December 19, 2007

Landscaping Complete

The last load of dirt and rocks from our backyard's makeover was hauled away this afternoon. Our backyard has been neglected since I moved in three years ago, mostly because I have no real interest in using the backyard. However, I should have hired someone to maintain it right away, rather than letting it get out of control. I have tried each summer to clean things up, but that only succeeded in making it possible to see where you were going.

Originally we were planning to hire someone to do the work. The same company that I hired to fix up the front lawn and install the sprinkler system there. But the total cost was about 1/3 more than the maximum I was hoping it would be, and we have other home improvements that should also be done. My mom said she and my dad would like to visit us for a few days to do it themselves, because they thought it could be done for a lot less and be finished in maybe 3-4 days. Once they got here, though, they found out it was going to be a lot bigger job.

In total, I think it cost us a little more than the maximum I was referring to above, but still a decent amount of money less than if we'd hired a company to do all the work. The problem really is there was a lot of stuff that needed to be dug up, hauled away, and fixed up. A large portion of the backyard was covered in dirt-grass-filled rocks, overgrown, and not level. We got some people to do a bunch of the leveling and hauling both away and to the backyard, as well as the sprinkler system based on a plan my mom put together. We did the rest ourselves, which was basically most of the sod, all the landscaping fabric and bark, and also some digging up of rocks and putting down new rocks.

My mom originally had the idea of keeping some of the old rocks and just cleaning them up to save money. But it really wasn't worth it at all. We should have just dumped all the old rocks and it would have saved us a lot of time. Luna was spending days and days trying to clean the old rocks up, until I decided it just wasn't worth it and ordered a cubic yard of new rocks. We shoveled up the old rocks and replaced them with new rocks in one day. In total, we had to spend three weekends working on the backyard ourselves. It was very exhausting work, and left me feeling very tired and physically fatigued when I had to go back to work on Monday.

Everything is done now though, and we did save money. I just need to make sure someone comes on a regular basis to maintain it. The sprinkler system isn't actually complete either; I need to attach the control unit and another valve to run a drip-line to the banana tree. But that will wait until later, since the rainy season is starting now.

Posted by josuah at December 19, 2007 4:39 AM UTC+00:00

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