Fashion is everywhere

Chez Larsson

Garden Plans

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Yesterday I shared my interior to do list. Aside from that I have quite a few things to do in the back garden too this spring. And I can’t wait. Above you can see what that space looked like at the end of March last year, a month and a half before we moved in. Sadly overgrown and not cared for for over eighteen months. A horrible huge juniper at the far end and a neglected apple tree with it’s fruit rotting on what used to be a lawn and an equally sad plum tree.

 

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My first instinct was to start over but I decided I’d give the garden a second chance, try to clean it up a little to see if I could live with it. The juniper went, the trees got new hair cuts, I weeded like crazy and tried to revive the lawn.

 

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After a while I came to the conclusion that while this could potentially become the garden that used to be it just isn’t me. It’s all too fussy, too colorful, too much. Just look at that super deep flower bed. Or should I say weed bed…

 

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And check out this here jungle in front of the patio. And the crazy paving that goes with it. Sorry, I can’t deal with it.

 

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So I posted an ad on ilovegratis.se (a Swedish website where one can post free stuff) and offered all the perennials to whomever was interested. I had two lovely ladies come dig, gave a lot away to neighbors and…

 

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… here’s what it looked like after. There are still a few plants in this shot that I’m keeping such as the Hostas.

 

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And here’s what it looked like at the end of summer. I dug the rest out and my next door neighbor and I drove to the local dump/composting site and got rid of it.

 

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I raked out the soil to redistribute it and replanted the plants I wanted to keep in a temporary bed in front of the stairs to the basement.

 

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My aim for this garden is to have fewer plants, more lawn (the garden is tiny), a bigger patio (decking). I’m going for straighter lines and will keep a more modern approach. Those dots on the “after” lawn are something similar to these.

 

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Come spring I’m having a larch wood deck built here (slightly larger than the existing stone area) and I’m hoping my next door neighbors will agree to letting me have a fence that covers theirs completely from my side.

Pinterest

I get a lot of inspiration for my new garden from Pinterest. Check out my pins and you’ll see what I mean.

Ok, now I’m REALLY ready for spring to come!

36 Comments

  • Emma says:

    Good morning Benita !
    Wow, more gardening to come, I’m so glad ! Your gardening posts are my number one favorites. I’ve checked your pin board, inspiration’s flowing ! Can’t wait to witness your progress (you’ve done much already).
    Have a good day 🙂

  • Älvan says:

    I’m really looking forward to this! I’m in a gardening mode myself right now although my project is rather overwhelming (our garden has been partly neglected for years, and it’s huge – 2500 sqm). I’ve decided to do it in smaller projects, and this year we’re concentrating on the kitchen garden and the apple trees.

  • Monica says:

    You have done so much already and I really love your “after” plans (the round stepping stones – cool). I hope your neighbors will let you cover the fence. Neighbors can be a challenge. One of our neighbors uses our their property bordering with ours as a dumping ground and tells me how much she likes looking into ours. I am thinking, “I wish I could say the same.”

  • Maureen says:

    I love the big circle stepping stones! If I ever get out of a city apartment and into a place with a tiny garden….BOOM…I will have those circles too. Can’t wait to see!

  • Leena says:

    I also love the circle stepping stones. Your pinterest collection is amazing!

  • Jenny says:

    I love garden planning, it’s so rewarding to see the effort put in actually come alive. Are you limited to what you plant because it snows in winter where you live? I remember from your last garden you put some of them ‘to bed’ in late autumn. It must be like a rebirth to see the plants that are left outside poke their heads out and up when spring comes again. The stepping stones look great, lots to look forward to!

  • Yes, we are limited but I guess there are limitations in all climates so if we just stick to what works in our area we’re usually fine 🙂

  • Annie says:

    Älskar utomhusprojekt! Känns som att våren är nära:) Jag undrar om du kommer behålla fruktträden? Älskar träd och tycker de ger en härlig rymd till trädgården så jag hoppas att svaret är ja.

  • Carin says:

    Looks like we’re going to have some fun gardening posts come spring and summer! How fun! Love those circular stepping stones- they are so cool!

  • Träden blir kvar, de ger både lite insynsskydd och skugga 🙂

  • Judith says:

    Looks like we all love those dots – so cool! Now I’ll be eyeballing my old-fashioned garden to see if I can possibly sneak those in somewhere.

  • jja says:

    wood deck sounds great 🙂

  • Mona says:

    Excellent planning! I don’t have a garden, so I can’t wait to see how yours turns out!! I like your modern garden with the clean lines – much better than random plants crowded together!!

  • monica says:

    Wow, what a change- I am sure it will be wonderful! Very soothing. Love the idea of a nice wood deck to extend your space.
    Am just curious- why do you have to have your neighbors permission to extend your fence? Here in the US you can put a fence up if it is on your property. Only real rule that I know of is that the “good” side often has to face the neighbors. Would they have to ask you if they extended theirs?

  • There are rules saying you need your beighbor’s permission if the structure you’re building is over a certain height or closer than a certain number of meters from their property. You should get the permission in writing because people move and if you don’t have a written permission new owners can complain and ask a structure to be taken down. I have already approved those theighbor’s putting up a garden shed in the back and a large bike rack structure in the front so I don’t think they’ll deny me my fence but I’m still worried that they might feel too closed in with a more solid structure so close to their open one. I’ll make a drawing to explain what I plan to do and then hope they’ll agree that it will look nice :).

  • Nicola says:

    Your plans look wonderful: very simple and chic (very ‘you’, in fact!). Will those stepping stones be a pain to mow around, though? The grass would have to be very lush to set them off. You could maybe have them in a little river of dravel or build a sort of boardwalk off your deck. Hope you get the chance to relax in that garden this summer, too!! x

  • ModFruGal says:

    Yay for circle pavers! I look forward to seeing it come together! Thanks for the link!

  • r8chel says:

    Benita, I don’t think I had ever seen a picture of your back yard. I didn’t realize you had so much space!

  • Zosia says:

    Looking forward to your spring posts – the plan looks good.
    I like that you can give the plants that you don’t want to other people.

  • I am impressed by both your vision and your action! Wow! (And I have GOT to get on this Pinterest bandwagon…) Off to make a more specific To Do list. I think that will help me take action, too.

  • Wendy says:

    You have made a great start all ready on your back garden. Are you going to keep the stone patio under your new deck? Also I am not able to see your orange SEARCH button – am I just missing it?

  • Giulia says:

    Wow, what a great plan. That’s going to be backbreaking work. Simple can be so much better at times.

  • can’t wait to see the After; I know it’s going to be super cool. Those round pads are perfect!

  • Kac (from Prague) says:

    Thanks for great inspiration, we’ planning changes in our garden just now too, so it will be very helpful.

  • Cancale says:

    I am always amazed how you can envision things on the large scale. You attack the current status with such fierce, where I would try to adjust the status quo with small changes. Chapeau! I am really looking forward to watching your progress. Please share how you muster the energy!

  • Agnes says:

    Benita,
    Så fint det blir!
    Apropå dator!
    Jag har en MacBook Pro, 13″. Har enbart iPhoto som följer med. Picnik som ingår i Flickr är till stor del gratis.
    Jag lånade program från en vän, säkert helt fel att göra så men inga problem, nu ingår jag i deras “grupp” av datorer. I Mac kan man tanka in vanlig word och excel som jag använder. Ingen extra kostnad för mig.
    Hur man använder musen finns en liten film på deras hemsida, jag tittade på den och sen var det enkelt.
    Bästa rådet till dig som någon hade skrivit är väl att se vad som är viktigast i din användning.
    Jag är så nöjd, allt är snyggt : ) Lycka till med valet.
    Agnes

  • Vilket spännande ( och stort) projekt, men det ser väldigt lovande ut! 🙂 Blir spännande att se hur det kommer bli i din trädgård framöver, nu längtar vi till våren, ellerhur?!!!

  • Kathryn says:

    I love seeing the progression as you ‘grow’ into your new garden. Like one of your previous posters mentioned, my favorite posts are about your garden. We just bought a property that came with 22 raised beds and 20 fruit trees. I will spend this spring and summer making it my own and blogging about it. It’s a crazy undertaking.I look forward to seeing what you do with your yard this spring! Good luck!

  • Hxx says:

    Only you can say a garden is ‘too colourful’ and get away with it!!

  • G.Sims says:

    This is crazy but just this week I was thinking you haven’t posted about your back garden in a while, and here it is. But I agree the garden is more cottage style than Benita-style and I know this to be more work.
    Going by photo 1: I’m not used to seeing backyards with (little or) no fencing. Is this common in Sweden?

  • I think it’s more common with row houses but most gardens do have some fencing or hedging and I was really surprised here that I “share” a lawn with my next door neighbor on one side and a flower bed on the other. It is a little weird and I’d prefer to have something in between us but I’ll just need to work around that fact I guess.

  • mribaro says:

    I like your plans for the garden – very retro 1950’s. As for the concrete circles I cannot but think of the Jacques Tati in the famous film “My uncle” where he visits some relatives in a modern house and hops from one concrete circle to the other. ( http://www.imdb.com/media/rm1517859328/tt0050706 )I guess you’ll have to measure that your circles are in a pleasant distance for walking (so one doesn’t have to hop) 🙂

  • Ah! I need to watch that movie again!

  • My contractor suggested I keep it there so I will.
    The orange search button sometimes disappears but then pops up again… it’s very annoyiung, I know!

  • I don’t plan to mow around them but rather over them. Will try make sure they’re flush with the soil around them. That’s the idea in theory at least :).