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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Landscaping Project: "Before" and "During" Pictures

Hello fellow bloggers!

I am excited to be able to post some pictures of our landscaping project finally!  If you missed my first post regarding this very large (and expensive!!!) project, click HERE. This post also has a few "Before" pictures and a picture of the landscape design.

We had to wait a few weeks for the quarry to cut and prepare the stone and then we had to wait for the landscaping company to make out their schedule for June so they could give us a start date.

They were tentatively going to start last week, on the 21st or 22nd, but we had a number of days early last week where the temperatures were about 96 degrees with very high humidity and so they got behind on their other projects because of the heat. When there is a heat advisory, they don't have their employees work because it can be dangerous.  Here in Wisconsin we do get some hot days and if it was a dry heat, it's much easier to deal with; but we have the worst humidity, so 96 degrees can feel like 120 degrees.

At last the hot weather went away, so they started the demolition of the old wall on Monday. I was at work, so I did not get any pictures of the old wall coming down.

Here's some more "Before" pictures, just so you can get an idea of how hideous the old wall and fence was:

The front walkway and steps were very broken down and terrible.

The side yard
 Side yard steps and gate:

 In many places the wall segments were leaning every which way and falling apart.
 The chain link fence made it look like a prison! Weeds were always growing in all the cracks no matter how many times we pulled them up or sprayed them with weed killer.

When I came home from work Monday, this is what it looked like:
The wall was gone, most of the fence was gone and so were my back steps! A big dumpster with pieces of the old wall was in the street, waiting for the truck to come back and take it away.

This is what my front yard looks like now:

They had already excavated the front and laid down some gravel:
 The side yard ( the long side ) all excavated...........

Some of the saw-cut Lannon stone for the new wall.
 My poor front yard!

They had to store the pallets of new stone in our driveway, so we will have to park on the street for awhile! There is also a huge mountain of gravel at the end of my driveway!

Starting to lay down the new wall.

Everything is super dusty! There's dirt and stone dust everywhere! It doesn't help that we are in the middle of a drought and have not had rain since early May. Our grass is pretty much dead and my flowers are hanging on because I've been watering them like crazy. Soon they will probably but a ban on watering if we don't get rain soon.

The laying of the stone is time-consuming. The stonemasons are laying down 3 and 6 inch slabs at intervals, but also cutting stone with a stone saw to make pieces fit and also give it that "random" look which looks more like an old-fashioned wall. This is a dry stone wall, there is no masonry.
 This is where my back steps used to be:

In some sections where they have most of the wall in, they are starting to back-fill with gravel.

It looks so pretty! The foundation of our house is also Lannon stone, but it's a different style of "cut" that is called "rock-face" and the squares are much larger in size. Almost all of the early homes and Victorian homes in our neighborhood have a Lannon stone foundation and many of them have Lannon stone walls also. Most of the older Lannon stone walls from the 19th century are what is called "snapped" stone. Ours is "saw-cut", so they are smooth on the tops and bottom. It's more expensive than snapped, but the labor cost is cheaper because it's easier to place. Snapped stone is rough edged and jagged on all sides, but it takes more work to place.

My entire house and all my flowers and plants are covered in dust! I hope that after this project is finished we get some rain to wash everything clean. The landscaping company gave us a price to do the planting beds and put in some trees in the front and ,after discussion, we decided it was within our budget to have them do this as well, so after the wall and steps and walkway are done, they are going to fine-grade the front yard and level it (it's very lumpy and hilly) and plant new grass, make new planting beds and put in some trees. It will look very nice and very different after they are done! I can hardly wait!
Thanks for stopping by! I will continue to post pictures as things progress!

1 comment:

GinaBVictorian said...

Oh how exciting! Your house is so pretty and will look very nice when all is done. I know what you mean about a drought and dead grass. Ugh!
Can't wait to see more photos! Have a great week!