Home Tour Tuesday – The Great Outdoors

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For this weeks home tour we are heading out to the backyard for a little show and tell. Now this probably isn’t the best time to be showing you the backyard (being the end of a hot summer in Texas), but it will be a good way to document where our backyard is currently and where it goes from here.

Our house sits on close to a half an acre, so we have quite a large backyard that literally had one tree, a playscape, and a shed when we moved in. Yes you heard that right, ONE tree in the entire back yard. Not to mention that the yard was pretty much a weed field. So there was quite a bit of work to be done out there.

At the beginning of this year we were able to convert a small portion of our yard into a semi enclosed courtyard. I figured that the best way to landscape our yard was to break it into small sections and tackle one thing at a time. For the courtyard we had a horizontal wood fence built to section off the courtyard from the rest of the backyard. We then filled the area in with crushed granite and some seating. This summer this area has held a makeshift pallet table that I put together, but this fall I hope to put the fire pit there in the center of the seats. String lights were added to give that great outdoor patio bar vibe.

This is also the area were I have my cinder block succulent planter.

The rest of the courtyard area contains our concrete slab covered patio and a wood slat dining table that I picked up at World Market on super sale a few years ago.

Here is a quick view of the back of the fence we had built. It may seem strange to build a fence within our fenced backyard, but since the space was so large, I really wanted to create a separate intimate area were we could hang out with friends and family. This space allows for that without having to completely professionally landscape the entire backyard right now. Oh, and that tree in the picture below is one that we had planted last summer.

Speaking of trees, I mentioned that we had only one small oak in the backyard when we moved in. While I would have loved some large shade trees, it was nice to be able to pick the types of trees in our backyard and their placement. I ended up planting 12 trees so far. Two live oaks, one dessert willow, and a bunch of fruit trees including peach, 2 fig, 1 meyer lemon, 1 blood orange, 2 apples, 1 lime, and a pomegranate. The live oaks are in the middle of the yard so that one day they will provide some nice shade to the back of the house, while the other trees line the sides of the yard along the fence.

Here are my peach and 2 fig trees. I am really surprised by how much they grew from last year to this year. I am excited to see their growth progress through the years.

The back of the yard is where the playscape and storage shed were when we moved in. They are still there, but we added railroad ties around the playscape and added pea gravel in there for the kids to both play with and to make a better play area for them.

To the right of the playscape is my garden where I grow a bunch of veggies and herbs. I have an irrigation system set up in the beds which has made watering so much easier that my old house where is hand watered everything. Again, it is the end of August, so everything is either very over grown or starting to die. That bed to the right contains my tomato plants, cucumbers, and strawberries, and the bed of the left is chard, cucumbers, sweet potatoes, and okra.

That is it for now, but we have plans to turn the sides of the yard where the fruit trees are into native planting beds, and one day we hope to put a pool into the center of the yard (since there is still plenty of room), but that is a few years off at least.

Hope you enjoyed taking a peek at our backyard, future project will definitely be shared here so you can see how this space grows. Literally and figuratively. And with that I will end with a photo of the courtyard at dusk.

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  1. T DSB says:

    Hello Kara! Thank you for your awesome blog! I've gotten so many ideas from you on what to do with a large back yard! I can't wait to be a homeowner so that I can start my home projects!

  2. lauren says:

    I’m thinking of doing the decomposed granite in my backyard. Do you like it? Do you still have it?

    • kailochic@hotmail.com says:

      Yes! We have in at least half of our yard now. I love it because it is low maintence and doesn’t require mowing or upkeep aside from the occasional weed pulling.



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