Vicki's Gardening

My Back Yard Gardens

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I have always loved gardening so when we bought our house, I couldn't wait to get started on our back yard!

These pictures were taken in February 2000 so the plants are just now coming out of their dormancy. All of the flowerbeds are around 3-5 years old.
This is the view we see when we look out from our breakfast table and kitchen.

The gaps in the hedge along the fence are usually filled with flowering shrubs, but they were cut back severely to bring them back under control because they had become much too large. They will fill in those gaps by next year.
Notice all the trees behind our fence? Behind our house is a creek or bayou (as it's called in our area), and to the right of us is a forest. Deciduous trees line the creek giving us a very peaceful feeling. We have a large variety of birds, insects, reptiles and animals visit our yard. I have learned to share my garden with anything from raccoons to bees to snakes. Deer frequent the area behind us. The fence protects our yard from the wild boars in the area.
Here, I'm in the middle of our yard, looking to the left side.

The Little Gem Magnolia tree you see in the back was small enough to be brought home in my car! It has grown at an alarming rate in just 3 years!

To give you some kind of scale, the fence is 6 feet tall.
All of the plants you see (except the two oak trees) were planted by me with my own two hands! The monkey grass bordering the flowerbeds came from our old house. The new owners let us clear out the overgrowth for the first 2-3 years so we were able to border almost every flowerbed with it.
This is Thunderope!

Our old house had only a tiny back yard so when we moved here, we just had to get a huge swingset for the kids!

It is a Rainbow "Monster IV" made of solid redwood. When we first bought it, Jenny didn't like the name so we asked her what she thought we should call it. Without skipping a beat, she said, "Thunderope!" And that's been its name ever since.
This is a view looking back at our house. We have a large covered patio which we enjoy immensely!

Every year, we have several birds build nests and raise their young in the hanging baskets! It is such a treat to watch the birds!
I normally have flowers around the trees and in all of the flowerbeds, but we are fighting a very difficult weed, yellow nutsedge, so I've left that area bare until we can get the weed under control.
This is the far, righthand side of our back yard.

I installed this stone pathway with my own two hands!

Everyone I contacted had never heard of putting the stones directly into the clay soil by making "mortar" out of the clay. Well, to all those companies who said it couldn't be done - here's the results!
I would like to install more pathways when I have more time. This path was installed to solve a problem we had with the rain water not draining. The builder had not sloped the ground between the houses properly so water would not drain and our back yard would become flooded. The pathway acts as a riverbed during rainstorms helping the water to drain very quickly. Now, not only do we have a pathway we enjoy walking on, but our water drainage problems are solved too!
I added this picture later. I believe it was taken around August 2001.

In this view, I'm on the far right side of my back yard (I'm standing on the pathway), looking across the back part of the yard.

Looking at this now, it's hard to believe that we once considered having the grass removed and started again because it was full of weeds: Dallisgrass (Paspalum dilatatum), Virginia Buttonweed (Diodia virginiana), and Yellow Nutsedge (Cyperus esculentus). How's that for a weed combination! Ugh! It took a lot of work, but the weeds are completely gone!

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