Showing posts with label before and after. Show all posts
Showing posts with label before and after. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Happy accidents when you don't know what you're doing

Lately I've been appreciating a bit of seredipity in the entrance to the backyard. Back in 2011 I posted about how I wanted the entrance to the back garden to envelop you, so you'd get a slow reveal to the rest of the yard. 

After a couple of unsuccessful plantings (mock orange, flowering currant, some other stuff) I planted a Ceanothus thyrsiflorus in 2012 and it grew quickly.

My neighbors had a gorgeous ceanothus that spilled into our side yard and it had been trained as a tree:

When the next door house was flipped and sold they removed this ceanothus and I lost all the shade in my side yard.

I'd never really seen another Ceanothus because I was new to gardening so I didn't realize most people let them grow as shrubs. I limbed up mine too and now it provides a nice canopy along the pathway. Most visitors don't recognize what it is because, you know, it should be a shrub. Or maybe the straight species is always a tree but everyone grows more exciting cultivars like 'Dark Star'.

Tree sized in six years!

I don't always love this ceanothus because its bloom time is short and the flowers aren't as intensely colored as some of the named cultivars. It's also messy once the blooms die. The good news is they don't live very long so I'll probably be shopping for a new tree/shrub in the next ten years.

Please also admire the color echo between the hosta and the hose junking up the photo. Based on every photo I have ever taken it looks like I live in a hose-testing facility.

And since we're looking at that old post, let's do a before and after!


Looking back at the entrance, you can see that my wine barrel has since been planted with bamboo, the rain garden was installed, and everything grew like crazy. That old bit of fence on the left was removed as well.



Standing in the middle of the yard and looking at the back of the house you can see that we were, in 2011, considering building a huge deck off the back of the house. It's not all happy accidents when you don't know what you're doing! What the fuck were we thinking?



Another gigantic whatthefuck was forming here with that goofy shaped bed (hinted at here with stones on the lawn). Circles and squares, damn it! None of this freestyle nonsense!



So the moral of the story is that you can limb up your ceanothus but you shouldn't hire Greg or I to design decks or raised beds for you. We suck at it.

Monday, January 13, 2014

I let someone photograph my garden in January

Our house is featured on Houzz today, holy smokes!

General contractors, home builders, and more ∨

Home improvement can start with something as minor as installing track lighting or ceiling fans.
Search for a fun counter stool, clock, sectional and storage dresser to spice up your basement.

I was emailed by a Houzz photographer in December about showing some before and afters of our house and I initially didn't want to do it. There are still so many rough edges and unfinished projects that I didn't feel like the house was ready. In the end I decided "perfect is the enemy of good" and that I might never get a chance to have a professional photograph our house again. 

Greg declined to join in because he felt like he'd be stealing my thunder (and he's shy). Oddly, the bathroom didn't make it into the shoot. I think that's the universe confirming that I need to repaint!

There are more photos here, as well. Eeep!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Before and after

Loree just posted an incredible retrospective of what her garden looked like back in 2005 when she purchased her house. She encouraged other bloggers to post photos of what their yards looked like when they moved in and how they look now. I don't have a lot of photos of the yard from the first year I was in the house because I was completely focused on the interior so I'll have to settle for two years ago in most cases.

Looking north from the side yard before:

And now:

Looking across the back yard then:

And now:

Looking at the back of the garage, south toward the side yard before (as we tore off the shed):

And after:

Looking east before:

Looking east after:

The side entrance to the yard before:

And now:

The front yard before:

And the front yard after (the new paint job is the real star here):

I've been going on a lot of garden tours and lamenting that the thing that makes a garden look the best is time. Time for shrubs and trees to mature and for plants to settle in. Looking at the before pictures is a good salve for this impatient mind. Anybody else have any good before and afters of their garden?

Friday, March 2, 2012

Final photo!

I've been waiting for a sunny day so I could take non-phone photos of the finished paint job. And then I wanted my before photos to show what it looked like when I actually bought it, arbor vitae in front and all. Guys, between the 30,000 photos (it's quantity, not quality!) I've taken and the two shows filmed here I think I have the best documented house in Portland.

And yet, I don't have a facing shot of the house with the arbor vitae, I guess because you couldn't really see the house behind them. So I have screen shots. I apologize.

I loved my inspector so much. Total sweetheart.

Can you believe I overbid on this crackden?

And then I tore out the arbor vitae with my friend David.

And then we had the rhododendrons removed and painted some swatches.

And now she looks like this!

Sunny day real estate

I'm really pleased with how the paint color picks up the bit of purple in the roof and in the bricks on the fireplace.

And I think it's going to look great with all of the plants (all the plants! all of them!) that I'm going to put in front.

On a stormy day. Still cheerful!

Even with the pink tree, LeAnn.

I love it, I don't care what anyone says. Pink + orange forever!

Bonus Offbeat Green because I'm in love with this scene!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

I've been making craptastic movies again.

Oh, Windows Movie Maker. You make such terrible movies.

I wish I'd been better about taking photos this year.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

It's my house-iversary!

On June 6, 2009 I had my reveal and the house became mine. In honor of my second house-iversary let's take a walk down memory lane!

Filming My First Place

My bathroom used to look like this.

Now it looks like this.

My kitchen looked like this.

Now it looks like this.

The yard before:

The yard after:

The yard is still very much in process


The site of the old patio slab.
Part of this process was removing 10,000 lbs of concrete.

The basement looked like this.

Now it looks like this:

The living room looked like this:

And it looked like this after the reveal:

And now it looks like this:

We removed the old furnace . . .

. . . and replaced it with an energy efficient one.

My friend David and I (but mostly David) removed the ELEVEN arbor vitae in the front yard.

By hand.

And I planted two Japanese bloodgood maples.

The dining room looked like this:

Now it looks like this.

I put in a new back fence, and I'm planning to put in a new side fence this summer. I painted every room in the house and have two hallways to go before I can say that I painted every paintable surface in the house. I had a lot of plumbing adventures, including putting in a new garbage disposal, changing the wax ring on the toilet, and clogging and then unclogging my basement sink.

And I got a new roommate. He's nice. Did I mention he mows the lawn for me? It rocks.

Illustration by Nan Lawson

The classic second anniversary gift is cotton. Perhaps I'll finally buy my house some curtains for the living and dining rooms.