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Going Nutty for Oaks

As I’ve previously mentioned almost a month ago, there has been a whole lot of action going on around these parts. And I’m finally going to start sharing…
When I originally started writing this blog, I had intentions on this here little spot being a place for documenting our adventures in our new house. I never realized I would get into sewing and shift completely over to it here. That and the fact that we haven’t had much going on here in the past little while until this year, hadn’t given me much to talk about!
But I want to change that! I’m hoping to start sharing more again about our house renos and progress along side all the usual sewing and knitting and such. So I’m starting this journey back into that groove with this post… about trees accompanied by lackluster iphone pictures (sorry for the poor quality ahead of time… I wasn’t really thinking about pictures, I was just too giddy about adding trees!).
We’ve had to do a lot of necessary work around our house to fix existing issues with water. We started by maintaining the swale on the left hand side of the house so that water would drain properly away from the back and towards the road. The type of drainage we have is called a Rear-to-Front Drainage. And is what’s common in our neigbourhood because our neighbours behind us are at a bit of a higher elevation then us.
So anyways, what we did was put in a proper weeping tile in the swale and graded the whole thing so that the water is encouraged to drain towards the street. Now this left us with a bit of a mess along the property line, which was expected. But it also gave us the kick in the butt we needed to do something about our lackluster front yard landscaping (the backyard portion got seeded with grass). And we’ve been itching to add some trees! So we thought we’d at least start there, since neither one of us really knows much about actual landscape design.

Earlier in the week we had gone to the garden center and picked out some trees that we knew wouldn’t get too wide, but would get nice and tall, since this is only the side yard. We went with some Regal Prince Columnar Oaks. We debated between a couple of different columnar species but ultimately went with these guys. They looked nice and full and apparently keep their leaves throughout the winter, which gives added interest.
Now… Once we got them home, hubs spent some time grading and leveling out the side to make sure it was where and how he wanted it to be. And then the digging happened! We’re pretty lucky (and thankful!) to not have needed to bust our backs digging. We used the mini excavator (which we also used for the work on the swale and weeping tile) which made it digging through our yard much easier, since we mostly have clay underneath a small layer of topsoil. And each of the kids was able to ‘dig’ their own hole for their own tree!

They were so excited to help out! Once each hole was done, we (kids included) mixed a bag of triple mix soil and a bag of compost into every hole. It’s probably more then we needed, but we’ve always had luck using this mixture. Plus we really didn’t want to take any chances of it not taking because of all the clay!

Finally, we put the trees in, leveled them and added a bag of black mulch to every tree to help keep the ground nice and moist to help them start. All that’s left to do now, is to get some grass growing around the trees and we’ll be good to go!

We’ve been toying with adding a garden there but we’re still not sure about it… At least for now, we’ve got a good start! There is so much that we’re hoping to do with this house… I have a before picture, but unfortunately not for the side yard. So I’ll share that the next time I share about the front yard 🙂

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