I started to type "landscaping project finished" into the heading and then decided that wasn't quite accurate. We are far from finished. But we did complete our landscaping goals for this year. As you know, we tackled the lower yard this summer and spent a LOT of time raking gravel—four truck loads to be exact. (My uncle helped with this job one day and said it should be prison work. Yeah, he's probably right. But it was also really good for the muscles in my upper body. Does anyone want to arm wrestle?)
It is hard to give an accurate "after" picture of this project. I took these photos before snow started falling last week, but winter had already shriveled all the plants I planted. You will have to use your imagination to see what will hopefully eventually look like intentional, natural landscaping. Right now it just looks like a sea of gray, boring gravel.
You will just have to imagine the lilac hedge full and and blooming, the juniper plants crawling over the gravel, and the salvia, seedums, and sage filling in with color. The rock staircase will be covered in beautiful ground covers (if the bunnies will leave them alone.)
The grass will be lush and green. Well, green at least. At some point we will probably plant a new variety of grass that can grow into a fuller, richer lawn. And I will enjoy not having to mow the steep hillsides.
The cement planters will fill in with hundreds of daffodils, tulips, and alliums. Roses and grasses will add texture and color year round, and I will eventually add more perennials to this area as I see how things grow and develop. I'll cover the soil with mulch in the spring as well.
Next spring I also hope to transplant some native yucca plants and add a few more perinnials to punctuate the gravel area without requiring a lot of water.
For now we will rejoice in the satisfaction of a finished project and a much more manicured look as we pull in our driveway.