Ready For Spring Planting

Welcome to the 312th Metamorphosis Monday!

Thanks so much for all the comments left on my last post. I read each one, not just once, but several times. Your prayers, encouragement and individual stories have been a true blessing and they have brought me much comfort over the last few days. So many of you well-know the heartache of losing someone very close to you. I’ll be returning to that post to read your comments again whenever I feel overwhelmed or sad in the coming days. Thank you for that gift.

Preparing The Front Beds For Spring Landscaping

Recently I shared some of the last-minute steps I’ve been taking to prepare the front beds for landscaping. The unsightly gutter extension is now gone.

Landscape Updates 3


That downspout was piped out across the side yard. You can see the faint lines where the grass was temporarily removed to install the piping.

Underground Drains for Gutters


This particular pipe ends in a pop-up device. When it rains, water will flow down the gutter and into the piping where it will eventually end up down here where you see the circular green thing below. Then the green thing will pop up and release the water. I like that it will give the newly planted Leyland Cypress trees a  little watering each time. Better to have the rain from the gutters end up here than in the center of the side yard.

Leyland Cypress Trees


I had all the gutters around the house piped underground and out to the natural area in back of my home.

Downspout Piped Underground


Waterfall Japanese Maple Transplanted

The shrubs in front of the house on this side were removed a few months ago so all that was left to move was the Japanese Maple.

Waterfall Japanese Maple


I waited until it was dormant to give it the best chance of survival during the move.

Landscape Updates 4


It’s now in its new home here in this small island.

Waterfall Japanese Maple Transplanted


I’ve been keeping it watered so hopefully it will do okay here. It actually looks much better here than it did in front of the house. A branch had been touching the ground in front of the house and now it doesn’t, so it really does look a lot better. I’m hoping it will thrive in this spot.

Waterfall Japanese Maple


Now that this area is cleared, I’ll be making final decisions on the shrubs I want to put back in the next few months. I know it will involve plenty of boxwood. I love boxwoods and they are a great look  for a traditional home. Low maintenance, too.

In Georgia, the best time to plant shrubs is in the fall. The heat of a Georgia summer can be tough on newly planted shrubs. Since I don’t want to wait all the way to fall, I’ll just have to be diligent this spring/summer about keeping the shrubs watered.

Transplanting Waterfall Japanese Maple


Here’s a view of the front cleared for planting…well, all except for one little Nandina that bravely grew back after the Nandinas in this area were moved to the backyard. I’ll be transplanting it to the back, too, I love decorating with the berries at Christmastime.

Planning Spring Landscaping


I’m really looking forward to getting this area completed, then I’ll be able to start thinking about a bath renovation. Or, two.

Looking forward to seeing all the wonderful Before and After for this Met Monday!

Met Monday


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  1. Linda Page says

    Welcome back!! We have missed you greatly. Looks like you have quite a project on your hands here but all is falling into place. Great idea to bury the drain spout tubes to carry the rainwater to other areas of your yard. Can’t wait to see what plants you select. Can’t beat good old boxwoods. They are sturdy and low maintenance. I know it will look great. Now, when you finish the yard and bathroom renovations, would you skip on over and help me with mine???? I have decided that most of my renovation work is gonna have to be done once I retire and have more time.

  2. Thanks so much for the party!!


  3. Hi Susan, I’ve never heard of that kind of downspout before. We need to reroute where one of our gutters run off, we’ll have to look into that. Thinking of you. ♥

  4. i am starting to see daffodils stems pop up. i want to transplant a few things before spring but can rely on our weather of later.

  5. Good to see you back. I think I’d be just like you- keeping busy to ease one’s mind through this time. Your home is going to look wonderful with your new plantings. The downspout with the pop up feature is pretty cool- I’ve never seen that before! I hope your maple does well- I’m sure it will with deep waterings. I don’t have anything to join the party with but I wanted to drop by and say hi!

  6. I’m glad to know that the sympathies expressed by your readers can bring you some comfort, Susan.
    It’s lovely to see some planting preparations again! We have tons of snow here but, then, that’s good for the plants, too, I suppose.
    Wishing you a beautiful start to a brand new week,
    Linda at Beautiful Ideas

  7. Wow, Susan, looks like you have plenty of work cut out for yourself. It will be beautiful, as it always is. Thanks so much for hosting.

  8. Hi Susan. Wow – you’re giving your yard a wonderful overhaul! I’m really enjoying the process. As always, thank you for hosting your party.

  9. Oh Susan, I am so excited for your new landscaping! I LOVE that pop-off valve sort of thingy with the diverted drain! And your Japanese Maple looks so great there – when it leafs out it will be a stunner, esp in Fall. Oh, and those Nandinas – I cannot keep those little suckers from sprouting up all over my section of the landscape where they are – they must be happy is all I can say.

    Just a thought…now would be a great time to think of planting something in your sister’s memory somewhere in your garden this spring. I did that for mom’s memory.

    Thanks for hosting us – it’s a great way to start the week. I hope yours is a good one.

  10. Have you considered Encore Azaleas? We planted them all around our house in the Piedmont of NC and they have done very well. They are called Encore because they bloom in the spring and fall, so you get two rounds of flowers everywhere without doing a thing but enjoying it! I will say this, I am not a fan of formal looking bushes and really love the organic look of azaleas that are allowed to just grow with very little pruning. The only thing I do to ours is trim the occasional random branch that seems to grow twice as fast as the rest of the bush. So if you’re going for a more formal look, it is not really a good look to over prune an azalea – at least in my opinion, for what it’s worth. Even though we live in a nice traditional neighborhood, I’m still a farm girl at heart. Daisies, gingham and organic looking maintenance-free bushes.

    I am glad to hear that you embrace your Nadinas. I can’t convince my husband that they are anything but a weed. I love them to decorate for Christmas too and was so happy this year with how long my arrangements looked nice. Even after almost three weeks, the Nadina and greens still looked great. I only dismantled them because all the flowers died and I was ready to pack up Christmas decorations.

  11. You are so on top of it. Can’t wait to see how pretty it will be. Come to TX and give me a little lesson! Thanks for hosting.

  12. Hi Susan…I am sending you some extra hugs this morning. Glenda was such a kind and thoughtful person and I know that you and your family miss her very much. Thanks so much for hosting…hugs…Debbie

  13. Susan your home is beautiful…the new shrubs are going to look wonderful in the front of your home! Thanks so much for hosting!

  14. It just has to be one degree above FREEZING and I’m ready to “think Spring!” Remind me…are you by chance planting any Nellie Steven’s…they really are lovely….after some maturing… Can’t wait to see your master plan! franki

  15. It has sure felt like Spring the last few days here. Though cold at night the sunny days have been great for being out in the yard. It will be fun to see how your yard looks with all of it’s new plantings. I love boxwood also. Thanks for sharing and for hosting.

  16. Oh Susan,
    I am so glad to see you posting again. 🙂
    As you said yourself, staying busy is a good thing and although I know, it’s
    easier said than done, I hope you will not feel a need to reread all those comments too often…
    ~Hugs to you~
    PS: Please, don’t tell me you’re planning to remove that gorgeous pheasant wallpaper in that beautiful bathroom?! 🙂

  17. Thank you for hosting Susan. Liz

  18. We had A LOT of work to do in the yard this year so I’m interested in all your ideas.

    Thank you for hosting Susan!


  19. Oh, Susan, I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your dear sister. Thanks for hosting your party for us even in this time of sorrow. I can’t wait to see what spring brings to your “new” yard.

  20. I just read your last post and your words touched my heart so deeply, Susan. I am truly sorry for your loss, and my thoughts and prayers are with you.

  21. So happy to see your post this morning! You have been on my mind all this past week.

  22. You are so smart to divert your rain water to outer gardens Susan, I know your yard will be beautiful this spring! Thanks so much for the party today~

  23. Susan it is gonna be beeeee u tiful!!!! Thanks for sharing your exciting plans, COME ON SPRING!!!

  24. I am so sorry for the loss of your sister. I hope and pray you find peace and comfort during this season of grieving. Be kind to yourself! There will be days when it is even hard to get out of bed. My mom was sick for 7 years during my childhood. So thankful your sister was such a comfort to you during your mom’s illness. Blessings to you.

  25. I can’t wait to see how you design your new beds. Thanks so much for hosting.

  26. So glad you’re back, Susan. My thoughts and prayers have been with you, and I know you’ll face some rough times ahead, so I’ll be keeping you in my prayers. Great idea with the gutters. Your yard is going to be a show place when you’re finished. Thank you for hosting. laurie

  27. Good Morning Susan. I am so glad to see you back. I just know that your yard and garden will be lovely. Thank you for the party today!

  28. Lovely to see you back Susan. We still have snow, so a long time off for planning anything here. Look forward to your progress.

  29. Susan, thanks for hosting! I love boxwoods too. I can’t wait to see your yard this spring.

  30. Thank you for the party, Susan. Looks like you’re keeping busy and that’s a good thing. It all looks great so far. Bathrooms, huh? I’ll be watching for that! 🙂

  31. So good to see a post, Susan, you are an amazing woman! Boxwoods are such a fabulous idea! So elegant! I can’t wait to see. Thank you so much for hosting, hugs.

  32. Oh, I can not wait to see photos of your yard later this Spring. It’s funny, well to me, to imagine that Japanese Maple coming to life soon, and looking around thinking…where am I? 😉

  33. Wow, we are still in the depths of winter, although the last few days have been in the high 40’s! How exciting to be outside already.

  34. Susan ~ I am glad to see you in blogland today. I do hope that staying busy helps you during this sad time.

    So you are doing your front and I have to do my backyard. I really have no clue what we are going to do!

  35. Such a treat to see your post in my box again. You know you have been missed! Your yard looks like it is progressing nicely. We have underground drainage too and love it. I have kept and sited my nandinas, after the great info you shared, and am now looking for some of the doublemint gardenias since they sound better suited than the gardenias I had in mind. And encore azaleas gets my vote also, if you want some color. I do love southern yards! Thanks for all the effort you put into your blog and for graciously sharing your life and home.

  36. Thanks so much for hosting, Susan — great to see you again! I always love reading your gardening posts– maybe since we don’t do much of that around here. Hugs!

  37. crumpety cottage says

    It’s great to hear from you, Susan. 🙂 I like the way Mr. Japanese maple looks in his new home. I hope he likes it there. And what a courageous little nandina bush. I almost hate to see him moved.

    For your front, you might consider some arborvitae. They are so hardy and easy to care for!! They amaze me. And they come in various sizes for different sized spots. One or even a small grouping would look nice between windows or at a corner. I also love those hardy hydrangeas that bloom and bloom and bloom some more. They are pretty against all the green and just bring a spot of color to break things up.

    The idea to move the gutter underground and have it water your leyland cypress trees is inspired! Great thinking. 😀


  38. My sympathy for your loss.
    Been there a number of times in my youth and later years. Sometimes the pain leaves a place that cannot be repaired but faith and physical work is a answer. Best regards your friend in plaid.

  39. Hi Susan. So glad that you are back to posting. Your beds are looking great. I have some empty beds myself, where we cut out 60 year old junipers, and I am anxious to get them filled too.

    Thanks so much for hosting and I continue to keep you in my prayers and thoughts during this difficult time.

  40. It’s good to have you back! Nothing like getting a head start on the next season. I wish I had half your energy! Rerouting the gutters underground is a great idea, too bad we can’t do that where we live. Thanks for the party!

  41. Well you got me to buy the plates, but I don’t think I am ready for the house just yet. But I can’t wait for that day! And I can’t wait for the finished yard pics too

  42. Dear Susan, I am just now finding out about the loss of your dear sister. Please know you will be in my prayers. My heart hurts for you and wish there was something I could do to ease your pain.

  43. I can just imagine how beautiful your yard is going to be in the Spring!…
    Thanks for hosting Susan!

  44. Marianne in Mo. says

    Welcome back! I hope your heart is beginning to heal.
    A funny story about the pop ups – we have them too, and once, a few years ago, we experienced a deluge of a rainstorm. It was coming so hard that I was becoming nervous. Kept looking outside, front and back. I noticed in the front, where the pop up was, the ground around it had mounded up in about a 6′ diameter! It was maybe 10 inches above the normal height. Got out the umbrella and investigated. I guess the pop up got clogged, and the rain was stuck under the sod. A few pokes with the tip of the umbrella relieved the water. When hubs got home I told him about it, and he went out to clean the pop up out. It had a lot of debris in it that the torrent of rain brought down. I laugh when I think of the sight of groundswell I saw that day, and am thankful I wasn’t driving in that!

  45. Oh my goodness you have given me such hope! I bought my own house in November. In September (On MY birthday) I moved out of my home of 25 years after my marriage of 32 years ended in divorce. At the time that we had built it, it was our dream house and I loved that house. I poured my heart and soul into decorating and landscaping it and I miss my gardens so much!
    Yesterday it was over 50 degrees which for Missouri in January is a rare day, and I had the day off too! So I spent some time walking around outside in my very neglected yard here at the old but new to me house and discovered a downspout that goes into the ground exactly like the one in your picture. I was fearful of why it looked like that because this yard looks like it has never been watered in the 30 years since this house was built. It is a sight for sore eyes, with all my poor trees roots popping up out of the ground looking like they are desperate for a drink! Now I will be eagerly waiting our spring showers to see if anything pops up in the yard! Although reading that previous comment up there makes me wonder what else I might find! A very nice surprise yesterday was discovering that my home, like my old one and like yours has a Japanese Maple tree. Mine is on the side of the house just like at my old house although this is the lacy, feathery looking leaves instead of the kind with the traditional maple type leaf. It is also much younger and smaller, and I am looking forward to nurturing it along.
    Sometimes the not so fun projects yield the nicest results, and I am sure this latest project of yours will not disappoint you. Thank you for sharing, it was very helpful!

  46. Sharon Elaine says

    I lost my sister a year ago yesterday (Feb. 18th), I’m so sorry for your loss. Our winter here in OH has been terrible – can’t wait for Spring. With Spring comes new life – so thankful.

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