Our yard was a source of pride for the neighborhood at one time. The neighbors used to look forward to seeing this yard bloom every year with azaleas,hydrangeas, Linton roses, etc. The previous owner of our home was an avid gardener. Unfortunately, she stopped tending her year several years before we bought the house as it had become difficult in her golden years. Lacking her green thumb and knowledge, we were ill-prepared to take care of the once lush, beautiful yard, and it fell further into disrepair.
After living in our house a few years, we realized our yard had grown into a jungle. It was difficult and dangerous to walk through, and it had become an eyesore. We knew we needed to completely overhaul it and start from scratch. To save some money we tried to do as much as we could with our own hands, but we had to hire professionals for the bulk of the work.
Knowing our yard’s history with the neighborhood, we did not want to just rip everything out, so we sent out a notice to our neighbors: they could take any plants they wanted from the front yard if they came over and dug them up themselves. Half the ‘hood came a-runnin’ with pots and shovels to take a plant (or two…or several) to transplant them into their own yard. It was great to meet our neighbors and by the time the professionals began work, we had already thinned out our yard a lot.
Next we hired a company to clear some of the older, more dangerous trees. There was one huge oak directly in front of our front door. Not only did it provide a large load of leaves to rake in the fall, but there were several large, dead branches that hung over our roof, which was a concern. There was another large tree leaning over and up-heaving some of our drainage and driveway. When speaking with our landscaper, we realized the trees also detracted from the sight lines of our home. It was an easy decision to remove them. We live in an unincorporated part of the county so no permits were required for removal.
When gathering quotes for tree removal the vast range of prices was surprising. The quote we ended up accepting was nearly half of the nearest competitor’s. It definitely paid to shop around and get several bids for the work. We made sure they were licensed and bonded, as we do with every professional we hire to work on our property.
On a Sunday morning, work finally began. It was amazing to watch the men work the ropes and skillfully maneuver up the tall trees. It took most of the day to remove five trees.
The scariest finding was when the largest oak tree was cut down, we found that it was rotting on the inside. The hole at the base of the trunk was big enough for a person to fit inside. The stability of the tree had definitely been compromised so it was a good thing we had it removed.
Once we removed the trees and cleared the lawn there was no turning back on our landscape project. Stay tuned for upcoming posts with more detail about our yard makeover!