During the spring of 2009, I finally decided to do something with the backyard. I was fed up with the uneven, pockmarked, weed infested green strip I called a lawn. Something had to give, taking a stroll across the lawn was was not unlike a womens first experience in a pair of pumps, my poor ankles were begging me to rip this bad boy up.
I had learned from my previous experiences with a front tine rototiller, that a lawn this size would be an enormous undertaking. So I found an amazing rear tine BCS tiller that I nicknamed “Big Blue”. This machine tore through the soil effortlessly, had various speeds and was extremely easy to navigate. I wish all tillers were as fun to use. I managed to do the entire lawn “30′x150′ in a few short hours.
With the easy part aside, the real fun began separating the grass/ weeds from the clogs of soil. Getting closer to some real work, leveling the site and getting ready for the sod, the rear section I will seed since it has less traffic.
I decide it would be too much work to rework the existing grade and level the entire site. The very back of the yard (north end) a slightly higher elevation than the front of the yard nearest the house.
On the east side of the yard about a third of way from the house, every spring I would get a massive amount of ponding once the snow began to melt. So why not make this problem area work to my advantage.
I made the area closest to the house and on the west side of the yard slightly higher then the east so all the water will run away from this area and collect here, which was pretty much happening already. I created a shallow trench to help distribute the water as evenly as possible.
This area was home to the patch of strawberries and raspberry canes that I inherited. I repositioned an old tub that was in this general area and intended to plant lettuces, herbs and maybe some onions in here. I planted my perennial herbs along the edge of the trench still leaving a large patch of earth for vegetables and on the other side of the trench, sod.
What use to be upon a quick glance, a lush green urban oasis. Now was nothing more than an arc of green shooting through a long muddy brown rectangle. What a beautiful some what desolate sight, a fresh start.