The Petty Home, a turn-of-the-century Queen Anne, is being fully restored by Miles Honeycutt. Miles is the same general contracter who oversaw restoration of the Clapp-Ferguson home and Winston's Broken House, both in the Cleveland-Holloway neighborhood. Miles is restoring the home in keeping with historic elements of the original house to a single family dwelling. Check back often and watch this great home come back to life.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Weekend Project.

Perfect weather for a little work outside. Finally got around to this little painting project. Next up - stain the deck.




Monday, October 15, 2012

The grass is greener where you water it.



The final phase of our landscaping overhaul has come and gone. Below is a documented tale of this epic event, made awesomer if viewed as a montage in tandem with "The Final Countdown" by Europe. There is no way we could have gotten this done without Caitlin and Jon Sloop, who were fantastic to work with throughout the process. Can't recommend them enough--Green Light Custom Homes. This particular weekend, we teamed up and worked side by side Catlin and Jon to get an amazing amount of work done. Lots of photos, so let's get to it!

Nellie and Ludo are ready for action.

Notice the brownness of the grass. Not just neglect, this dead lawn was achieved with several doses of roundup, which will likely result in children with extra appendages. After the grass was good and dead, I beat it back further with the weedwacker before the planting began.

Side yard before.

With Caitlin's guidance, we plotted out the location of each plant according to her vision.

Jon and Caitlin on a Friday with all our plants in tow. Overall our goal was to use plants that would be low-maintenance and or native to North Carolina.

The plants are small now, but should really take off in the next few years to fill out the yard.

Caitlin was great about taking the time to select and plot out locations based on water, aesthetic, and sun-needs.
The planting areas along the left-fence and inside the triangle be for veggies, but we already have 3 blueberry bushes in the ground. SCIENCE FACT: Blueberry bushes require pine bark mulch because regular mulch changes the pH of the soil in a way that makes it difficult for blueberries to thrive.

It's really amazing how far this space has come in just a few months.
I got a fancy new phone so get ready for lots of panoramic shots in future blog posts. Click the pictures to view larger versions.

Nellie's friend, Ariel, came by and was a huge help on Saturday.
Another set of hands totally increased productivity. Thanks, Ariel!
Front yard progress.

Caitlin (mastermind behind our landscaping project) planting one of the tall grasses in front.

Ludo was less than thrilled with our weekend adventure as it did not involve any ball-throwing or doggy play-dates.

Again--these plants should really fill in in a few years time, but already look great.

I'm pretty stoked about the rosemary bushes flanking the front steps. Other herbs for picking on my way into the kitchen from work include thyme, chives, sage, lavender, and oregano. We also have more sage, thyme, and marjoram growing in the back yard.

Front-left planted.

Front-right planted.

Now, mulching forever.

Enter the dump truck of mulch. I'm still amazed at how much mulch got moved in a few days time.

For each plant, we dug holes and mixed a few shovel-fulls of compost into the soil. Luckily, we've had pretty steady rain since planting so we haven't had to do a lot of manual watering.

So much mulch.
And here are some final shots of the front.

In the back, Caitlin made a nice little path of river rocks for water to follow in the event of heavy rain. All plants in this area are also suited to larger volumes of water and eventually the plan is to have a rain barrel in this corner next to the deck. There's also a significant amount of drainage under the ground here, which Jon tied into the gutter system to divert it from the foundation.
Back yard planted--we spread the remaining compost out on the lawn for the grass that we planted a few weeks later.

The grass will grow around these blue stone pavers. A metal barrier was put into separate the grass from the natural area.

Baby grasses.
In between the poured concrete pavers, we planted creeping-thyme that will fill in the gaps.

Under the pergola.
The next weekend Nellie and I got busy planting grass and veggie seeds for our fall garden.

We decided to stir up the dirt/compost in the lawn area to give the grass something to take root in.
Buying a bale of hay is like instant happiness for me. It smells like fall and hay rides.

Grass seed for some reason has green dye on it which really gave a new meaning to the term "green thumb."

To come: follow-up pictures of our planting beds and "lawn." Both have taken off like gang busters since the seeds went down.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Paths less traveled.

MORE PHOTOS OF MY YARD! Just what you wanted right?!

So at this point everything is pretty much done except planting. Now that the summer heat is starting to break that will be happening soon. Jon and Caitlin have done an amazing job so far. If you need anything built inside or outside of your house or some amazing design work be sure to holler at these guys. They are simply berries to work with - http://www.greenlightcustomhomes.com/

 The blue stones are all in and the gravel has been laid for the area right off the deck and the path through the planting beds. The pergola roof has also been put on and looks great. Blue stones were laid with a layer of fine gravel underneath to prevent shifting over time.

A tiny rock wall gives a little more shape around the large tree next o the fence.

 Pavers off the back of the deck lead around to side yard and front porch side steps.

 This will all look much neater once mulch and plants are in but it's looking great so far. Nellie and I buried an incredibly long drainage pipe that ties in three gutter down spouts and runs under this path. I LOVE watching water gush out of it when it rains hard. We dug trenches for about 100 feet of black pipe for that little project which was an accomplishment for people as lazy as us.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Diggin' in the dirt.

Jon and Caitlin got busy digging around the back yard this past week. A lot of the work they did this involved moving dirt around and grading the yard. They also laid the ground work for paths and plantings to come. This type of work isn't as showy as installing a deck or building a shed, but it's important nonetheless and, once again, the Sloops did a fantastic job. If I haven't given a link to these folks home page yet, here it is: www.greenlightcustomhomes.com. Caitlin and Jon are a joy to work with and do a fantastic job on projects large or small, indoors or out. Can't recommend them enough.

 Lots going on here - Coming in from the right a retaining wall that levels off the yard so that part of the grass will be relatively flat. There is more drainage behind the retaining wall. In front of the railroad beams, will be a mulch path with blue stone stepping pavers. We'll have gravel in front of the deck steps, which will lead into a path through the planting beds shown in the left of this photo against the fence.

 A better view of the retaining wall and leveled yard with two steps leading up to the shed. On the next visit, Jon will install a tin roof on the pergola which should make for a nice covered area to hang out in the back yard.

 The gravel here is a base layer for a blue stone path that will lead to the shed.

 Slightly wider shot.

From the patio. The triangle area is another planting bed as the east side of the yard gets the most sun.

Next up will be more paths. In the mean time Nellie and I have a lot of trenches to dig for drainage on the east of the house before the paths can come around to the front.