Our backyard area has come a long way, but it is still a work in progress. I thought I would give you an update before everyone is tired of Summer. Let’s take a look at my Before and After Backyard Transformation.
For those of you new here, we sold our large house and property and have moved into one of our former rentals. We don’t know if we will stay here, but we are enjoying being in town, so who knows. We have owned this house for over 25 years. Some renters liked to garden most didn’t. Here is what the backyard looked like when we started this project. FYI we wanted the whole yard to be more water-wise. This house is surrounded by nice homes except for one which happens to be visible from the backyard. This was the view from the backyard gate looking West.
After. We wanted a backyard area that could be easily maintained should this house become a rental again, and water conscious. The gravel is California Gold. All of the plantings are in greens and whites. Everything is on drip irrigation. Many of the plantings are in pots so we can take them with us if and when we move. Sorry, the picture isn’t better. Our days have been so gloomy lately. Both umbrellas will be the same color. I ordered them from Home Depot and one came in blue, so we had to substitute the one from the front yard. The fountain pots are planted with iceberg roses and white lantana. The wall is lined with Italian Cypress.
As you can see “Furrie” has adapted to becoming a town cat. The table in between the Ballard chairs is an old base from something that Steve unearthed in his warehouse. It is waiting for a stone top. The galvanized pail and watering can are flea market finds. You can find similar on Ebay here.
This was the area where we have our table now before.
Sorry,this is a different angle. Note house next door. That is why we planted the Cypress trees and raised the wall. The chairs surrounding the table are from World Market and sold out in all of California supposedly. That is another story. I didn’t want all of the furniture to match for a more collected look.
The urns (old but similar linked at the bottom of post) are filled with olive standards.
The vintage trough is filled with variegated plants in greens, whites, and purples.
This is the view looking East.
Behind the wall is the garage and an “add on” that was part of the structure that we inherited when we bought it. Steve used the “add-on” for his office for many years. That is why he built the wall to separate his office from the home so the renters would have some privacy. When we decided to move in here Steve thought it would be a good idea to tear down the wall to “open up” the backyard. I wasn’t so sure. The “add-on” wasn’t very attractive, and the garage wasn’t overflowing with charm either. He sent me these progress photos, and I really wasn’t sure. You can read about my original vision for this space here Designing a Small Town Garden here.
As I said, the “add-on” wasn’t all that pretty. I love a challenge, but I have to admit this one made me a little nervous. I was wishing the wall was still standing at this point. FYI, the “add-on” was to serve as my office. It was a bit dark and dreary in there with the tall wall.
As you can see we had our work cut out for us. You can read about my plan for the garden here at Backyard Town Garden Design. The area in front of the office still needs some work, but it is coming along.
This is what the wall along the garage looks like now. The chairs are by Suzanne Kasler for Ballard Designs. They are extremely well made and comfortable. The mirror is from Home Depot. The table was built by our friend Jim (now passed away). We had this coffee table and the dining table at the lake. Steve painted them a lighter color. I still need to distress the finish a bit more. The doors still need strap hinges. The Tuteurs on either side of the doors were also (built by Jim), a gift for my Birthday one year. They have white bower vine planted in the centers.
The table was built by our friend Jim (now passed away). We had this coffee table and the dining table at the lake but the bases were painted dark green. The vintage watering can and concrete sheep were thrifting finds several years ago. The pillows are from Pottery Barn. All available items are linked below the post.
Here is the little path that went to the side of the house with a beautiful view of the place next door (the only house near us that looks bad).
Steve decided to raise the fence for privacy and so our cat couldn’t get out. We got rid of the gate because there was no need to access that area. This little table and chairs resided inside the small courtyard outside the office. I think it looks fine here for now. We planted Italian Cypress and teucrium all along the back fence. Opposite the table are Hydrangeas and teucrium (too small to see). The architectural piece (part of an old newel post) we have had for years. We almost tossed it in the move.
All of the beds are planted in various shades of white. We will see how it works out as the garden matures. I did add purple in the trough on the table, I felt it was too stark without it. Metal on metal in all white was not very friendly. Thanks for reading Before and After Backyard Transformation. There are a couple of other areas that aren’t fit to photograph yet. I will try and update those areas on my Sunday favorites.
SHOP MY BACKYARD GARDEN ROOM