The Great Outdoors

So the previous owners of the house didn’t care much for upkeep, or maintenance of any kind. So you can imagine what happens when bushes don’t get trimmed, and the lawn doesn’t get mowed, I could go on… That’s my house.

First, the bushes:

BEFORE: Front bushes

Talk about curb appeal! I guess I have to thank the bushes for their contribution for why this house sat on the market for 6 months. We brought in an arborist, who very politely hid any sign of his horror, and identified the bush on the far right as a hydrangea, and the far left is a Rose of Sharon. He knew the middle one too but I’ve promptly forgotten it because it doesn’t have any flowers. He then got down to business and trimmed them to the proper shape.

AFTER: Front bushes

AFTER: Front bushes

Viola! Who knew bushes were supposed to be that shape? And how much better the place looks with a little weeding? The only bummer is that the bushes were still blooming, so those got cut back a bit. But we’ll enjoy them in all their glory next year. And hey, maybe I’ll actually live there by then! (That is another blog chapter in itself).

Anyway, moving on. The great part about this lot is that the house is next door to a chunk of town conservation land. Which means no neighbors on one side, which is a great for my naked omelet making. Kidding!

BEFORE: Conservation land/retaining wall

We had to call in a mason to deal with the basement, and turns out he does landscaping and patio work too. So he did a lot of clearing on our behalf. Which is great considering how much poison ivy there was along the retaining wall.

BEFORE: Retaining wall

AFTER: conservation land/driveway

Another curb appeal feature has to be the backyard. I use the term ‘yard’ loosely, as 2/3 of it is asphalt. I suppose one way that you can avoid getting poison ivy in your yard is just to have an Italian driveway?

BEFORE: Italian driveway/backyard. Yes, this is the backyard.

The mason had some fun with jackhammers, took out the excess pavement and regraded the whole thing! (Grass will be seeded shortly).

AFTER: backyard/driveway

AFTER: Backyard — Italian driveway gone and whole area regraded.

Speaking of grass, we have some! A lot, if you consider that it never got mowed!

BEFORE: side yard (from backyard)

Thank goodness for our savior, the mason. And I haven’t even gotten to the basement project, which was the real reason why he was there.

AFTER: side yard (from front)

TA-DA! Who knew that all you needed was a good old fashioned lawn mowing? Thanks, unsightly yard, for yet another reason why this house was so unsightly/unsellable for very minor cosmetic reasons!

And yes, I see it too. That bench sitting there will be another project. Looks like it needs some new wood and some paint.

Next up: basement project with the mason, front and back porch fixes, and bathroom gut job. And at some point in Sept, moving in. Hooray!

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