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For 20 years, we lived a quiet life in a pretty little twin. In 2005, we moved further out to Paradise.
My previous landscaping amounted to keeping a pair of hedges trimmed, pushing an electric mower across 400 square feet of front lawn, and little else. Now I've traded the electric mower for a John Deere and revel in a little over half an acre. The front yard is expansive, but my pride & joy is out back.
The most magnificent feature of the property is a non-fruit-bearing cherry tree, which takes over the front yard from late April through early May. Easily the prettiest feature of the neighborhood at that time. The cherry sheds its spring blooms like so much pink snow. This means that we rake twice - Spring and Fall, but it's absolutely worth it!
I now find myself with a yard that takes an hour to cut, even with a kewl little Deere. And I love every minute of it. I use the highest setting on the mower, for that tall, lush look.
Paradise is on a cul-de-sac, ultra quiet. The back yard borders on a reservoir, and is separated by a chain link fence. You can't see the fence because of the out-of-control overgrowth.
Above: A stitched panorama showing the expanse along the fence. There are indications that the previous owners had some plan, but allowed this to grow wild for years. For our first year, I pulled weeds and unwanted vines and brush, and succeeded only in growing a huge debris pile next to the shed. As fast as I pulled things out, they grew back. I had to call in a pro.
Ahhhhh, that's better. A little over 100 feet, 20 feet deep, nuked, seeded, and covered with straw.
A pile of stones, found when the area was nuked, became the suggestion of an entrance to a new seating area. Day lilies were planted in front of each column.
  And, by the way, we get WiFi all the way back there.
About 100 square feet on the right of the garden is devoted to butterfly bushes and other plants that they like. It was immediately clear that butterflies do, indeed, like these.

During the Summer of 2007, Jean finally had her new deck and patio installed. A beautiful (and ultimately unfinished) transformation to the house meant a disaster for my back yard.
Trucks large and small, forklifts, pallets, stone cutting, and two solid months of work left my back yard in shambles. The contract called for some light landscaping (just to clean up the mess), but that contractor disappeared. I let it go over the winter, but now it's time to reclaim my back yard.
First up - the Meditation Walk, a path which goes around the back from garage to patio. A nice feature from the previous owners, it now led directly to the middle of the new deck stairs.

On to 2007.
The results of my ill-conceived flower garden
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