over.  We made a run to the nursery to pick up the rest of the plants that we needed.

At least the plants liked the weather condition.

Since the rain didn’t have any intention of stopping, we had to bite the bullet and push through.  Several neighbors dropped by to visit and tell us how hardcore we were for gardening in the rain.

Those are the feet of a hardcore gardener.

We didn’t let the rain stop us.  And, you know what?  It eventually let up to a slight drizzle.  We got three beds finished before we took a break for lunch.

Ladies, marry a man who will plant your roses.

The kids had been inside all day because of the rain.  They were going a bit stir crazy and chomping at the bit to come outside and ‘help’.

Hey mom, what are you doing out there?

After we ate lunch, Alex and I were moving a bit slower.  We had already been at it for 5 hours – we were tired and sore.  But, we still had about 50% of our plants left to put in.  We were coming to the realization that we weren’t going to get everything finished in one day when something amazing happened.  One of our neighbors came bouncing out of his garage with shovels and a bucket asking if he could help us.  Another neighbor popped over with his gear offering to help.  Obviously we didn’t turn them away! Can I just take a second to let you know that we live in the best neighborhood?  Seriously.  Our neighbors are incredible.  You may of thought that your hood and neighbors were the best.  You were wrong.

Pete and Dennis – expect some thank you treats from The Parsons!

Our helpers were fresh on their feet and ready to tackle the mud.  They came dressed to get dirty and they worked their rears off.  About two and a half hours later, all of our plants were nestled into their holes.  Our landscaping was completed!

It’s amazing how different the front of our house looks now.

I really can’t get over the transformation.

Now I can drink sweet tea on my front porch with my azaleas!

In a few years, these beds will look like something from ‘Better Homes and Gardens’

Please, step through my gardens to come inside.

Fingers crossed that the hydrangea grows large enough to cover that water drain.

Clematis and dayliles around the mailbox. Have to figure out a better solution for the clematis to climb with – thinking of doing a wire.

Next to the driveway – hydrangea and creeping phlox.

All-in-all, we are thrilled with the results.  The house looks completely different (in a great way) and it has the Southern feel I was going for. As a bonus, we are now no longer the slackers on our street without landscaping.  I wish that the beds looked a bit fuller, but our friends at Frisella Nursery keep telling us to have patience.  The plants will grow with time and completely fill the beds.  Patience is a virtue that I missed out on, so this is hard for me.  Also, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t nervous about possibly killing all of my plants before they have a chance to make it (or the possibility of none of them returning next Spring).  I’m not a green thumb, so I’m praying that I can keep these puppies alive.  I’m actually kind of freaking out about it.  I really don’t want to kill any plants, and I’m faking it until I make it.  I’ve read that the typical reason that plants die is because they are watered too much.  I’m trying to figure out how to know how much water they need, when to feed them, and when to not water them. What I really need is the name of a plant interpreter.  I have a strange connection with my plants – almost like they are another set of tiny humans that I have to mother.  Tiny humans that only need their heads watered, but not too often.  I know it sounds odd.  Maybe it’s all the exposure I’ve had to the ‘elements’ from this project…

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For all those of you that may be interested in knowing what plants we put in, see below and knock yourself out:

1 – Limelight Hydrangea Bush
2 – Creeping Phlox

1 – Clematis
2 – Daylilies

1 – Snow Fountain Weeping Cherry
2 – Little Lime Hydrangea
3 – Miniature Roses
4 – Dianthus

1 – Pig Squeak Bergenia
2 – Azaleas
3 – Green Mountain Boxwood
4 – June Hosta
5 – Lamium
6 – Pig Squeak Bergenia

1 – Limelight Hydrangea Tree
2 – Abelia
3 – Astilbe
4 – Azalea
5 – June Hosta
6 – Lo & Behold Butterfly Bush
7 – Green Mountain Boxwood
8 – Pig Squeak Bergenia

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