Monday, March 06, 2017

Creating Curb Appeal with a Garden

Does your home lack curb appeal? Are you looking for a do-it-yourself project that can add amazing curb appeal? Why not start with a front yard garden? Let me share an after shot first.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
In this after shot above, the front yard garden was the first DIY outside yard project that was completed early in 2016. In the photo, you can also see that the house was painted along with the driveway. Now, take a look at the before-before photo!

home that is lacking curb appeal before photo
Oh woe is me! This place needs some CURB APPEAL !!!
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
Luckily for me, I didn't have to have that magnolia tree removed; the previous owners took it out along with the side yard bush and that bush near the lamp post. From the before photo, you can see that ANY work in the front yard would have surely been an improvement.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden First Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - First Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
FIRST DAY - On the first day of this DIY project, I moved the triangular area of patio stones to the back yard near the shed. I would later repurpose that stone to create an offset patio area. In all of my landscape projects, I take an area at a time and finish it off with mulch. In this project, I opted for better red mulch that would later complement the sage green color of the house.

TOOLS & SUPPLIES - Shovel, metal rake, hand cultivator, trowel, gloves, bags. Before you get started digging up grass and weeds, you should call 811 before you dig.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Second Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Second Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
SECOND DAY - On the second day of this DIY project, the yard started to actually look like something good was going to happen!!! That area that was dug up this day was tough to deal with. I didn't realize that there was a plethora of nut grass throughout that area ... I was using the hand cultivator after I raked the dug up area. I would filter out the debris, by hand, to put in the trash bags. I was finding a lot of stringy nut grass that should have warranted more work!

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Third Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Third Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
THIRD DAY - On the third day of this DIY project, I was working to try and finish an area across the front. You can see that red stone edgers encompass the finished area of the project along with red mulch. It was the second and third day of the garden project that neighbors were stopping me to ask, "what are you doing." I guess they hadn't seen any work done on this property in some time, so they were probably amazed!

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Third Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Third Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
Here is another view of day three of the DIY project from the street. I was noticing that the red mulch had a bit of a different color ... thinking maybe the older red mulch was drier. The red stone pavers add a nice finished look to the front yard garden.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Fourth Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Fourth Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
FOURTH DAY - On the fourth day of this DIY project, I was starting to feel that the "end" was in sight for finishing off the area for the front yard accent garden. By this time, many neighbors had stopped to say something AND the park manager must have been summoned by a curious neighbor. He and I had a chat about the scope of that project and he drove off!!

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Fourth Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Fourth Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
There's another photo of the fourth day of work ... thankfully, Home Depot is about one mile or less! And, driving a Jeep Patriot surely helps with these type of yard projects. I had to pick up more red mulch to finish off the dug-up area. Almost done! You may need some Aleve for your back -- like I did!

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Fifth Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Fifth Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
FIFTH DAY - On the fifth day of this DIY project, I was more than a little thrilled to actually "turn the corner!" That meant I had reached the width of the front yard accent garden and was capping it off with the red stone edgers and then starting down the side of the house! You can see the "blank canvas" of the garden area.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden Fifth Day
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - Fifth Day
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
I love DIY projects that are completed in under a week's time. For me, five consecutive days is a lot of exercise ... no need to go to the gym. It was the middle of January, 2016 when I finished preparing the front yard for the flower garden. Knowing that Florida can have a freeze into March, I waited until March 1st to start planting!

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden March 1st
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - March 1st
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
PLANTING! It was March 1st and I was ready to start planting in that front yard accent garden. It was lucky for me that I ran into a fellow at Lowe's while picking up some stone. He said he had some of the red stone edgers and brick pavers that I could have along with Aztec grass. The 8 clumps of Aztec grass across the front of the garden were from his yard!

Early plants that went in included 4 Firecracker plants, 4 Gardenias, and a Confederate Star Jasmine with small trellis.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden March 5th
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - March 5th
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
On March 5th, I added smaller flowering plants including Salvia, Kalanchoe, and assorted Dianthus. You can see rows of those flowering plants, left to right, with two rows of Dianthus nearer the house. To the far right, you can see a rectangular black flower pot that was used for cultivating sunflower seedlings.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden March 10th
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - March 10th
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
By March 10th, I was growing sunflower seedlings to transplant to the front yard garden. And, I had taken time to trim up the bushes that are across the front of the Florida Room. I do a trimming of the branches to create a tree look.

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden March 25th
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden - March 25th
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
Approximately 2 weeks later, on March 25th, you can see that the Salvia are doing the best with the Dianthus looking healthy, but the Kalanchoe is hanging in there. The Confederate Star Jasmine has been growing pretty well too. Daily watering of the new plants is important the first week or two!

CREATING CURB APPEAL WITH A GARDEN!

Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden
Creating Curb Appeal with a Front Yard Garden
19 Tortuga Way, Leesburg, FL 34788
Fast forward to not quite a year later. Some red polka dot pinwheels along with solar garden lights were added to the front. The periwinkles did spread throughout the front yard garden. The Aztec grass was dug up and replaced with Mexican Petunias. The Salvia didn't make it; only 3 Kalanchoe remain. The Dianthus is doing OK. The 4 Firecracker plants are probably triple the original size if not bigger. Three of them are down the side area and one is near the driveway. The Confederate Star Jasmine is prospering, so much that a large metal trellis was added.

Curb appeal can do a lot for a home. In this case, we continued adding to the "curb appeal" by painting the house and driveway. Why not consider a front yard accent garden if you want some amazing curb appeal?

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