Yardmageddon 2012: Part 1 – Side Yard Slaughter

We never go in this part of the yard.  Honestly, I think we forgot it belongs to us.  It’s a useless alley hardly large enough to hold a garbage bin, but that’s exactly what we’re going to put in it:  our three carts will have a new home here once we’re done weeding and mulching.  The weeds got a bit out of hand – foliage grows fast in Washington!  Fortunately, they are easy to pull out.

20 minutes of weeding, a trip to Home Depot and 4 bags of mulch later:

We pulled out the rest of the weeds a few days later.  Minutes after taking this pic, it began to rain (hard).

Yay, rain! Now we can go inside!! (This is one of the things I love about living in Washington.)

Hedges going, going, gone!

Last time I mentioned hedges, our hedge row was looking a little gnarly:

Jim and I spent Friday morning in the yard weeding the driveway and sidewalks, weeding the mulch, weeding the weeds… and I thought, why not see how hard it is to remove one of these hedges? As it turned out, it wasn’t hard at all. Some wiggling, some pulling, and some quick work with the shovel (and maybe the loppers and/or saw) and a hedge root comes right out!

Two down, three to go.

Here they are, chillin’ on the lawn. The roots are big and tougher to break down into yard-waste-bag size, but our new chainsaw helped on this front:

Jim levels up his 2-handed axe skills:

Jim and I then cut the hedge branches down to size before stuffing them into yard waste bags:

We are so over the hedge! Here’s our big and bulky “before”:

And here’s our open and airy “after”!

(We’re not quite done yet – the hedge roots are going to sit in the sideyard for a while until we figure out how to dispose of them. They can keep the shower doors company!)

Cutting Down the Driveway Hedge

Another weekend, another hedge attack!


+ new clippers…


…wait, where’d the hedge go?!   At last, I can see the road as I back up!  The biggie on the end will have to wait until next time – as it is, this (plus cleanup) took nearly 2 hours and I’m pretty worn out now.  If the hedgelings survive this buzzcut (and I hope they do!) then I shall continue to shape them into neat little nubs, like so (I made this in Photoshop to get an idea of what it might look like):

But if they don’t survive, that’s okay too – I wouldn’t mind digging them up and putting a column of flowers or even decorative bricks into this space instead.

Hedge Trimming

Our house came with a crazy huge hedge that separates the front yard from the driveway.  This is the kind of hedge you craft into 10-foot-tall hedge mazes.   A hedge maze sounds pretty sweet until you realize it completely blocks your view of the street and sidewalk when backing up into cars, neighbors, dogs, small children, gnomes…

So a few weekends ago I carved a hole into the end of the hedge.   It took me about an hour, equipped only with the level 1 hedge trimmer that we found in the garage on closing day.

And there it stood, a giant “!” along our driveway as if the house had a leafy quest to offer.  Until this weekend!  Enter our new Ryobi bad boy:

My own dear Dad recommended this brand for its use of lithium batteries and the interchangeable-ness of the batteries between multiple Ryobi yard appliances.   As we expand our tool collection (ALL THE TOOLS!!) it’ll be nice to need only one type of battery that all the machines can share.  That, and the whole no-gasoline/no-oil thing is right up my alley.

As it turns out, the madness that overtakes me when I have a paintbrush in hand (inspiring me to paint EVERYTHING in sight) also applies to hedge trimmers.  VRROOOOOOM!  An hour later I’d reduced our hedge to its individual components.   It even yielded some loot in the form of a tennis ball and a wiffle ball.

The mad rampage of hedge trimming was ended when the battery ran out of juice.  I suppose an hour or so of hedge annihilation really ought to be enough for anyone.  What the hedge now lacks in artistry it makes up for in functionality!   I finally feel good about backing up off my own driveway.

PS: I’ll even it out when my right arm regains sensation.  :D

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