When we moved into our home, when it came to the yard, we had a clean slate …meaning, zero landscaping was done. And when I mean zero, I mean nada, zilch, zip… Nothing but weeds and a couple native trees that weren’t bulldozed, but that’s about it.
First things first, we needed a fence to close in the yard to keep our roaming neighbors from destroying any plants we put in. The area we live in is plentiful with deer and they are destroyers of most all things green. Our neighbors to one side had a pre-existing fence, so at least we had a little to start with, and less lumber to purchase.
These guys would come into our backyard space daily to forage and hang in the shade under the kids’ trampoline.
My husband worked hard putting in the posts through hard limestone-ridden land. This took a lot of time and effort.
Once we had the backyard enclosed, we chose to designate the side yard as our kitchen garden. I drew up the design and my husband got to work! He put in a garden gate and small raised beds.
This was the result… Which we are now working on taller raised beds and more of them for more abundant backyard production. Read more about that here.
On another side of the yard is this back area. We wanted to create a space for a fire pit to hang out and enjoy time outside together.
We dug out the large limestone rocks straight from the yard… Cemented them together to create a retaining wall to plant along the back fence and create a pretty backdrop to the area.
I tried to stick to native Texas plants, herbs and some fruit trees like plum and fig in this space.
In the corner, I put a pergola I snagged on clearance for 90% off at Target along with a chimnea a neighbor was giving away.
We put play sand at the bottom to throw off our shoes and let our feet dig in and relax. The kids love to play in here also.
Another area of the yard I decided to designate as our food forest. The builder did leave in some oak trees when they cleared the land, so here I’ve put in an understory of fruit trees, including fig, peach and apricot, blackberry bushes, strawberries and herbs like mint and thyme.
I’ve also planted long-blooming plants like Autumn sage to keep the bees happy and pollinating my fruit trees.
We put in a hammock and a swing and it tends to be a place the kids enjoy reading and playing their ukuleles or playing make-believe with their toys.
Our yard is an ongoing project and these transformations didn’t happen overnight. We’ve been working on our yard for over 5 years now, and we’re still working to improve it and make it ours. I hope our hard work gives you some inspiration to make your yard space a place you can enjoy!